Drivers to see highest Thanksgiving gas prices since 2014

Tampa, Fla., - Millions of people expected to travel over the Thanksgiving holiday, and they'll be paying more to do it than they did just last year.

Gas prices in the Tampa Bay Area, and across all of Florida, are up significantly. Last year around Thanksgiving time in the Tampa area gas prices were right around $2/gallon.

Today it's closer to $2.50 per gallon.

Tampa's prices are average for the state. According to AAA, prices are higher in South Florida like Naples and West Palm, but they are lower in cities like Orlando, Jacksonville and Panama City.

"This year has been unique at the pumps. Gas prices spent much of the time in the week approaching Thanksgiving by rising when typically, they would be on a sizeable downward trend," says GasBuddy's Head Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan, whose company tracks gas prices for ABC Action News. "On average Americans are paying nearly 40 cents a gallon more than last year."

GasBuddy's annual holiday travel survey found that travelers are still expected to travel longer distances despite the higher gas prices.

Some tips they offer include watching out for state lines, because of differing state taxes. "In some extreme cases, drivers can spend an extra $25 when refueling the tank if on the wrong side of the line."

Another tip they have is to avoid filling up near the highway. If possible, they say to drive a little farther toward the nearest town for cheaper prices.

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