Mio Galarza says she would only need a tank of gas a week, if all she used her car for was commuting. But she has two teenagers, so it's two tanks and it's become expensive.
"Every time it's 40-something dollars when I fill the tank," said Galarza, who lives in Danbury and works part time at Christian Community Action in Norwalk. That's $10 to $15 more than it used to be.
As everyone has noticed, the price of gas has risen sharply recently. The price of gas in New England is up 45 cents a gallon from last year, according to the Energy Information Administration . The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says the price of gas went up 8 percent in December, contributing greatly to a rise in expenses overall for the average consumer. The price of gas was 13.8 percent higher in December 2010 than it was in December 2009.
Prices in Danbury are cheaper than in Norwalk, according to ConnecticutGasPrices.com . Galarza said she's bringing lunch to work more often and buying less clothing. If her 17-year-old daughter wants to go somewhere, Galarza suggests she get a ride. "She has friends who are driving now," she said.
Hilda Rees of Bridgeport spends a lot of time driving, but the government pays for much of the gas she uses. She is a U.S. Postal Service express mail carrier in Norwalk. She says the price of gas hasn't changed her life. "You do what you got to do," she said. "I can't honestly say that I've cut back on anything. You notice it, you know? It's just a lot more than you're used to."
She drives a six-cylinder Ford Taurus. "It depends on how your car is running, too," she said. "You've got to make sure you've got air in the tires, everything is running right."
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