Consumers will get a break as they set out on their holiday travel plans.
After climbing 10 cents in a week earlier this month, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline has slipped more than 11 cents over the past seven days, settling at nearly $3.31 for a statewide average on Thursday, according to AAA.
Just this spring, some pundits predicted prices might top $5 this summer. But a steady decline in recent months has dropped prices back below year-ago levels and has indicated that prices may have peaked for the season.
While consumers aren't dancing in the streets when a gallon of gasoline still costs more than a Happy Meal, at least they're still paying less than it costs to buy a grande mocha coconut frappuccino. The 16-ounce drink would set you back $4.82.
Some enterprising inventors have modified vehicles to run on fry grease and other products. I don't see a market for chocolate coffee-fueled cars as one gallon of the grande mocha coconut frappuccino would cost a whopping $38.56.
The recent decrease in gasoline prices is fueled in part by the recent decline in oil prices, which is bad news for the state economy and the thousands of jobs at the energy companies that have spent billions of dollars to change their strategy and look for oil instead of natural gas.
But one benefit is that consumers can enjoy the savings for Fourth of July travel.
If you're traveling outside the metro area, you might want to check an online site first to decide where to fill up.
As is often the case, prices vary widely from city to city and from corner to corner. Websites and apps are available to help you choose which station to visit.
While it's generally not a good idea to drive many miles out of your way to save a couple of pennies per gallon, mapping out the best location along your planned route could lead to significant savings.
If you're headed up the turnpike, it might be best to wait to fill up. The average price in Tulsa is almost $3.19 a gallon, about a dime lower than the Oklahoma City average of $3.29.
Prices are even lower south of the Red River, with an average price of $3.17 in Dallas.
State and metro area average prices are available at AAA's fuelgaugereport.com.
More specific information is available online at OklahomaCityGasPrices.com or its affiliate GasBuddy.com.
The site shows me that the least expensive stations in town are not close to my house, but there is a station nearby selling gasoline for $3.09 a gallon, or 20 cents below the citywide average. The cheapest price in the area is $2.95 at NW 63 and Meridian Avenue. The highest price is $3.53 in Norman.
GasBuddy.com provides information on some of the highest and lowest priced stations in most metropolitan areas throughout the country. GasBuddy and other groups also have iPhone and Android apps that can give you the same information while you're on the road.