As gas prices continue to climb in the Garden State and across the region, drivers are keeping a sharp eye out for cheaper fuel

According to Tom Kloza, the chief analyst for the Oil Price Information Service, most New Jersey gas stations are selling unleaded regular fuel for roughly the same price, between $2.75 and $2.85 a gallon. There are some places in the state where it's over $3, according to GasBuddy.

He also points out however in certain neighborhoods prices do tend to be a bit lower, including along major roads leading to the George Washington Bridge, around New Brunswick and the corridor leading to the Philadelphia airport.

He noted the average price for regular in the Garden state is up to $2.81 a gallon, “and it’s fairly competitive all over New Jersey.”

“It’s pretty difficult to be under, let’s say the price of $2.70 right now, because we’re using the summer grade right now and gasoline has moved up pretty drastically this spring.”

Kloza said if you’re selling gasoline “for less than $2.75, you better sell a lot of Slim Jims and a lot of stuff inside the store because you’re not going to make a lot of money on fuel."

THE MOST EXPENSIVE GAS (as of May 1)

$3.26 – Sunoco – 2889 Ocean Drive, Avalon

$3.19 — Exxon – 46 E. Main St., Holmdel

$3.19 – Exxon – 104 E. Main St., Mendham

$3.19 – Valero – 134 Route 202, Bernardsville

$3.15 – Exxon – 545 Martinsville Rd, Liberty Corner

$3.09 – Valero – 554 River Road, Fair Haven

$2.99 – Citgo – 1416 Zion Road, Northfield

$2.99 – Citgo – 1501 Kings Highway, Swedesboro

$2.99 – Exxon – 1231 Route 206, Shamong

$2.99 – Lukoil – 1205 Westbrook Rod, West Milford

$2.99 – Shell – 30 Old Turnpike Road, Oldwick

$2.99 – Sunoco – 291 High Bridge-Califon Road, Lebanon Township

$2.97 – Sunoco – New Jersey Turnpike John Fenwick Service Area, Penns Grove

He pointed out some drivers may have noticed a price difference of more than 10 or 15 cents at different stations in recent weeks, but “everyone has to buy the same sort of environmentally friendly summer gasoline from May 1 out, and that will equalize the prices.”

If you’re looking for a bargain, he said “you’ll still be able to see the Costco’s underselling virtually everyone, but their business plan is about getting you to make more visits so that you go inside and you buy that big bucket of mayonnaise.”

Besides Costco, “there’s other marketers like Delta and Raceway that tend to be very competitively priced."

THE CHEAPEST GAS (as of May 1)

$2.65 — Delta — 475 Route 4, Englewood

$2.69 — Fuel 4 — 596 Grove St., Jersey City

$2.69 — Gulf — 720 White Horse Pike, Oaklyn

$2.69 — Custom — 362 Totowa Ave., Paterson

$2.69 — PS Gas & Food — 1100 Hessian Ave., National Park

$2.69 — Gastrol Plus — 500 Haddonfield Road, Cherry Hill

$2.69 — Delta — 717 Liberty Av., Union

$2.69 — Gas Land — 1201 Springfield Road, Union

$2.73 — ENR-G — 508 North Ave., Union

$2.73 — Exxon — 564 Route 3, Clifton

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While some parts of the state tend to offer lower priced gas, Kloza noted prices may be 15 to 20 cents higher in more affluent areas of New Jersey, including towns like Princeton, Summit, Chatham and Rumson.

“There’s a lot of folks where it’s just all about convenience and it’s about local patrons,” he said. “If you’re in some of the tonier suburbs and so forth, they can get away with charging a little more.”

Kloza said the bottom line here is when it comes to selling gasoline, “retail is a really tough business and for many of the folks who operate retail stations, they’re eking out a living and living paycheck to paycheck.”