NPD: Gasoline Up, Driving Down

  • April 19, 2011
Americans are driving less because gasoline prices are rising. Houston-based The NPD Group, which tracks consumer motor fuel purchasing behaviors and attitudes, reports that gallons purchased are down 1.2% from a year ago.

The firm conducted a survey in January to to find out at what price level consumers would drive less. We've hit it: today's gas prices averaging $3.79 per gallon have 60% of consumers cutting back. David Portalatin, who looks at the fuels industry for NPD, says consumers will become even more spartan with their behind-the-wheel time, "like reducing or consolidating shopping trips, taking more mass transit, and carpooling," he says, in a statement from the firm. He adds that if gas goes above $4 a gallon, people will start working from home, relocating, changing jobs and driving more fuel-efficient vehicles.

When gas hit $4.16 a gallon in 2008, 49% of drivers reduced shopping trips, 29% modified vacations, and 25% found alternate means of transportation, including mass transit, carpooling, and riding a bike.



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