Poll finds gas prices keeping many home this summer

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 8, 2011

By David Vitrano


LAPLACE – Gas prices, though on the decline, are still well above what they were just one year ago. And with summer — the traditional time for family vacations and impromptu road trips — already here, many are facing a dilemma at the gas pump over whether taking that 10-hour drive is a good idea while gas prices hover in the $3.50 range.

Accordingly, last week L’Observateur asked visitors to its website whether gas prices would affect their summer travel plans.

Whether related to the price of gas or not, nearly 40 percent of respondents said they will not be taking any trips this summer. While gas prices surely influenced the vote, the present state of the economy no doubt played a part in the high number of people staying home this summer.

For a large portion of the respondents, more than one quarter, the gas prices will have no effect on their travel plans. Almost another quarter said they will not let gas prices keep them home, but they may not go as far as they originally planned.

The remaining respondents said they will be taking fewer trips this year as a result of high gas prices.

A full breakdown of results follows:

• 26 percent of respondents chose “It will have no effect on my travel plans.”

• 23 percent of respondents chose “I will still travel, but I may not go as far as I planned.”

• 13 percent of respondents chose “I will take fewer trips.”

• 38 percent of respondents chose “I will not be going anywhere this summer.”