How much are you paying for gas? The people at GasBuddy.com will tell you, and they’ll also tell you where to find the cheapest gas in your area. They’ve got a good social network/web application thing going where people around the US regularly report what gas costs near them. So, for instance, here are the prices in Watertown, Massachusetts. They’ve also got historical trend charting available, which turns up some intertesting stuff. I compared Boston to New Orleans for the past year, and I was amazed to see that Boston prices jumped 60 cents in less than a week after Katrina last August, while at the same time gas prices in Louisiana were constant. But it turns out this was more of a legal mandate than anything else… Atlanta and Houston both had the same post-hurricane spike as Boston.
The piÃ¨ce de resistance for the site, however, is the gas temperature map. Here you can see in one place, county-by-county, what the average price is for a gallon of gas anywhere in the country. It’s very entertaining to make up theories to account for the disparities. California is always most expensive because of its more demanding (and expensive) refining requirements. But what explains the difference between Wisconsin and Minnesota?