Gas prices are on the decline across the United States and one local business has hit the lowest mark the valley has seen in years. The ARCO AM/PM in the Canyon Plaza Shopping Center in Cathedral City prides itself in offering low gas per gallon, but even they outdid themselves going below a milestone number, leaving their customers pumped at the pump. “It’s pretty exciting, I saw it on facebook, and I was like, ‘I’m going to come here and get some gas,'” said gas customer Rubi Acevedo. It’s the reaction we all have when seeing low numbers at the pump, but the parking lot at the AM/PM resembled more of a retailer amidst Black Friday deals. $1.99 per gallon was the magic number that put cars in line, bringing the excitement to buy gas for under two dollars a gallon.
“$1.99? It’s a great price,” said Acevedo. “I’m telling friends, ‘hey come over here and pump gas before it goes up’. it’s pretty exciting.” Co-owner of the ARCO in Cathedral City, Paul Marcinkowski, has dropped his prices before, but this move has gained the most buzz in years. “We were the first ones to go below three dollars, and we said, let’s be the first to go below two dollars again and just create that excitement,” said Marcinkowski. He and his wife have owned the gas station since June of 2014 and were relegated to traffic cops on Thursday, weaving cars through lanes to take advantage of the low prices. The ARCO AM/PM in Cathedral City has the lowest mark for unleaded regular gas in all of Riverside County, and one of only two businesses offering $1.99 in the whole state. That number is the lowest some customers remember seeing in years. “You know, I was thinking about this last night when i posted this exact station on Facebook,” said customer Rick Licause. “And I don’t remember it. So, it’s been years.”
The Inland Empire’s average has dropped to $2.53 per gallon, a near-six-year low. And the price drop is felt across the nation due to the plumetting stock in crude oil. Customers are happy about the change because the more cash consumers save means more cash to spend elsewhere. “You know, it’s an extra meal out,” said Licause. “It’s an extra meal to go out to dinner in town. I mean, it gives us more money in our pockets for other things. It’s just fantastic, I hope it keeps going down. I want to see $1.50.”
The ARCO business strategy is cash or debit card only. If you do use your debit card there’s a one-time transaction fee of 35-cents.