Holiday Travelers to Save $140 Million Thanks to Ethanol
After COVID disrupted holiday plans for millions of Americans in 2020 and 2021, families are looking forward to gathering for Thanksgiving and resuming their pre-pandemic traditions this year. AAA predicts that 54.6 million people will travel 50 miles or more from home for the holiday, approximately 90% of them by car. Given that retail gasoline prices hit a record $5 per gallon this summer and current gas prices are $0.30-0.40 per gallon above year-ago levels, travel costs remain a primary concern.
The good news is that ethanol is helping save consumers money this holiday season, as it has been doing all year. In fact, analysis by the Renewable Fuels Association suggests that the presence of ethanol in our nation’s gasoline is expected to save Thanksgiving travelers nearly $140 million on gasoline purchases over the long holiday weekend. 
Based on the most recent monthly data, E10, a 10% ethanol blend that is prevalent at gas stations nationwide, is saving drivers $0.32 per gallon at the pump.  The discount has averaged $0.23 per gallon since January—on pace to reduce Americans’ spending on gasoline by $34 billion, or $240 per household, for the year as a whole.
The discount is even greater for E15, a 15% ethanol blend that is approved for more than 95% of the cars and trucks on the road today. According to E15prices.com, the national average retail price of E15 has been $0.35 per gallon less than E10 this year (the differential stood at $0.38 on November 16). If E15 were adopted nationwide, it would reduce household spending on gasoline by $47 billion this year, or almost $370 per household. And, as recently noted by EIA, E15 helped keep a lid on pump prices in the summer of 2022, as the market faced tight fuel supplies and record-high prices.
There are many things for which Americans can be thankful at this time of year—one of those is ethanol, which lowers prices at the pump and is better for the environment. The U.S. ethanol industry is proud to help make it more affordable for families to gather together for Thanksgiving this year.
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 Assumes 48.7 million travelers by automobile (AAA); 214 miles per holiday trip (U.S. DOT/BTS); average fuel economy of 25 miles per gallon (EPA); savings attributable to ethanol are $0.33 per gallon (weighted effect of E10, E15, and E85).
 RFA analysis of Nebraska Energy Office rack price data for Omaha through October.