New research has revealed that independent petrol stations are leading the way in offering drivers fairer prices…
Independent Stations, Fairer Prices
Research conducted by RAC Fuel Watch has revealed that only a handful of petrol stations are offering drivers fair prices. Notably, however, independent stations are much more likely to do so than larger retailers. Of 4,500 fuel retailers, just 407 (10%) were found to be offering fair prices for diesel and petrol.
According to the RAC, retailers should be charging around 174p for a litre of unleaded fuel. For perspective, the average cost is currently 188p. The research showed that just 157 petrol stations are offering prices between 170.9p and 179.9p. Of these, 125 are independently owned, 28 are owned by supermarkets and the rest are operated by oil companies.
The remaining 4,436 stations (96% of the total) are selling unleaded at 180p a litre or more; this is significantly above what the RAC believes to be a fair price, given current wholesale costs. A very similar situation was also observed concerning the price of diesel, too.
Simon Williams, the RAC’s fuel spokesman, commented on the current fuel prices. He said, “our analysis of this new data shows something that is very telling. It appears to be the case that it’s no longer the big four supermarkets that lead on price. But instead smaller independent sites that are prepared to buck the national forecourt trend”.
He continued, “certainly, the days of fuel ‘price wars’ – where the supermarkets simultaneously cut their prices and made a big deal of doing so – appear to be well and truly over. Instead, supermarkets seem to prefer to battle over grocery prices which, while helpful, is ignoring the huge sums households are having to fork out for fuel to keep their cars running”.
William’s concluded, “drivers who fill up at supermarket forecourts have every right to feel let down that they are being charged well over the odds for petrol and diesel right now”.
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