Fuel prices rise more than 6p per litre in two months

Motorists are forced to fork out more money to fill up their cars. Here’s what’s causing the increase and how you can lessen the blow

Words ByMatthew Burrow

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The average price of petrol and diesel has gone up by more than six pence per litre since February 2016, according to figures from the RAC.

In April 2016, the average price of a litre of petrol in the UK was 108.27p, while diesel was slightly cheaper at 108.00p.

This comes just a few months after suppliers made the headlines when they started selling fuel for less than Β£1 per litre. What’s happened?

We’ve got used to the price of fuel falling. The average price of unleaded petrol reached a low of 101.93p per litre in February 2016 and diesel reached a low of 101.05p per litre in January. So the costs have increased by 6.34p and 6.95p respectively in just a couple of months.

These increases have come about despite the rate of fuel duty being frozen in this year’s budget at 57.95p per litre. So what has caused the increase? The price of oil has gone up and that extra cost is being passed on to the motorist.

How much is that extra cost? For a car with a fuel tank of 50 litres, that extra cost is Β£3.17 per fill up for petrol cars and Β£3.48 for diesel cars.

The price has gone up but it’s still considerably lower than it was last summer when the prices were 117.15p for unleaded and 120.75p for diesel.

How can you make yourself less susceptible to rises in the fuel prices?

Fluctuations in the price of fuel are practically impossible to predict. The RAC is not predicting further increases in the near future but if you want to save yourself money in the long run, it’s worth assuming that the price of fuel will continue to go up. Here’s how we suggest you keep your fuel bills down:

  • use our True MPG calculator to find what fuel economy you can expect from your car in the real world.
  • follow our advice to save fuel including keeping your car well maintained and removing clutter – any extra weight means you’ll be filling up more often.
  • fill your car up at supermarket filling stations, which are often cheaper than other suppliers. The average price per litre at UK supermarkets in April 2016 was 105.85p for unleaded petrol and 105.76p for diesel, more than 2p per litre cheaper than other suppliers.

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