An expert has revealed his top money-saving fuel hacks to keep the cost of petrol and diesel down.
People across Ireland are facing a nasty cost of living crisis, with motorists in particular feeling the pinch.
Fuel costs are set to increase even more due to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Richard Williams, Head of Transport Policy at the north’s Consumer Council, told Belfast Live what drivers can do to make a tank last longer.
He said: “The advice we would give is to shop around as there are some savings to be made even though they’re not huge.
“One thing we are suggesting is to reduce your journeys if you’re able to, but obviously a lot of people can’t. We’re encouraging people to use public transport if possible.
“The evidence we have going back over a number of years is it’s cheaper to commute by bus than it is by car if you factor in all the running costs of the car.
“It’s also important important to maintain your car as making sure your tires are properly inflated and making sure your car isn’t cluttered up with waste can make it more efficient,” he said.
Mr Williams revealed the Consumer Council’s top money-saving fuel tips.
- Keep your tyres inflated – reduce the drag
- Declutter your car – Less weight means less fuel
- Don’t fill your car up – fuel is heavy
- Brake and accelerate less – they burn fuel
- Avoid stopping and starting where possible – roll up slowly
Speaking about why fuel prices are dramatically increasing, he explained: “This is all tied to the price of international crude oil. We’ve seen that increasing over the past year, the latest figure is $119 (€108) today for a barrel, when only yesterday it was $112.93 (€102), and a year ago it was $64 (€58).
“That increase was taking place steadily but as the world economies were coming out of Covid, demand was increasing. But with the situation in Ukraine over the last week and the huge uncertainty, that’s caused uncertainty on the international markets about the supply chains remaining intact. All of this has meant prices have really shot up in crude oil.
“It probably hasn’t quite worked its way through to the pumps yet even though we’re seeing these increases. The analytics are suggesting this is not going away quickly and it’s probably not peaked yet.”
It comes amid serious concerns about the threat of a fuel crisis in Ireland, with fears for queues at petrol pumps.
A letter has been sent to Taoiseach Micheal Martin, Tanaiste Leo Varadkar and Energy Minister Eamon Ryan which outlines “deep concerns at indications of an imminent tightening of supplies,” from the Irish Road Haulage Association (IRHA).
AA Ireland has said petrol and diesel prices are at record levels, while Applegreen has warned of a “substantial” increase in petrol and diesel prices for its business customers from Saturday.
Prices for a litre of petrol have already risen to €2 at some forecourts.