Money Saving Tips: How to save money on fuel
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It is still very early days in 2020, but one thing already seems certain to happen this year: at some point fuel prices will increase.
Current reasons for this include:
- Growing tensions between the US and Iran;
- The limiting of supplies by OPEC (Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries);
- Changes in the value of the pound: if the pound weakens against the dollar, then it will be more expensive for a UK retailer to buy oil.
Even if no immediate price rise happens, these factors mean that it is likely to happen during 2020.
So what can you do to prepare for this?
There are three main things that you can do. Read on to find out more:
Cut down the use of your car
One obvious way to save money on fuel is to cut down the use of your car. It is easy to get into the habit of taking the car everywhere, so start questioning whether you really do need to. Might it be possible to walk or cycle where you are going, or use public transport instead?
On occasions where you do definitely need the car, try and combine various errands into one round trip rather than lots of shorter trips.
If you use your car to travel to work is there any way you can cut down on this? For example either arranging a car share with a colleague or changing your working patterns to work from home more. Why not encourage your company to use Skype and other online meeting facilities wherever possible, rather than gathering groups of people together for face to face meetings?
Shop around for fuel
Even when fuel prices rise, there can still be a big difference between prices at the pump, so it pays to shop around. Keep an eye open for supermarket promotions (including loyalty card vouchers) and also check out websites such as petrolprices.com that will list the cheapest petrol stations in your area.
Make sure you fill up well before you get low on fuel so that you can make informed choices about where to buy your fuel rather than panic-buying. Also check carefully the type of fuel you are filling with, as it is very easy to use premium fuel without realising.
Drive in a fuel-efficient way
Many drivers are not aware that the way we drive can affect the rate at which our cars consume fuel. By following these 6 simple rules, you can easily reduce your fuel consumption:
- Don’t drive too fast. Driving at slightly slower speeds can save between 10-25% fuel consumption.
- Drive smoothly. Lots of braking and accelerating uses more fuel than steady consistent driving.
- Look after your car. Regular servicing, correctly inflated tyres and good oils and fluids will maintain engine efficiency.
- Don’t overload your car. Keep the weight down where possible to reduce fuel consumption.
- Don’t overuse air conditioning. This can increase fuel consumption, especially at low speeds.
- Drive a manual. Automatic cars can use 10% to 15% more fuel than manuals.
If you start following the above steps now you will be establishing good habits that will make a big difference to your spending on fuel, which is particularly important if prices do rise in 2020.
Remember to check back here soon for more financial and lifestyle tips from Logbook Loans.