As gas prices fall, travelers hit the road

      EUGENE, Ore. - A year ago, a gallon of gasoline cost $4.10.

      This week, prices are hovering around $3.57.

      Gas station attendent Shane Miller sees the difference.

      "When prices are lower, people tend to fill up more because they feel they're getting a better deal," he said. "When the prices go up even a nickel or dime, I start to notice that people are only getting 5 to 10 dollars."

      The American Automobile Association said they expect the trend to continue.

      And when fuel costs are lower, drivers tend to travel more by car.

      "We'd be much more likely to go to the hot spring or the coast if we didn't have to factor in a whole meal's worth basically because of gas," said Michael Thorne.

      That's key for the local tourism economy. Most tourists travel to this area by car, said Lisa Lawton with Travel Lane County.

      "We are a huge drive market," she said. "The idea of paying less at the pump is a great travel incentive, and it's a great time of year to travel to our destination."

      By the holidays, AAA predicts gas prices could drop by more than 20 cents in this area.

      Putting downward pressure on the price of gas are an abundant supply, lower oil costs and more efficient cars, AAA said.