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Auto Club: Gas Price Averages Plummet Below $6 In Biggest One-Week Decline Ever Recorded

Sunrise at gas station by Don DeBold
Photo by Don DeBold by/4.0/

Southern California gas prices declined at their fastest pace ever recorded in the last week, plunging by 30 cents or more on average in most areas, according to the Auto Club’s Weekend Gas Watch. The average price for self-serve regular gasoline in California is $5.88, which is 32 cents lower than last week. The average national price is $3.84, which is seven cents lower than a week ago.

The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area is $5.93 per gallon, which is 33 cents lower than last week, 47 cents higher than last month, and $1.40 higher than last year. In San Diego, the average price is $5.87, which is 33 cents lower than last week, 45 cents higher than last month, and $1.40 higher than last year.

On the Central Coast, the average price is $5.88, which is 30 cents lower than last week, 42 cents higher than last month, and $1.41 higher than last year. In Riverside, the average per-gallon price is $5.79, which is 35 cents lower than last week, 46 cents higher than last month, and $1.36 higher than a year ago. In Bakersfield, the $6.04 average price is 20 cents lower than last Thursday, 62 cents higher than last month, and $1.60 higher than a year ago today.

“Despite the large price declines of the past two weeks, average prices still need to drop by about 60 cents to completely erase the local gas price spike of September and early October,” said Auto Club spokesperson Doug Shupe. “Los Angeles wholesale gas prices did increase this week, possibly on reports of two refineries having short-term maintenance issues, but at this point wholesale prices remain low enough that the September-October pump price spike can be erased. The cheapest Southern California gas stations are now charging less than $5 a gallon.”

The Auto Club reminds drivers of the following tips to save money on gas:

  • If you use premium unleaded fuel, make sure it is required for your vehicle, not just recommended. The Auto Club's Automotive Research Center found that vehicles with recommended premium fuel performed safely with regular unleaded gasoline.
  • Make sure your tires are properly maintained and inflated to the correct level.
  • Maintain your car according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Regular service will ensure optimum fuel economy.
  • Avoid “jackrabbit” starts and hard accelerations. These actions greatly increase fuel consumption.
  • Slow down and drive the speed limit. Fuel economy peaks around 50 mph on most cars, then drops off as speed increases. Reducing freeway speeds by 5 to 10 mph can increase fuel economy by as much as 14%.
  • Use cruise control on the highway to help maintain a constant speed and save fuel. However, never use cruise control on slippery roads because you could lose control of the vehicle.
  • Minimize your use of air conditioning.
  • Avoid extended idling to warm up the engine, even in colder temperatures. It’s unnecessary and wastes fuel.
  • Remove unnecessary and heavy items from your car.
  • Minimize your use of roof racks and remove special carriers when not in use.
  • Download the AAA App to find the cheapest gas prices near you. 

The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline. As of 9 a.m. on Oct. 20, averages are:

Oct 20 22


Media Contacts

Marie Montgomery
(714) 420-0477 (cell)
CST 1016202-80 Copyright © Automobile Club of Southern California. All Rights Reserved.
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.