Coronavirus Charity: Columbia, South Carolina Gas Station Owner Cuts Prices Even Lower

Downtown Amoco is selling gas for less than a dollar per gallon …

One of the only economic bright spots from the cataclysmic fallout of the 2019-2020 coronavirus has been lower fuel prices. The lack of domestic demand – combined with an ongoing global price war – has pushed already low prices even lower.

If only people were driving, right?

According to the latest data from AAA, the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in South Carolina currently stands at $1.69 – which is $0.44 below where it was a month ago and $0.78 less than the same point in time a year ago.

That is the fourteenth-lowest price in the nation … although as we have often noted, disproportionately poor South Carolinians tend to pay a higher percentage of their incomes on fuel costs than residents of other states.

This week, one South Carolina gas station owner is cutting these already low prices even further.

Rick Patel – who owns the Amoco convenience store at the corner of Bull and Gervais streets in the heart of downtown Columbia, S.C. – has slashed gas prices to just $0.99 for a gallon of regular unleaded at this location.

That’s right … Patel is selling gas for less than a dollar per gallon, or $0.70 per gallon lower than the current statewide average.

Take a look …

(Click to view)


Wow … we cannot recall the last time we saw a gas station marquee boasting prices that low.

“We are doing this to help our community during these hard times,” Patel told us.

Additionally, Patel’s Amoco store – which is located close to two Richland county hospitals – will be providing free coffee to health care workers.

Patel told us he hopes to run the gasoline promotion through the end of the week.

Good for him. At the beginning of this crisis, we posted a lengthy column advising our readers of the importance of giving to those in need during these challenging and uncertain times.

“We can feed each other … or we can eat each other,” we noted in that post.

Props to Patel for choosing the former … and here’s hoping more people follow his lead. In fact, if you have a story of people giving back to others during these tough times – or ideas how people could give back if they are so inclined – hit us up on the tip line.


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