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Soaring gas prices cracking Easter travel plans

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — With many folks getting the day off for Good Friday, this holiday weekend is usually a big one for highway travel. But with gas prices nearing $4 per gallon, many folks have altered their travel plans.

“I honestly can’t stand the high prices,” Joy Johnston said today in Calabash. “It takes my whole entire paycheck just to get from home to and from work. It’s ridiculous, and they are going up every single day.”

Johnston says she’s happy she’s close to family this Easter.

We spoke with lots of folks at the pumps today, many of whom were locals, a sign perhaps that high prices are keeping people off the roads.

While gas prices in North Carolina are inching ever closer to that dreaded $4 mark, just minutes across the border in South Carolina, prices are about ten cents cheaper. The extra taxes we face in the Tar Heel State are forcing business out.

“Every time I get my paycheck, I go straight up across the line,” Johnston said.

Driver Benjamin Duncan agreed.

“That’s what I normally do. I usually either go to Loris from where I live, or I go right here to Little River,” he said.

Economists suggest prices won’t stop here and could be near $4.25 by summer.

“The fuel is tacked on to the cost of everything, so the cost of everything is going up,” traveler Janine Oaster said.

Duncan said, “I don’t go out like I used to. I kind of have to stay at home, and I have to live cheaper because of the gas prices.”

“You buy groceries, and that takes all your money. Gas takes all your money,” Johnston said. “You really just try to sit at home and watch TV half the time. There’s not much you can do as far as going out on the weekends. It really cramps everybody’s style.”

The average price of gas in North Carolina is about $3.90. That’s about a quarter higher than a year ago, and about a dollar more than this same time in 2010.

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