Regarding the price of fuel in Payson versus other communities, it surely seems as though Mr. Dolde is correct and we are indeed at the mercy of the local retailers selling fuel. However, Mr. Dolde apparently has not done the math or he would not recommend that we drive to Tempe to fuel up.
If Mr. Dolde works in Tempe and he drives down there and back every day, fueling in Tempe would work well for him, but for the rest of us, it does not pencil out.
Assuming your car gets 25 mpg, either uphill or downhill, and you put in only enough fuel to get to Tempe from Payson, which would be 3.4 gallons, you will spend $11.80 for fuel to drive to Tempe at $3.47/gal. Further assuming your fuel tank holds 20 gallons and you top it off, you will spend $62.20 to fill it up at $3.11/gal.
If you would have filled up in Payson, you would have spent $69.40. So, in theory, you “saved” $7.20. However, it cost you $10.57 to drive back to Payson, so your actual “savings” is a negative $3.37, and for that all you had to do to spend more money on fuel was drive 170 non-productive miles, and waste three to four hours of your time, and this does not include the other costs to operate your vehicle.
Now, I do not know about you, but I am not willing to drive an extra 170 miles to pay $3.37 more for fuel than I would by filling up at home, even though I do very much resent the high fuel prices.
I am self-employed and I drive 50,000 to 60,000 miles per year in my business, with frequent trips to other states where fuel can, and does, cost more, and less, than in Payson. I have paid as much as $5.60/gal for fuel (diesel) in California and as little as $3.46/gal in Arizona, for the same fuel, between February and October of 2008 and if there is a way that I can have an impact on fuel prices I will certainly entertain any ideas because my fuel bill for two vehicles is averaging $1,700 per month, and I would definitely like to reduce that cost.
I will add that last Friday I paid $4.10/gal for fuel in Payson, at the Chevron station, then $3.50/gal in Lordsburg, N.M., also at Chevron, then $3.46/gal in Globe, at the Shell station (Chevron was the same price however) and all on the same day. That is 64 cents per gallon more in Payson than in Globe. Go figure!
So, I too think that we are getting severely ripped off by our local fuel retailers simply because they have a captive clientele up here in “The Cool Mountain Town” of Payson.
What say you Mr. Retailer? Is there a legitimate reason you charge 64 cents per gallon more in Payson than they do over in Globe?
Or have you just got caught gouging us?