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Alert for drivers being overcharged at petrol station tills by £5 every fill up – and how to avoid it
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DRIVERS are paying £5 more than they should be to fill up at petrol stations despite the price of petrol and diesel continuing to fall.

The average price of petrol fell by 7.5p a litre to November 146.95p, according to the RAC’s Fuel Watch.

Drivers are being charged £5 more than they should be when filling up their carsGetty

But it says that this is still 10p more per litre than it should be, with the average retailer margin per litre of petrol now 17p.

This is the the difference between the price that a business pays to acquire a product and the price it sells that item to customers.

Drivers are now paying an average of £80.62 to fill a typical 55-litre petrol family car – £5 more than they should be, says the RAC.

The price of diesel fell by 7p in November to 154.40p, but this is said to be an “overcharge” of 5p per litre.

It means filling a 55-litre car is around £2.50 more expensive than it should be at £84.92.

The RAC has criticised fuel retailers for ‘refusing to pass on’ the 5p fuel duty cut implemented in March 2022.

It estimates that motorists have lost out on £184m in the last two months alone because of this overcharge.

Fuel duty is a tax on fuel including petrol, diesel, biodiesel and bioethanol.

The Sun’s Keep it Down campaign has forced ministers to freeze duties for 13 years in a row.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “While the price of fuel fell in November, the truth is there is no reason whatsoever for drivers to be jubilant as the data clearly shows they are continuing to get a rough deal at the pumps.

“We reiterate our call to the biggest retailers to significantly cut their prices to mirror what’s happening with greatly reduced wholesale costs.”

How can I cut fuel costs?

You can’t avoid the charge completely, but there are things that you can do to make sure you’re saving money where possible.

There are ways to save an extra 5p per litre if you sign up for major supermarket loyalty schemes.

Esso has partnered with Nectar for its loyalty scheme and you can get 5p off a litre when you swap 300 Nectar points.

Drivers with a BPme rewards card will get one point for every £1 they spend in-store or on a litre of regular fuel at a BP garage.

Motorists will get £1 off their fuel or shopping for every 200 points.

Texaco, Shell, Sainsbury’s and Tesco loyalty card holders can also get money off their bills.

You can also cut fuel costs by driving more efficiently. This can be achieved by:

Accelerating gradually without over-revving Always driving in the highest possible gear Allowing your car to slow down naturally as your brake

There are also sites you can use to help you find the cheapest petrol prices near you, like PetrolPrices.com and Confused.com.

These allow you to search the prices of UK petrol stations. All you need to do is enter your postcode and tell it how far you want to travel (up to 20 miles).

The RAC’s Fuel Watch also highlights the retailers offering great value, with the independent Grindley Brook forecourt in Whitchurch, Shropshire, only charging 131.9p for petrol and 143.9p for diesel – considerably less than the average.

It’s also so easy to forget about the clutter building up in your car – whether it’s tools, kids’ toys or general rubbish.

However, additional storage space can increase fuel costs by a whopping 12%.

So, don’t forget to do a car clearout every now and then.

And, if you’re driving at a slower speed, think about taking the roof rack off and switching off the air-con to save on running costs.

You can also join our new Sun Money Facebook group to share stories and tips and engage with the consumer team and other group members.



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