With the costs of unleaded petrol (ULP) now upwards (and rising) of $1.35 a litre, we could all do with some help to monitor the price and reduce our budgets by minimising fuel consumption where possible. How can you save money on your petrol costs?
Firstly, do your research when looking at purchasing a vehicle. Invest in a car that is fuel-efficient. Even if it costs you a little more to begin with, it will pay for itself many times over. Be realistic about your needs, you may covet a big shiny 4WD but if all you are doing is running about town, a small sedan or hatchback, which uses far less fuel will suit you better.
If you are inclined to be a bit of a lead foot, slow down. Your car’s engine has to work harder for every kilometre faster you drive. You may also avoid another expense – an unwanted speeding fine!
Have your car serviced regularly and keep your eye on oil changes and fluid levels. You could potentially pay an extra six per cent per year on petrol if your car’s tyres are slightly flat.
Remove any excess weight in your car; there is no need to carry half your wardrobe around in the back. Once you’ve done your shopping or borrowed a pile of books from the library, take them out of the car and put them away.
Plan your trips to take the most direct route and do all your errands in one outing. It makes no sense to go out to do your grocery shopping, take it home, then go back to the same part of town to do your banking and drop off your dry cleaning.
Use your cruise control to stop unnecessary acceleration, and turn off your air conditioning.
If you have a credit card or rewards card such as Flybuys, use your points towards petrol gift cards.
Consider car pooling or walking rather than using your car every time you need to go out.