Relentless gas prices are crushing small business budgets

QUINCY, Mass. — The price of gas has broken a record again. AAA reports the average price of regular unleaded gas in Massachusetts is $4.60. Diesel average is $6.37. At the same time we are getting into peak driving season which is increasing demand.

The flower delivery businesses right now isn’t exactly coming up roses. Tony Tangney delivers for Fabiano Florist in Quincy. “Gas prices are crazy,” said Tangney, “pretty soon it’s going to be $5 a gallon. I can’t believe it. It’s hard to believe”

Annette Holmes is one of the owners at Fabiano Florist. “My delivery charge used to be $12.50, now I’m up to $17 and that’s just, I hate it. To go to Quincy but you have to,” said Holmes. “I take all my deliveries and try to keep my route as short as possible,” said Tangney. “We don’t go the distance like we used to. To go to Kingston now is expensive so it’s not really worth it,” said Holmes.

Deric Lipski, aka “Mr. Sold”, sells homes for a living. “We drive anywhere from 25-35 thousand miles per year in this business,” said Lipski, “I’m going about $125-$130 three times a week”

[ Record high: Mass. gas prices are now $1.69 higher than a year ago ]

Lipski says they do try to cut down on trips but those in person visits are critical. “You can’t sell someone’s house over the phone you have to be there and talk to them. They want to see what you are about and judge you,” said Lipski.

While business is booming now, owners have concerns about the long term effects of the gas prices. “I haven’t rent out the moped yet but certainly switching to EV is coming a lot more attractive,” said Lipski. “It’s getting out of control, really is,” said Holmes.

AAA telling says they are beginning to see the impact to driving habits, people making decisions not to drive as often or as far. But at the same time they say there was so much pent up demand for travel after the pandemic.

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