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Falling gas prices aid holiday trips
For 17-year-old Josh Tate, a few cents off a gallon of gasoline may not mean big savings when puttering around town.

But when he drives to northern Wisconsin this Christmas break to visit his mother, the lower price will be easier on his wallet, and appreciated.

"I've noticed it going down a little bit, and I hope it goes down some more," Tate said Friday when filling up his white sedan at Parker's on the F.J. Torras Causeway at U.S. 17, Brunswick.

A gallon of regular gasoline cost him $3.19, keeping in line with the national average price.

"It's definitely worth it to me when filling up, to go for the cheaper gas, because Wisconsin is so far away," Tate said.

Tate and scores of other Glynn County residents who plan to travel during the holidays will have a lot of company on the road.

AAA Auto Club predicts the Christmas travel season could be the busiest it has been in six years, said spokeswoman Jessica Brady.

"AAA is predicting that 93.3 million Americans will travel between Dec. 22 and Jan. 1," Brady said. "That's 1.6 percent more than last year and only 400,000 less than the 2006 record."

AAA estimates the national average gasoline price will drop through the remainder of 2012 to between $3.20 and $3.40 a gallon.

"Gas prices dropped about 50 cents a gallon on average from September through early December but remain at record highs for this time of year," Brady said.

AAA doesn't expect gas prices to have a major impact on travel volume.

"The year-end holiday season remains the least volatile of all travel holidays as Americans will not let economic conditions or high gas prices dictate if they go home for the holidays or kick off the New Year with a vacation," said AAA President and CEO Robert Darbelnet.

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