It almost feels like sticker shock, but for the right reasons. Gas prices in New Jersey below $3 a gallon? Can it be real?

It's been so long since we've seen that, after many months of record-breaking high prices. Who remembers when some gas stations in The Garden State broke the $5 per gallon limit? It wasn't a pretty site.

Well good news, New Jersey. Prices recently have been trending in the right direction, and the outlook appears favorable for that to continue. In fact, we haven't seen prices this low since 2021 (Click here to check out the forecast for gas prices in 2023, including the outlook for diesel prices).

And even though New Jersey's gas prices are falling, at the moment we're not predicted to drop below the $3 per gallon average in the near future. However, there are always some exceptions to the rule.

gas pump
(Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media NJ)

Fortunately for us, some New Jersey gas stations have indeed dropped below the $3 per gallon mark just in time for the big Christmas and New Years holidays. It's a nice gift for you courtesy of the gas pump.

As of mid-December, not many stations have dropped that low. Most, however, aren't too far from an even $3, which is much-welcomed news for our wallets.

But as mentioned above, there are a few exceptions out there. For example, some of those lower prices can be found in Monmouth County.

Gas station on Route 36 in Keyport, NJ
Mike Brant - TSM

One of those exceptions is the Shell on State Route 36 in Keyport. As of December 14, gas prices for regular were $2.95 per gallon. Of course, that's just the cash price. It's a bit higher for credit, but not by much.

Pause for a moment and think about that for a second. How long has it been since we've seen that first number in the price begin with a 2?

And what's even better is this isn't the only station that's currently below $3 per gallon. A little further down State Route 36 more stations appear with prices just as low.

Gas station on Route 36 in Hazlet, NJ
Mike Brant - TSM

A little tough to see from the side angle, but the cash price for this Shell gas station was set at $2.99 per gallon on December 14.

A few cents higher than the other Shell station, but still below $3 per gallon. This station's also not too much further from the first, just down the way on State Route 36 in Hazlet.

There were a few more stations down Route 36 in this area that also had prices below $3 per gallon, but the vast majority were still a tick above that. Hopefully, most of the other stations will eventually drop below that mark as well.

Regardless, prices like this still beat those in the $4 per gallon range, which hopefully will remain in the rearview mirror.

Aaron Savage, Townsquare Media
Aaron Savage, Townsquare Media

Now Route 36 isn't the only highway with lower gas prices. And not all the stations were of big brand names.

A little further north from the Route 36 and Route 35 intersection also had a few stations displaying gas prices below $3 per gallon. Not all of them, but a few.

And as mentioned earlier, not all were big brands. For example, check out Power Fuel in South Amboy on State Route 35 North.

Gas station in South Amboy, NJ (Gas prices below $3 per gallon)
Mike Brant - TSM

Same situation as before. If you pay cash, then you're in for some nice savings.

As of December 14, Power Fuel was selling regular unleaded gas at $2.95 per gallon. Now yes, technically there's the 9/10 fraction on the final penny, but even with that the price still remains below the $3 threshold.

And much like the other stations, the credit price is also just a tick higher. Hopefully, that's only for now.

Fuel pump payment kiosk

Fortunately for us, this isn't the only part of New Jersey with gas prices this low. Prices below $3 per gallon can also be found along US Route 1.

Some of the stations seen at this lower price have been spotted anywhere from Edison down through South Brunswick. Not all the stations, but there are a few.

And some have reported seeing prices just below $3 per gallon in other parts of the state as well. There's still a long way to go, obviously, but we're trending in the right direction.

What's more, this drop below $3 is happening just in time for holiday travel.

elise_kurenbina GettyImages
elise_kurenbina GettyImages

It's a really nice gift from some of New Jersey's gas stations, and one we hope to continue to get even well into the new year.

Of course, things can change on a dime, which we've all grown accustomed to happening. So with that said, we should gladly accept this holiday present of low gas prices but not get our hopes up too soon.

Maybe, if we're lucky, we can eventually get back to the good old days of $1 per gallon gas (OK, maybe that's a stretch, but it's nice to dream).

$1.49 Gas Prices in Turnersville, Gloucester County - Townsquare Media
$1.49 Gas Prices in Turnersville, Gloucester County - Townsquare Media

And just to be clear. No, there is no gas price currently at $1.49 per gallon in New Jersey. But wouldn't that be a great site?

LOOK: See how much gasoline cost the year you started driving

To find out more about how has the price of gas changed throughout the years, Stacker ran the numbers on the cost of a gallon of gasoline for each of the last 84 years. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (released in April 2020), we analyzed the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline from 1976 to 2020 along with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for unleaded regular gasoline from 1937 to 1976, including the absolute and inflation-adjusted prices for each year.

Read on to explore the cost of gas over time and rediscover just how much a gallon was when you first started driving.

9 reasons it’s stupid we don’t have self-serve gas in NJ

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM