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Locals pumped about prices

More families can afford to travel for the holidays as gas prices continue to fall

Posted: December 8, 2008 9:05 p.m.
Updated: December 9, 2008 4:55 a.m.

Tetyana Shavez fills up her SUV on her way to visit friends in Beverly Hills. Shavez is happy about the lower gas prices since she is now able to fill up her Cadillac Escalade for less than $50 per tank.

At least one local family will be spending less on fuel and more on festivities.

Narcy Nava, 33, of Santa Clarita, said decreasing gas prices help her to save a lot of money when filling up her Nissan Sentra. She said her family would use the extra money for Christmas presents and a trip to Orange County.

"My husband and I both use gas, so it's definitely a savings," she said. I hope it stays for a while like this, but I know it's going to go back up eventually."

A national survey shows the average price of gas fell 22 cents a gallon during the past two weeks, bringing it to its lowest level in nearly five years, oil industry analyst Trilby Lundberg said.

The average price of regular gasoline in the Los Angeles area on Friday was $1.912 per gallon, 19.7 cents less than the previous week and 90 cents lower than November, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California.

On Monday, drivers pumped regular unleaded gas for $1.69 per gallon at the Arco gas station on Pico Canyon Road. Others filled up with regular gas for $1.87 per gallon at the Shell gas station on The Old Road.

Tetyana Shavez, 27, was driving her Cadillac Escalade from Modesto to Los Angeles to visit friends.

"I'm very happy that I can afford gas, because I have a big car," Shavez said. "I love the gas prices. I'm so excited, it's just so convenient. (It was) like $100 to fill up and now it's $45. I love it. It definitely gives the freedom of traveling."

Other drivers said they do not feel the direct effects of lowering gas prices.

"It hasn't really changed my schedule," said Roksana Zeinapur, 24, from Sherman Oaks. "I'm just spending less money."

Tim Gibson, 47, of Valencia, said the lower cost to fill up his Mercedes doesn't substantially affect his life.

"I have the luxury of a lifestyle where gas prices don't really affect how I live," he said.

Alfred Tuzo, 26, of Castaic, said the gas prices will allow him to travel more in his Chrysler Prowler sports car.

"When gas was up to $4-something, it stopped me from going out of town," he said. "(Before) if I wanted to go to Vegas or something, I probably wouldn't do it because it would cost too much. Now, the way gas prices are, I can go anywhere."

The last time gas was cheaper than its current price was in March 2004, when the national average for regular was $1.74 a gallon. The all-time high was on July 11, 2008, when the price peaked at $4.11 a gallon.

The Associated Press Contributed to this report.


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