With arguably perfect weather that made it possible to spend a summer day away from home, the encouragement to get in the car and drive off on Sundays came from an unlikely place lately: the fuel pump. essence.

After months of gasoline prices skyrocketing and a record high on June 14, the average price for regular unleaded gasoline in Philadelphia fell to $4.793 a gallon on Sunday, according to AAA. A week ago, the average price for regular unleaded gasoline in the city was $4.802 per gallon, and a month ago it was $4.986 per gallon.

In South Jersey, the average price for regular unleaded was $4.658 per gallon on Sunday. A week ago it was $4.767 a gallon; and a month ago, $4,992.

Decreases measured in cents rather than dollars aren’t necessarily life changing from a household budget standpoint, but the slight dip has proven to be a psychological lift to area pumps in that at least this n was not a raise.

“I’m pretty happy. I’m not going to lie, ”said Chris LaMacchia, 27, filling up at the Sunoco station on Oregon Avenue and Front Street in South Philadelphia, where a gallon of regular fuel had gone down to an ever-higher $4,899. than the city average. .

LaMacchia, from Philadelphia, uses his own car and pays for his gas as a driver for Uber Eats, DoorDash and Amazon. He recently paid $5.30 a gallon and said the lower prices made a difference for him.

“I just hope it keeps going down,” he said.

Gasoline prices across the country have fallen in recent weeks, after hitting record highs last month. On June 14, the national average price for regular unleaded gasoline hit a record high of $5.016 per gallon. On Sunday, the national average was $4,684.

Last month, Philadelphia hit an all-time high for the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline: $5,119, more than 30 cents higher than Sunday’s average.

According to AAA, the current decline is due to the drop in the price of crude oil. On Friday, the price per barrel of crude oil was $102.73, down more than $3 from the previous week, according to the Energy Information Administration. Again, the good news is relative. Crude oil was still $30 a barrel more expensive than a year ago.

Despite steady and high demand for crude oil, the price has fallen on the possibility that rising interest rates and inflation will slow economic growth, according to AAA. Any decline in economic growth could lead to lower demand for crude oil, as well as lower prices.

Although the recent drop in gas prices has relieved motorists who have been feeling pain at the pump for months, fuel costs remain high.

A year ago, the average price of regular unleaded gasoline in Philadelphia was more than $1.50 cheaper per gallon, at $3.215. And nationally, the average price for regular unleaded gasoline was $3.143 a gallon, also more than $1.50 cheaper than it is now.

The price drop also comes after President Joe Biden called on gas stations to lower prices over the July 4 weekend.

“My message to companies that run gas stations and set prices at the pump is simple: This is a time of war and global peril,” Biden wrote in a tweet, referring to the invasion of Israel. Ukraine by Russia. “Reduce the price you charge at the pump to reflect the cost you pay for the product, and do it now.”

Gas station owners said profit margins on gasoline sales amounted to just a few cents per gallon. Most of their money comes from items such as snacks, lottery tickets or car repairs, they say.

But industry analysts say the downward trend in pump prices could be short-lived as more people hit the road during the peak summer driving season.

At Sunoco in Oregon and the Front on Sunday, customers seemed resigned to the prospect.

“To me, that’s what it is,” said Dave Horner, 52, an anesthesiologist who lives in Collingswood. “We are stuck between a rock and a hard place. We had the pandemic. We have the war in Ukraine. And it’s summer. Everyone travels.

Gasoline prices skyrocketed at other times in history, but eventually fell, he noted.

“We had that before in the 70s,” Horner said, adding, “It’s a small price to help Ukrainians.”

This article contains information from The Associated Press.