Waterloo region gas prices reach new heights. Here's what drivers are paying

Ontario motorists saw another record rise at the pumps Friday morning – and at least one industry analyst thinks things are going to get “lot more painful for drivers” over the coming weeks.

Gasbuddy.com showed gas prices across Kitchener-Waterloo ranging from $1.90 to $1.95 per litre Friday.

That’s up about 50 per cent since last May when drivers were paying around $1.30 per litre to fill up.

Many drivers who spoke to CTV Kitchener on Friday were not happy about the increase, but say they expected it and it seems to be part of the times now.

“I just graduated from university, so I’m very broke and it’s not fun,” Anna Najcler said while pumping gas in Waterloo.

Najcler said she tries to walk when she can to save money, but her partner lives in Toronto and the high prices keep her from visiting more often.

“I can't afford to come up this weekend. So he'll either have to bus down or we'll just have to see each other next weekend, until I get paid and can afford gas,” Najcler said.

Some motorists CTV spoke to say the prices are causing them to even rethink some summer vacation plans.

“To just drive to the grocery shop, to drive to school, it’s very hard, Yesmeen BakhBakhi said while pumping gas in Waterloo on Friday. “If you want to go for a vacation plan to Montreal that's like $500.”

“Unfortunately, there's places you have to go. But you kind of limit your places to go to,” Dianne Griffin said who was also filling up in Waterloo.

Some drivers hope the upcoming election will result in lower gas prices, but Griffin wants a limit to how high they can go.

“The government should be putting a cap on the on the gas prices. It's ridiculous,” Griffin said.

PRICES COULD HIT $2.01 SUNDAY

But analyst Dan McTeague, president of Canadians for Affordable Energy, says this is just the beginning of the price hikes.

McTeague released figures Friday afternoon predicting gas prices at some Ontario stations could hit $2.01 on Sunday.

Earlier in the week he said a decision by the European Union to ban the purchase of Russian oil by the end of the year will likely push costs up, as will the eventual lifting of COVID-19 lockdowns in China which have been keeping demand lower.

McTeague says an ongoing diesel shortage in the U.S. northeast is also worrisome as some refineries may think twice about producing gasoline so that they can concentrate on diesel production.

“This is going to get a lot more painful. And it’s going to be a lot more long lasting. There really isn’t anything in sight that would cause these prices to drop,” McTeague said Wednesday.

He adds summer demand kicks into high gear over May long weekend, which again can drive up costs.