Plan Ahead to Counter Fuel Increase

Motorhome owners heading for an Easter break this coming weekend can expect to pay record prices once more when they pull into a garage forecourt.

With talks between unions and the oil companies still to take place and garages still suffering from fuel shortages, prices will be at a record high by the time Good Friday arrives and some are predicting prices will be well over £1.50 a litre.

The AA predicts prices may go up by 1p but others are saying wholesalers will take the opportunity to increase prices by much more. A point not lost on Brian Madderson, Chairman of the Retail Motor Industry Petrol Division, who said “Between a third and a half of the petrol stations we have surveyed are out of unleaded petrol, diesel or both. We have been in touch with retailers all over the country who tell us the same story, that the withdrawal of fuel in such a frenzy in the mid-part of last week has actually made the tankers roll back orders so that some of our members won’t be getting any fuel until later this week. Motorists are paying a significant premium because the wholesalers know they are on to a good thing. It’s the law of supply and demand. Some retailers are trying very hard to keep prices down. Other retailers have said, I can’t handle this crisis, my shop sales have crashed, I haven’t had a single car washed, and I’ve got to do something to pay the wages so I’m going to have to put my prices up.”

With this situation as a backdrop motorhome owners may have to consider how they can eke their fuel out a little longer. Insurance experts say there are several easy steps motorists can take this Easter to reduce their fuel bills and all of them will also help in keeping their motorhome insurance premiums down. First of all they suggest planning the journey well. This may seem obvious but a driver who plans a journey well can avoid known trouble spots at busy times. This will not only save him time and fuel, but even the above mentioned motorhome insurance costs. Getting stuck in a traffic jam often means a vehicle is burning fuel without actually getting anywhere and of course any motor insurer will confirm that vehicles stuck in traffic jams are much more susceptible to breakdowns and engine damage.

Keeping an eye on the speedometer will also help as fuel consumption increases significantly between 60 mph and 80mph, with most cars performing most economically at speeds between 40 and 50 mph. Ensuring your vehicle has the correct tyre pressure reduces fuel usage and accident frequency, as will concentrating on the road ahead. Lastly but not least for motorhome users is the weight of the vehicle. It is really easy to just shove everything in that you think you may need for your break at the last minute, but remember every ounce you carry means you are using more fuel and poor storage can lead to accidents when it comes to unpacking.

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