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Will surging gas prices sink West Michigan summer boating?

Gas Buddy predicts the national average will hover near $4.65 a gallon around Memorial Day Weekend.

MUSKEGON, Mich. — Surging gas prices remain the focus for millions of Americans with summer travel plans.

Come Memorial Day Weekend, Gas Buddy predicts Grand Rapids will come in just under the national average of $4.65 and that $5.00 may be within reach.

A major impact on the road, but what about taking the boat out this summer?

Memorial Day traditionally marks the beginning of boating season in West Michigan.

Muskegon’s Aquastar Cruises told 13 ON YOUR SIDE it was weighing a gas surcharge for its private trips this summer.

No decision had been reached at the time of publication.

Lake Express Ferry, which makes daily trips between Muskegon and Wisconsin didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Muskegon-based Third Coast Rentals, however, said its fuel prices were fixed. Apart from a slight boost in the overall price year-over-year, a rental today will cost what it did yesterday.

“We try to make it minimal,” Owner Jeremy Reister related. “We want to be able to allow everybody to come out and enjoy the water, not just those that have more funds… it will be the same cost as it will be at the end of the summer. We’re not going to raise prices throughout the summer and hope and pray it works out for everybody.”

Reister also owns West Michigan Boat Rentals and said the company maintains the same policy.  

RELATED: Don't Get A BUI This Memorial Day!

The Muskegon Area Visitor’s Bureau dispelled worries far fewer tourists would make the trip given surging fuel prices. Most, it said, plan these trips well in advance and won’t likely cancel if it can be avoided.

More context from Gas Buddy, which revealed most Americans planned to restrict summer travel to trips under two hours from home.

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