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Another Holding Pattern for Gas Prices Before Holiday Travel

(LOS ANGELES, Dec. 17, 2009) –Gas prices have spent December going nowhere fast so far, giving holiday travelers no big break at the pump as they get ready for vacations, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California’s Weekend Gas Watch.

The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area is $2.923 per gallon, which is eight-tenths of a cent less than last week, 4.8 cents less than last month, and $1.20 higher than last year. In San Diego, the price is $2.913, which is one cent lower than last week’s price, 4.1 cents below last month, and $1.19 higher than last year. On the Central Coast, the average price is $2.978, down a penny from last week, 7.7 cents lower than a month ago, and $1.20 above last year. In the Inland Empire, the average per gallon price is $2.909, which is seven-tenths of one cent less than last week, 4.8 cents less than last month, and $1.21 more than last year.

“Holiday travelers will spend $1.15 to $1.20 more per gallon of gas than at this time last year, adding $11 to $12 to the cost of a 10-gallon fill-up compared to last December,” said Auto Club spokesperson Jeffrey Spring. “It’s pretty clear we’ll be starting 2010 with a much higher gas price level than at the beginning of 2009. That could be bad news for consumers if prices follow their typical pattern of rising from their low point in January and never quite dropping back to that level throughout the year.”

The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline. As of 1 p.m. on Dec. 17, averages are:
Record Price
Los Angeles – Long Beach
    -0.8 cent
 $4.626 (6/21/08)
Orange County
    -0.8 cent
 $4.598 (6/19/08)
San Diego
    -1.0 cent
 $4.630 (6/19/08)
Santa Barbara – Santa Maria – Lompoc
    -1.0 cent
 $4.709 (6/21/08)
Riverside – San  Bernardino
     -0.7 cent
 $4.614 (6/22/08)
     -0.7 cent
 $4.591 (6/24/08)
     -0.5 cent
 $4.625 (6/18/08)

Media Contacts

Marie Montgomery
(714) 420-0477 (cell)

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The Automobile Club of Southern California is a member club affiliated with the American Automobile Association (AAA) national federation and serves members in the following California counties: Inyo, Imperial, Kern, Los Angeles, Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Tulare, and Ventura.