Wallace Reid is seeking a new job due to the high cost of petrol.
Reid fills up his Lexus at least three times a week as a New York-based Uber and Lyft driver. He pays around $95 each time, which is more than he did the previous year. He’s driving more frequently to make up for it, but he’s also seeking jobs that don’t require a car.
Reid isn’t alone. Millions of Americans who rely on their automobiles for work are altering their routines, joining up for carpools or even dumping their cars for bicycles as petrol prices just topped $5 per gallon for the first time ever. According to AAA, the national average for this week is $4.95 per gallon, up from $3.06 per gallon last year.
There could soon be assistance. On Wednesday, President Joe Biden requested Congress to suspend federal gas taxes for three months, which would remove 18.4 cents per gallon off the price of petrol. He also called on states to suspend their own gas levies.
Gas, though, is already putting a strain on finances.
Jace Shoemaker-Galloway, a pet sitter in Macomb, Illinois, toiled over whether to raise the price for Paws and Whiskers Sitters. Every day, she visits up to ten homes and fills up her 2018 Mazda CX-3 virtually weekly. She recently spent about $50 on a fill-up.
She took action this month. She notified her clients that she would no longer be offering the regular repeat customers a 10% discount.
Children’s book author Shoemaker-Galloway said that her clients were sympathetic. But she is concerned that other aspects of gas pricing would harm her business.
Orvilia Nieto, who lives in an RV near Lytle, Texas, could travel over a typical summer. However, it might not take place this year. In order to travel to her job at a T.J., she is battling to fill the tank of her 2008 Ford Expedition SUV. 20 miles away in San Antonio lies the Maxx distribution hub.
Nieto and her coworkers share information on the best places to get petrol. Even when she uses a carpool sometimes or simply fills her tank halfway, she still spends more than $50. However, she considers herself fortunate. A few of her coworkers make the nighttime trek home on their bicycles after her shift, which finishes at 2:30 a.m.