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Jump at the pump: Oil prices reach 'highest level in 2023' forcing gasoline to go up

The cost of oil per barrel is the most expensive it's been so far this year, creating a ripple effect at the gas pump and on consumers' pocketbooks.

BOISE, Idaho — Oil prices are at the highest they've been in 2023, and gasoline prices are reflecting it.

"We've been lucky so far, but pricey fill-ups are coming, and it's a matter of when, not if," said AAA Idaho public affairs director Matthew Conde.  

According to AAA and GasBuddy, prices across the country, as well as in Idaho, are creeping up once again. With 45 states experiencing a price hike in state average gasoline prices.

"High crude prices will give us grief for the foreseeable future, and as colder states like Idaho start thawing out, fuel demand will rise and increase the upward pressure on gas prices here," said Conde.

The West Texas Intermediate (WTI) benchmark for crude oil is currently trading near $81 per barrel, which is $1 more than a week ago and $14 more than a month ago.

Although the Energy Information Administration reported that fuel demand dipped last week (which typically pushes pump prices down), the increase in crude sent prices higher.

If oil prices rise this week, gas prices will likely follow.

Although the average cost in Idaho has gone up, there is some good news for Boiseans. According to GasBuddy, Boise has seen prices go down a few cents in the last week, averaging $3.62 per gallon as of Monday. AAA quotes a slightly higher average cost at $3.67.


According to AAA, Idaho currently ranks 20th in the country for most expensive fuel.

As of Monday, April 17, the statewide average price for gas was $3.55 per gallon for regular unleaded - up 3 cents from last week, that's according to GasBuddy.

The lowest price in the state at $2.99 per gallon, while the highest was $4.29, a difference of $1.30 per gallon.

Boise gas prices, however, reflect a much thinner margin, with a difference of only 44 cents between the cheapest and most expensive gas.

According to GasBuddy's survey of 216 stations in Boise, prices are on average 12.1 cents lower than one month ago and a whopping 87 cents lower than a year ago.

AAA Idaho gas price averages:

  • Boise - $3.67
  • Coeur d'Alene - $3.52
  • Franklin - $3.66
  • Idaho Falls - $3.32
  • Lewiston - $3.49
  • Pocatello - $3.40
  • Rexburg - $3.39
  • Twin Falls - $3.61


Neighboring states are showing a similar trend in gas prices. 

Washington is our costliest neighbor, with an average of $4.50 per gallon. In Utah, the average price is $3.64, and Oregon's average cost is $3.99.

"When the floodgates open, there likely won't be much relief at the gas stations," Conde said. "It's a good idea to bundle your trips, avoid heavy traffic, and if possible, carpool to save while you can."  


As of Monday, the most expensive places to fill up are California ($4.92), Hawaii ($4.78), Arizona ($4.55), Washington ($4.50), and Nevada ($4.28). 

The cheapest gasoline can be found in Mississippi at $3.17 per gallon.

Nationally, the average price per gallon of regular unleaded rose by 7.6 cents since last Monday's report, with an average price tag of $3.65 per gallon.

The average cost is up 22.1 cents per gallon from a month ago. However, the price is still 41.2 cents lower than a year ago. This data was collected by GasBuddy from more than 11 million weekly price reports covering over 150,000 gas stations across the country.

The national cost of diesel, however, has decreased. Deisel prices are down by 0.3 cents per gallon, bringing the new average to $4.15 per gallon.

Head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, Patrick De Haan, said cost fluctuations are a reflection of the cost of oil per barrel, reaching its highest in 2023.

"While the rising price of oil is likely the largest factor in rising gas prices, seasonal impacts continue to also exert pressure on prices. With the Northeast making the final step in the transition to summer gasoline this week, states in that region should expect a sharp rise in gasoline prices over the next week or two," said De Haan.

"Every other region has already seen the final step in the transition occur, so while other areas will see prices continue to slowly rise, the Northeast is likely to see a pretty hefty jump of 15-40 cents per gallon soon. Oil prices remain a wildcard, but we're likely a few weeks away from seeing the national average peak. Whether it hits $4 per gallon or not is still perhaps a 50/50 chance."

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