BOISE – For the first time in a month, Idaho’s average price for a gallon of regular gas is back above the $3 mark.

According to AAA, today’s average price is $3.05 per gallon, which is ten cents more than a week ago and six cents more than a month ago, but 64 cents cheaper than a year ago.  Meanwhile, the national average currently sits at $3.28 per gallon, which is six cents more than a week ago and 20 cents more than a month ago, but 13 cents less than a year ago.

Idaho ranks 30th in the country for most expensive fuel.

“The Gem State has been in the enviable position of being below the national average since mid-January, and we’re still experiencing less pain at the pump than a year ago.  But gasoline stocks are dropping, and the price of crude oil is rising,” says AAA Idaho public affairs director Matthew Conde.  “Barring another significant cold snap, Idaho gas prices are likely to climb heading into the spring.”

The West Texas Intermediate benchmark for crude oil is currently trading near $80 per barrel.  That’s $5 more than a month ago and $4 more than a year ago.  The cost of crude makes up more than half of the price of finished gasoline.

In the most recent report by the Energy Information Administration, Rockies refineries operated at nearly 92% of capacity, about 11% higher than the U.S. average.  But gasoline inventories also declined by roughly four million barrels.  If supplies tighten further or if crude prices increase this week, it could put additional upward pressure on pump prices.

The EIA also reported that U.S. crude production recently hit 13.3 million barrels per day, about a million b/d more than a year ago.  But exports also reached 4.3 million barrels per day, about 1.2 million b/d more than a year ago.

“Looking at the regional landscape, Utah’s average gas price skyrocketed by nearly 15 cents this week, Wyoming by 14 cents, Montana by about 13 cents, and Colorado by nearly 12 cents – another strong signal that the winter savings we’ve all been enjoying may soon come to an end,” Conde said.  “We anticipate a spring drawdown in fuel supplies as refineries prepare for seasonal maintenance and the upcoming switch to summer blend fuel in 6-8 weeks.”

AAA encourages drivers to bundle trips and avoid peak traffic congestion wherever possible to help conserve fuel.

Here’s a look at Idaho gas prices as of 2/20/24:

  • Boise – $3.08
  • Coeur d’Alene – $3.09
  • Franklin – $3.02
  • Idaho Falls – $2.92
  • Lewiston – $3.12
  • Pocatello – $2.98
  • Rexburg – $2.94
  • Twin Falls – $2.91