FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – The price of gas remains high since the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine began. Many will be checking out gas station prices while driving by — but why there is a posted difference between the cash price and the credit price?

The difference between the two varies by state, but California’s attorney general’s office is clear on the matter of credit card surcharges: they have to be disclosed. Surcharges are legal so long as they are properly publicized by the store. In other states, the legal foundation for a difference in the two prices is sometimes a “surcharge” for credit card transactions or a “discount” for cash transactions. The end result for both is a difference between the two prices.

The reason for the price difference is the extra fee for processing a credit card transaction – but why can gas stations make a distinction between cash and credit prices when other stores do not? According to NerdWallet, it comes down to the products offered. Gas stations primarily sell gas, making it simpler for those businesses to change the price charged depending on the method of payment – again, so long as the surcharge is disclosed.

Gas stations’ profits are thin, according to BestCards, and due to the intense competition from other gas stations, the prices are set at as small amount as possible over the cost of buying it from the supplier in order to display the lowest price possible (while still bringing in enough profit to keep the business going). That leads to the different price points displayed on the boards outside, as the lower the price displayed will likely encourage more drivers to fill up at that location.

Experts with GasBuddy say the beginning of the week is usually the cheapest to gas up. As the week continues the prices will rise gradually until they reach their most expensive point over the weekend.