Ryugasaki is sometimes considered part of the Greater Tokyo Area. Many residents commute to central Tokyo. The city is the hometown of the JFL semi-pro team, Ryutsu Keizai University.
The current mayor is Kazuo Nakayama, who assumed the position on January 18, 2010. Nakayama is the seventeenth and eighteenth mayor of Ryūgasaki having been re-elected to hold the position again from January 18, 2014.
The modern city was founded on March 20, 1954, although the name "Ryūgasaki" can be traced back to 1182 when the clan ruling the territory adopted "Ryūgasaki" as their family name. Though originally part of the Sendai Domain, the region joined Miyazaku Prefecture (ja) in 1869 before becoming its own domain four years later. The domain joined Ibaraki Prefecture in 1875 and Ryūgasaki received town status within the prefecture in 1889. The city was formed on March 20, 1954, when the aforementioned town merged with: Nareshiba (ja), Ōmiya (ja), Yabara (ja), Nagato (ja), Kawarashiro (ja) and Kitamonma (ja). In February 1955, the city grew to its present size when a proportion of Takasu (ja) merged with the city.
Ryugasaki City has well-known crystal glass factory. The founder received a prize for his work in international exhibition in Paris of 1937. At present, these crystal glasses are used in the Imperial Palace.