Here’s the gas situation near the border:
Beyond Maracaibo in Venezuela, it’s essentially free. Five Bolivars for an entire tank. Maybe $0.015 per gallon.
Between Maracaibo and the border, you can’t buy it at a gas station. Instead you buy it off the street. We never did stop, but the prices were around $1 USD per gallon. After living in Venezuela, you will complain about the high prices. It’s ridiculous, but trust me – you’ll complain.
On the Colombian side of the border, you might be able to buy gas from a real gas station for about 5000 COP per gallon (about $2.50 USD). There are street vendors selling it at 3000 COP (about $1.50 USD).
As we got closer to Riohacha, for some reason all of the gas stations were empty. Street vendors sold it for 5000 COP.
By the time you get to Santa Marta, all the street vendors are gone and the gas stations sell it for 8500 COP – the normal price in Colombia.
So, over roughly 300 km, the price of gasoline increases by 300 times. Crazy.