The 10 Cities With the Highest and Lowest Gas Prices

The unrest in the Middle East has sent gas prices soaring.

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The recent unrest in the Middle East has sent gas prices soaring in the United States. In response to mounting concerns, the White House has indicated that it is considering tapping the country's Strategic Petroleum Reserve, a move that could ease prices. Data from the American Automobile Association shows that, while gas is more costly nationwide, California is hardest hit by spiking prices. Of all cities with populations over 200,000, the 10 with the highest per-gallon gasoline costs are all in California. According to the Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration, California has higher and more volatile gasoline prices than the rest of the nation due to high state and local taxes, as well as strict clean-fuel requirements that require fuel to be refined at plants far outside the state when production is disrupted at California refineries.

[See a slide show of the 10 Cities With the Highest Gas Prices.]

According to AAA data, below are the 10 cities with the most expensive gasoline in the country. The table also includes figures for some cities from GasBuddy.com, a price tracking site on which users post local gasoline prices. Prices were obtained from both sources on March 7, 2011.

City Price (AAA) Price (GasBuddy.com) 
San Diego  $3.97 $3.91
San Francisco  3.959 3.932
Oakland  3.949 3.904
Chula Vista  3.949 Not available 
Riverside  3.936 3.868
Bakersfield  3.935 3.839
Los Angeles  3.931 3.907
Irvine  3.926 Not available 
San Jose  3.921 3.904
Fresno  3.912 3.83
[See a slide show of the 10 Cities With the Lowest Gas Prices.]

Outside of California, Hawaii, Alaska, Connecticut, and New York are the states with the highest gasoline prices, with a gallon of regular gasoline costing $3.70 or more on average in all of these states. Meanwhile, states in the Midwest and West, like Colorado, Missouri, and Oklahoma, are among those with the lowest prices per gallon. Leading the pack is Aurora, Colorado, with a price of $3.26 per gallon. However, Montana and Wyoming are currently the two states with the lowest average prices, at $3.19 for a gallon of regular gasoline. Below are the 10 cities (pop. 200,000 or greater) with the lowest gas prices according to AAA, along with their latest available GasBuddy.com figures.

City Price (AAA) Price (GasBuddy.com) 
Aurora, Colorado 3.262 Not available 
Tucson, Arizona 3.264 3.276
Tulsa, Oklahoma 3.277 3.277
Denver 3.281 3.267
Colorado Springs, Colorado 3.294 3.303
Wichita, Kansas 3.306 3.315
St. Louis, Missouri 3.333 3.313
Kansas City, Missouri 3.34 3.348
Boise, Idaho 3.346 3.346
Spokane, Washington 3.359 3.352