a man fills up his car at a gas station
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
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Gas prices average $4.88 across Santa Cruz County

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Summer is upon us, and for many that means filling up the car for a road trip. Lookout is bringing you the latest on what’s happening with gas prices across Santa Cruz County, in partnership with Stacker.

Gas prices averaged $4.88 per gallon across Santa Cruz County on Monday, down slightly from the previous week when the average gallon cost $4.92, per to the latest data from AAA.

Last week, according to Stacker, the national average was between $3 and $4.

Raj Raj, who works the cash register at the 76 gas station on Soquel Avenue in Santa Cruz, said that last Tuesday, the price of a gallon of regular gas at 76 went down by 5 cents, to $4.79. He said he saw more people coming that day as a result.

Sonny Asaria, manager at the Westside Santa Cruz Valero location, on Mission Street, said prices went down at his gas station this Monday from the previous week. He estimated that he saw around 60 more customers than last Monday due to the price drop. But Asaria said he also attributed the increase in customers to the weather.

“The sun is shining, that’s why,” he said.

Generally, gas prices have gone down since this time last year, when buying a regular gallon of gas in Santa Cruz would have cost nearly $1.60 more.

Gas prices spiked last year amid fears that Western sanctions against Russia over the invasion of Ukraine could curb global oil supply. In Santa Cruz County, gas prices peaked at $6.50 just over a year ago, on June 14, 2022. The average price of diesel was $5.49 on Monday, down from a high of $7.11 on June 16, 2022.

Fears over Russian oil-supply restrictions have since waned. Oil prices dipped Monday over concerns about a slowing Chinese economy, according to Reuters.

— Beki San Martin contributed to this report.