MILWAUKEE — The national average price for a gallon of gas reached a new all-time high of $4.76 Friday, with Wisconsin drivers paying an average of $4.68, according to AAA. Prices in Milwaukee have soared near or above $5 per gallon, and the frustration could lead more drivers to leave their car at home for the weekday commute this summer.

Since the start of the year, bus ridership in Milwaukee County has been up 14%. While it may be difficult to attribute the increase to fuel costs, the Milwaukee County Transit System said it expects more people to catch a ride on the bus, with no imminent signs of relief at the pump.

“People are noticing the bus,” MCTS marketing director Kristina Hoffman said. “They’re looking at it as an alternative to their current lifestyle, an alternative to their car, paying high gas prices, high parking prices. They’re stressed out. Let us do the driving.”

For many drivers, the switch would be a big change to their daily routine, but some, like frequent rider Brian Ambers, find the savings worth the shakeup.

“If you put five bucks in your tank, it’s not going to get you anywhere,” said Brian Ambers, who takes a bus from South Milwaukee to work an early shift in Bay View. “I’m saving a lot of money. I mean, I wish the prices would go down, but I don’t know when that’s going to happen.”

Each ride on an MCTS bus costs $2, and an all-day bus costs $5 in the service’s new Umo mobile app. Ambers said beyond the money he saves, his mind gets a break while he would otherwise be dealing with weekday traffic.

“If there’s a bus stop available, get on there,” Ambers said. ”Saves you a lot of money; you can enjoy your ride, listen to music, watch videos on your phone. That’s the way I do it.”

For Ambers, $2 each way is an easy tradeoff to the 40-minute round trip to work. He may be joined by more Wisconsinites as gas prices continue to soar.