MEMPHIS, Tenn. — With no relief in sight at the gas pump, soaring prices have some Mid-Southerners making detours in their driving habits, such as where they go and how often they can afford to hit the road.

Aubrey Smith used to travel often from Florida to Memphis, but gas prices are putting a squeeze on her spending.

“It’s here, there, and right back home. There’s no leisure time in between because it’s just not affordable for me at this point.” Smith said. “Just when we came out here seven months ago, gas cost me like $100. Now it costs me almost $300. So, it’s rough.”

As you drive through some of the busiest parts of Memphis, you’ll see gas prices slowing inching toward $5 per gallon.

Megan Cooper with the AAA said this is the second time this year that gas prices have reached record highs. The national average for a gallon of regular is now $4.96.

“It’s no secret that we are still experiencing pain at the pump. This is the second time this year we’ve broken all-time record highs for gas prices,” Cooper said.

The average gas price across Tennessee is $4.61. In Mississippi, it’s $4.49, and Arkansas is now up to $4.48. On average, that’s an increase of about 30 cents since last week.

AAA says Tennessee is the 10th least expensive market in the nation. The highest state average is California at $6.39 The lowest state average is Georgia at $4.38.

When prices first started to surge, two House Democrats called upon Gov. Bill Lee to put a 90-day freeze on gas taxes, but the governor recently said that won’t be happening.

“We are always looking for ways to give relief to Tennesseans. We’re not looking at a proposed gas tax suspension right now,” Lee said.

With the summer travel season just getting underway, demand for gasoline, coupled with the cut-off of Russian oil shipments due to the war in Ukraine, is sending oil prices higher on global markets.

“Unfortunately, it does look like it’s going to get a little bit worse before it gets better,” said Cooper.          

There is also concern that gas prices could skyrocket even higher as hurricane season ramps up, impacting refineries.

“I think the Hurricane really alters the calculus, then you get into the six-to-seven-dollar range,” said Tom Kloza with OPIS Global.

The rising price of gas is showing no signs of slowing down.

“Hopefully, at some point, they’ll start going down, but I don’t know. It’s creeping slower and slower to 5 dollars,” Smith said.