GEORGIA – A record 44 million Americans are expected to travel this upcoming holiday weekend, and they will get a welcomed surprise at the pumps.

Gas prices are plunging like we’ve rarely seen before, now under $2 a gallon in many parts of the country. As of Thursday morning U.S. gas prices are at their lowest in 12 years just in time for the fourth.

“This is awesome, you’re going to make me get all excited and giddy about it but it really is awesome, ” said Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst.

The cheapest gas on average? In South Carolina, Oklahoma and in Indiana – prices at some stations plunged to a $1.49.

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Drivers crossing from California to Arizona can save 67 cents a gallon.

Americans will pay an average of $2.21 a gallon over the holiday weekend.

That’s the lowest since 2005.

For the first time on record prices are expected to be lower on July 4 than on New Year’s Day.

“Christmas in July, we usually don’t see such a big plunge just ahead of July 4,” Dehaan said.

According to the cheapest day on average to buy gas is Monday. The most expensive day is Thursday.

Fueling the drop is a surplus of crude oil.

Analysts predict at least some temporary price hikes later this summer at the height of hurricane season.” It’s summer time so we’re still waiting to see, after the 4th of July they might go up,” Dehaan added.

Right now 34 states have at least one station selling regular unleaded for under $2.