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The Impact of Gas Prices

By: Stephen McLamb
By: Stephen McLamb

Knoxville (WVLT) - Like a see-saw, gas prices are on their way back down in East Tennessee.

In many places, you can find gas under two-bucks a gallon.

So how are delivery based businesses dealing with the rise and fall of prices.

Well, a lot of the businesses don't like having to put on delivery costs. But some say that now gas is on the decline they're hoping to reduce if not eliminate those costs.

Gas prices go up and now they're going down. So how hard is it for those businesses who deliver? At Flowers and Such, they began getting hit with delivery costs from their suppliers when gas was three dollars a gallon.

"We actually went up to $7.99 for delivery charge because of that," says Jun Salinas, Flowers and Such Owner.

But gas is on the way down which could be good for florists as they take a new look at delivery costs.

"We're actually thinking of, especially this coming Valentines season, that we are going to go and drop the prices of delivery," says Salinas.

At Papa Johns in Maryville, they've also gotten hit with delivery costs from suppliers. They've tried to fight it but gave up this past year.

"We added a dollar delivery charge which we give to the driver and everything to help them make up for that fuel cost. It's something we fought against. That's why we just did it eight months ago," says Dan Turner, manager at Papa Johns.

Although not there yet, as the price of gas goes down the future could be promising.

"All these costs drop a little bit and hopefully soon we'll drop our delivery charge and then go back to the way everything was," Turner says.

"The flat rates. How do you set them with the gas prices the way they are? It just fluctuates too much," says Steve Spague, from Odyssey Airport Taxi.

But the fluctuations are especially tough on airport taxi drivers who's rates are set by two local governmental boards.

Sprague says increases and decreases take three to six months, which is difficult to explain to customers.

"Some people complain but most people, you just say 'gas', and they understand," Sprague says.

Salinas says he plans to consider reducing his delivery costs in a few weeks when it gets a little closer to Valentines Day.

For Turner, he says thanks to the charitable giving of customers a tip to their drivers they've been able to keep costs down.


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