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Army and Air Force Exchange Service gas prices will drop for a second consecutive month, AAFES officials announced last week.

Still, servicemembers in Germany, England and the Netherlands will pay about 24 cents more at the pump than they did in January 2002.

On Jan. 1, gas prices at Army and Air Force bases in many European locations will drop an average of 5 cents per gallon, according to Maj. Mitch Edgar, AAFES-Europe spokesman.

The new prices for fuel in England, Germany and the Netherlands will be as follows:

Unleaded (available in Germany only), $1.53; super unleaded, $1.63; super unleaded plus, $1.72; and diesel, $1.57.

Since Turkey and the Azores operate on one-year contracts, fuel prices there are unchanged, Edgar said.

“What this means is that if people can wait until after the first of the year to buy more fuel coupons, they’ll save a few dollars,” Edgar said. “It’s a significant drop in price.”

Army and Air Force Exchange Service has used Department of Energy averages to calculate its gas prices each month since December 2001, Edgar said.

Since the new policy was adopted, the price for gasoline has changed each month. The price dropped five times between January-December, with the period from January to February 2002 showing the biggest price drop at about 7 cents.

Additionally, the price per gallon — although it has increased 24 cents over the year, still is lower than the $1.74 charged for unleaded fuel at AAFES pumps before the procedure change, Edgar said.

The most significant price increase was from March to April when the per gallon cost went up about 13 cents.

AAFES gas prices reflect the Energy Department average plus disbursement fees, which covers printing fuel coupons, processing the coupons and paying select European fuel stations to process the coupons, Edgar said.

He added that the policy of basing fuel costs on Energy Department averages ensures a fair cost to customers in Europe.

“As a government entity, it’s only natural that we would use a benchmark recognized nationally,” he said. “The Department of Energy takes all fluctuations across the United States and averages them. This is a good benchmark, instead of AAFES saying we’ll use the prices you see in Atlanta. This procedure is fair and equitable.”


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