Just a few months ago, analysts were worried gas prices would soar this summer, possibly topping $6 a gallon. But now that the warmer months are upon us, there’s been an abrupt about-face.

In fact, fuel prices are now falling so steadily that many experts predict that by this fall, a gallon of gas will be under $3.

Gas prices have dropped some 50 cents in less than three months, with the national average currently at $3.45 for a gallon of regular.

In Southern states like Florida, Tennessee and Texas, the news is even better — they’re averaging at or below $3.30. In South Carolina, about a third of the gas stations already have gas for less than $3 a gallon.

That’s a trend forecasters say will continue nationwide. “The market is suggesting gas below $3 by Halloween, and certainly by Thanksgiving,” said Tom Kloza of the Oil Price Information Service.

Consumer demand has been low for months, but since production has picked up, declining gas prices are reflecting the lull in demand. Now that those prices at the pump are ticking downward, road trips may be back on the agenda for many families — especially since air fares seem to be doing nothing but going up.

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