Increasing gas prices fuel problems for teens


Julia Rhodie

This gas station in Belmont, Calif. shows average gas prices per gallon for different types of gasoline.

Julia Rhodie, Staff Writer

For adults with full-time careers, a spike in gas prices is frustrating yet manageable. However, teenagers across the Bay Area are struggling to fund their transportation.

Gas prices in the Bay Area are reaching $4 per gallon, surpassing the national average of $2.90 per gallon by almost 30 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Because of this, many teenagers have sought out employment opportunities with salaries sufficient enough to face this spike.

“I work weekend shifts at California Pizza Kitchen, so I use my paychecks and tips to pay for gas,” Ashley Marchi, a senior, said.

The Bay Area’s hefty gas prices have caused the freedom of a driver’s license to come with added responsibility.

“My parents want me to pay for gas because they want me to act more like an adult and pay for my own things since college is coming,” Daniel Friis, a senior, said.

Although many upperclassmen are having to face the reality of adulthood as it peers around the corner, typical teenage activities such as dining out with friends or shopping have come to a halt.  

I watch my money when I am buying other things like food and necessities because I know that I need to save a good amount to pay for gas,” Friis said.

Kaylee Leong, a senior who pays for her own gas, said, “$27 to $30 a week is a ‘good amount’ of money to spend on gas.”

To combat this issue, teenagers have found loopholes to spend less money on gas. Rather than going to the nearest gas station, some teenagers scout out the cheapest gas station with reasonable distance from their house.

“I try to find the cheapest gas station near me,” Taryn Scholss, a junior, said.

Regardless of the cost, gas remains a necessity for teenagers with cars. Although prices continue to raise, some have found that there are benefits of paying for their own gas.

Over time, I have grown to dislike paying for my own gas less because it teaches me how to manage my money and be responsible. Overall, it’s something I do not love doing, but I know that I have to do it,” Friis said.