Gas pump. Photo credit: Alexander Nguyen

Get your wallet out or stay home and go out only if you need to.

However, if you don’t mind spending more on gas the average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in San Diego County rose Saturday to its highest amount since July 18, 2015, increasing seven-tenths of a cent to $4.209.

The average price has risen 34 of the past 39 days, increasing 17.1 cents, including six-tenths of a cent Friday, according to figures from the AAA and Oil Price Information Service. It is 2.4 cents higher than one week ago, 11.8 cents more than one month ago and $1.255 greater than one year ago.

The average price has risen 123 of the past 135 days, increasing 86.2 cents, and 98.2 cents since the start of the year.

The large price increase from one year ago is the result of a significant decrease during the early stage of the coronavirus pandemic, when driving and demand dropped substantially because of stay-at-home orders intended to reduce the spread of the virus.

“Relaxation of pandemic restrictions is the biggest factor continuing to drive up prices,” said Jeffrey Spring, the Automobile Club of Southern California’s corporate communications manager.

“However, according to the latest California Energy Commission report, refineries are increasing both their production and inventories of California-blend gasoline, so the increases may soon be at an end.”

–City News Service

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