WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 7, 2022) – As the conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues, the price of crude oil continues to soar, leading to record high pump prices not seen in more than a decade. The average retail price of a gallon of regular, self-service gasoline in Washington, D.C. reached an all-time high today of $4.22, breaking the old record of $4.20, which was reached on May 12, 2011. Today’s District price is seven cents more than yesterday, 45 cents more than last week, 60 cents more than a month ago, and $1.29 more than a year ago.

Maryland’s gas price average reached an all-time high today also at $4.09 per gallon, breaking the old record of $4.04 set on June 17, 2008. Prior to yesterday, the last time Maryland’s average topped $4.00 a gallon was July 22, 2008.

The average retail price of a gallon of regular, self-service gasoline in Maryland increased five cents overnight, 50 cents in the past week, 69 cents in the past month, and is $1.32 higher than one year ago.

Nationally, the average retail price for a gallon of regular, self-service gasoline jumped six cents to $4.06 per gallon today. The national average is up 45 cents in the past week, 62 cents in the past month, and is $1.30 higher than one year ago. The national average is five cents away from the record high of $4.11, which was set on July 17, 2008.


Note: Yesterday’s chart had a typo, stating the national average was $4.09.

It was, in fact $4.00. We apologize for the error.

Regular Unleaded Gasoline (*indicates record high)

 03/07/22YesterdayWeek AgoMonth AgoYear Ago
Washington, D.C.$4.22$4.15$3.77$3.62$2.93
Bowie-St. Charles$4.12$4.05$3.59$3.41$2.77

At the close of Monday’s formal trading session, WTI increased by $3.72 to settle at $119.40. Crude prices continue to surge in response to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. As the conflict continues, the oil markets will likely respond by increasing the price of crude oil to reflect more risk of disruption to tight global oil supplies this week. Additionally, EIA reported that total domestic crude stocks decreased by 2.6 million bbl last week to 413.4 million bbl. The current stock level is approximately 15% lower than at the end of February 2021, contributing to pressure on domestic crude prices. A potential ban of crude imports from Russia to the United States or other countries will likely cause prices to continue to rise to reflect more risk of disruption to tight global oil supplies.

“As the conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues, the price of crude oil continues to climb, as well, translating to more pain at the pump for American drivers,” said Ragina Cooper Ali, spokeswoman for AAA Mid-Atlantic in Washington, D.C. and Maryland. “Unfortunately for motorists, AAA expects the upward current trend to persist, as economic indicators continue to point to higher crude oil and gasoline prices for the remainder of winter and into the spring.”

Traditionally, gas prices make significant jumps around the switch to summer blends, which occurs in March and April. The spring and summer travel seasons are also starting to heat up, which can cause prices to significantly fluctuate based on increased demand. AAA expects prices to decline as they normally would after the summer, however, if crude remains high so will price at the pump.

AAA Gas Saving Tips

Get your vehicle checked out. Perform regular car maintenance at the intervals recommended by the vehicle manufacturer in the owner’s manual or as indicated by the in-car maintenance reminder system. Did you delay regular maintenance during the pandemic because you were driving less? Now is the time to get it looked at. Find a AAA Approved Auto Repair Facility here.

Keep tires properly inflated. Under-inflated tires can decrease your gas mileage by approximately 3 percent. Not to mention, properly inflated tires are safer and last longer. Check the pressure in all four tires every two weeks with an accurate, hand-held air pressure gauge.

Know your octane. Do not purchase mid-grade or premium gas unless your owner’s manual specifically recommends it. According to AAA research, Americans waste more than $2.1 billion annually on premium gas in vehicles designed to run on regular fuel. AAA found no benefit to using premium gas instead of regular-grade fuel. At the time of the study, 70% of U.S. drivers owned a vehicle that required only regular gasoline.

Avoid idling. Idling gets zero miles per gallon. Letting your vehicle idle for more than 10 seconds uses more gas than shutting it off and restarting. Don’t start your car until you are ready to go. The engine actually warms up more quickly once the car is operating, and will stay warm after stopping. Avoid drive-up windows – park and go inside instead.

Observe the speed limit.  Gas mileage decreases rapidly at speeds above 60 mph. Each 5 mph you drive over 60 mph is like paying an additional $0.15 per gallon of gas. Using cruise control on the highway helps you maintain a constant speed and, in most cases, will save gas.

Drive sensibly. Aggressive driving (speeding, rapid acceleration, and braking) wastes gas. It can lower your gas mileage by 33 percent at highway speeds and by 5 percent around town.

Consolidate trips. Combining errands into one trip saves you time and money. Several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much fuel as a longer multi-purpose trip covering the same distance when the engine is warm. With a little planning, you can avoid retracing your route and reduce the distance you travel as well. You’ll not only save fuel but also reduce wear and tear on your car.

Minimize drag.  Drag reduces fuel efficiency. Driving with the windows open, using roof- or rear-mounted racks, and carrying heavy loads increase vehicle drag. A roof rack or carrier provides additional cargo space and may allow you to meet your needs in a smaller, more fuel-efficient car. However, a loaded roof rack can decrease your fuel economy by 5 percent. Reduce aerodynamic drag and improve your fuel economy by using a removable rack and placing items inside the trunk whenever possible. Avoid carrying unnecessary items, especially heavy ones. An extra 100 pounds in the trunk reduces a typical car’s fuel economy by 1-2 percent.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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