Gas prices have risen over the past month, and prices have been predicted to shoot even higher for the main driving season - summer. Would the spike have a positive or negative effect on New Jersey business?

Lavallettee shore house

At the shore, officials have expressed hope that folks would choose to stay and play in New Jersey, instead of heading out on that lengthy road trip.

"We can give them a great vacation in New Jersey, a tank of gas away, and I think that's important given the prices are going up," said Grace Hanlon with the Division of Travel and Tourism for the State of New Jersey.

She continued, "We do have competition in New York and Maryland and Virginia, but with the price of gas going up, people are going to be much more likely to stay in New Jersey."

Reports of shore rentals have already shown a spike from the same time last year. Also, Hanlon said many vacationers renewed their rentals last year when leaving the shore.

In Monmouth County alone, more than 400 requests have come in this year about local vacations.

While Hanlon could not speak for every rental property along the Jersey shore, she said rental prices appear to be about the same as last year.

Beyond the threat of higher gas prices, the real estate industry said the mild winter has allowed people to take trips to the shore and see which properties available. Last year around this time, they may have still been buried in snow.

Overall, Hanlon said the rental outlook is promising at the shore.

"I'm really excited about the momentum we have going on right now," she said.


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