Good news for N.C. drivers

May. 02, 2013 @ 05:12 AM

If you are driver in North Carolina, there is some good news amid all of the bad surrounding the nation’s economy.

A recent report from AAA Carolinas suggested that driving an automobile in the state will actually be cheaper this year compared to last.

This particularly bodes well for the tourism industry in Rutherford County. As people start planning weekend trips to see exciting parts of the state, because driving is cheaper, Rutherford County can see strong benefit.

The report cites lower gas prices, better fuel economy and lower insurance premiums as the reasons behind cheaper driving.

This certainly rings as good news if you account for the fact that there are a lot of drivers in North Carolina.

Consider this: The report said that the owner of an average sedan in North Carolina will pay $9,362 in 2013 to drive compared to $10,558 last year, based on current prices. That includes insurance, gas, tags and taxes, depreciation and driving approximately 15,000 miles in a year.

That is about a $1,200 savings from one year to the next.

Not a bad chunk of change if you factor increases in the cost of living that most in the state face every year.

One big factor in the price drop is due to the fact that the cost of gasoline is around $0.30 lower than this time last year. Across the state, the average cost of a gallon of unleaded gas is $3.42. A year ago, the average cost was $3.44.

The report indicated that the cost of a new average sedan was flat from a year ago.

Another positive for drivers is the cost of insurance premiums have dropped by an average of almost $30 per year for the average sedan.

What does it all mean?

It means that, after seeing the cost of one of the most common tasks for adults in North Carolina go up over the last few years, there is reason to get out and drive again.

“The decrease in vehicle costs is great new for North Carolina drivers,” said Dave Parsons, president and CEO of AAA Carolinas, in a statement. “Driving costs had been rising steadily since 2009, and now motorists are finally seeing some relief.”

All we can say is ... it’s about time.

By Matthew Clark, for the Editorial Board


The Daily Courier Editorial Board consists of community members Jerry Brewer, Kyle Bingham, Tom Padgett, Dr. Shermaine Surratt and Cliff Strassenburg as well as Editor Matthew Clark.