Drivers Shocked as Fuel Prices Rise

With a country in lockdown and travelling restricted, you might not be thinking too much about fuel...
25/05/2021 News
Drivers shocked as fuel price rises

With a country in lockdown and travelling restricted, you might not be thinking too much about fuel, so it may come as a bit of a surprise to realise that prices have risen to beyond even pre-pandemic levels with a litre costing more than £1.20. That’s a 5p increase from what we had only a month ago.

Despite demand being lower than it was around this time last year, the average cost of petrol has climbed to £1.20 on average, whereas diesel will set you back around £1.23 per litre. At the moment, the cheapest place you can fill your vehicle is Northern Ireland where unleaded petrol is just under £1.15, followed by Wales where it jumps to around £1.18, but in the south east and London you’ll be paying more than £1.20, with prices even higher in some areas of Scotland.

We haven’t had a price like this for petrol since lockdown began, and while it wasn’t only the decrease in demand that brought the prices down during this period (there was also a dispute between Saudi Arabia and Russia regarding oil production), with around 80% less traffic on UK roads, the measures put in place for the pandemic were certainly a factor in keeping costs low.

Now, though it’s still only around 60% of its usual volume, the traffic on our roads is increasing again and together with the rise in fuel prices it might look to some like things getting back to normal, but the pandemic is far from over. Many of those taking to the roads are still only making short, essential trips, and it’s likely such drivers are not filling up their tanks quite as often – as result, they may find themselves shocked the next time they pull in for petrol. With many of us already worrying more about money during this time, it’s an extra stress on top of the usual budgeting.

So what can you do about it?

Save Money Motoring: Fuel Focus

Drive your fuel use down with these five lines of advice.

  1. Slow it down
    Going slow reduces fuel consumption. You don’t need to crawl along at a snail’s pace but cutting from 70mph to 60mph can save around 10% in fuel.

  2. Take a look at the tyres
    Not only are poorly maintained tyres dangerous, they add to fuel costs, so ensure yours are kept at the correct pressure.

  3. Keep the weight down
    A heavier vehicle is a more costly one when it comes to fuel, so travel light where possible. Keep the contents of the boot down to a minimum and consider keeping the fuel tank only half full.

  4. Be more aerodynamic
    Don’t worry, you don’t need to trade your car in for a sleeker model. However, you’ll use more fuel fighting against the wind, so if you’ve got a rooftop cargo box, take it off. If driving at speed, keep the windows up to prevent drag. (Although, in the summer months, unless you’re driving at speed, keep costs down by keeping the windows down rather than using the air conditioning.)

  5. Drive sensibly
    Good advice anyway, of course, especially regarding safety, but reading the road properly so that you’re not braking suddenly or speeding ahead and slowing down all the time puts less of a demand on your fuel consumption, too.

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