From driving less to doing less, students are trying to combat increasing gas prices.
Across the country, Americans have witnessed a rise in fuel prices. In the Great Lakes Bay Region, the average price for regular unleaded is $3.84, an eight-cent drop from a week ago. Both students and faculty members driving to campus have had to face additional strain on their finances.
“I’ve cut back quite a bit on entertainment,” said Nick Buggia, political science and English junior.
“You just don’t get to go out as much and can’t do as much socially.”
Buggia, like the majority of SVSU students, does not live on campus. Living in Mayville, Buggia drives roughly 45 minutes one way to get to class. Even with a vehicle that gets decent mileage, Buggia said fills up his gas tank at least twice a week.
“It costs me about $60 each time I fill up,” Buggia said.
Even for students who live in Saginaw, the steady increase in gas prices has had a significant impact on their lives.
“It costs money to go anywhere or do anything and with the price of gas, you have less money to do stuff,” said Greg Strand, criminal justice senior.
Strand lives less than 10 minutes from campus and doesn’t look to fill up every time he’s at the pump.
“I usually stop three times a week and only put in $10 at a time,” he said.
Besides commuting to class, Strand said going home on weekends is expensive, driving more than an hour from Saginaw to Ithaca.
Graphic design junior Stephen Fitch understands that gas prices are high, but said you don’t need to stop going places.
“You just need to drive and think economically,” Fitch said. “Just make your trips meaningful and don’t waste trips.”
Fitch commutes from Bridgeport and said that because of his 20-minute drive to campus, he plans ahead and tries his best to be efficient.
“I just plan ahead for my week or weekends,” Fitch said. “If you want to hang out with friends over the weekend, you don’t need to make needless trips to buy needless things during the week.”
Commuters also believe in different reasons for why the price of gas has been steadily increasing during the last few years.
Buggia suggested a combination of foreign and domestic issues have resulted in the price of fuel.
“Here at home we have a lot of restrictions on where we can drill for oil,” he said. “That and you throw in the tension in the Middle East and the price is going to keep going up.”
Fitch voiced that the government needed to do more to utilize the oil in and around the United States.
“You can blame the oil companies for the high prices,” he said.
He said he thought the government being afraid to step on toes of environmental groups to drill in America was also a factor.