Spring break plans hit by gas hikes

Spring break plans hit by gas hikes

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by Joe Smith

kgw.com

Posted on February 20, 2012 at 6:38 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 20 at 8:35 PM

PORTLAND - Higher gas prices jump as many are making plans for spring break.

The average price for regular unleaded Monday was $3.65 a gallon for unleaded.

Getting away is going to cost more this year -- whether it's the Oregon Coast or the coasts of Hawaii.

The cost is up on average 15.5 cents over just a week ago.

With gas prices predicted to climb, it's enough to put the breaks on some spring travel.

"National average could be in the neighborhood of $3.75 to $4.25, that would put the Oregon average a bit higher at possibly maxing out at $4.35" noted Marie Dodds, spokesperson for AAA Oregon/Idaho

Hawaii is the most popular spring break getaway from Portland.

"The prices are very expensive. Most people have already booked," said Paula Hobble, owner of Focus On Travel in Beaverton. "Where it was $400 to $450 last year,this year it's more $500, $550 or $600. That's a great difference."

Fuel surcharges are responsible for much of the increase. For trips to Asia and Europe, the fees are even higher, in many cases higher than the base fare.

And, if you're taking a cruise, read the fine print. Every cruise line has a clause which could invoke a daily $9 per person fee if oil tops $70 a barrel. 

Despite the rise in gas and fuel surcharges, with spring in the air, it's vacation or bust.

"We had 81 percent of people tell us that 'I don't care, I'm taking my vacation, period, end of discussion, I'll find a way to do it,'" said Marita Hundson-Thomas of Orbitz.

As you plan your getaway, keep in mind, buying packages for air, hotel, and car instead of individually will save you money.

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