8 Ways to Save on Petrol Costs

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While owning a vehicle in Australia is relatively cheaper compared to Singapore, fuel prices are also cheaper too. This is a much welcomed relief as owning a car is sometimes not a luxury but a necessity, especially if you live in a rural area with not much public transportation options. The tyranny of distance is a real issue in a big country like Australia if you don’t have your own private transport.     

Independent petrol servo
Example of a petrol station from an independent fuel supplier
Mobil servo at 7-eleven
Example of a fuel supplier affiliated with a convenience store / supermarket chain

The usual major fuel companies (Shell, BP, Mobil) found in Singapore and Malaysia are also found in Melbourne. In addition, there are independent suppliers like Ecco, Liberty, APCO and United as well. Below are eight easy ways to help you reduce expenditure on petrol.

8 Money Saving Tips:

1) Watch the pricing cycle – If you have kept an eagle eye on the price display boards of your local servos, you will know that the price of petrol goes in a cycle from high to low and suddenly back up high again, over a time frame of a few weeks. Should you find yourself in need of fuel when the price is on the high side of the cycle, it is worthwhile to just buy enough fuel to last till the price has come down and then topping up the tank. The downside is that “timing the price cycle” is tricky as the price may suddenly shoot back up to start a new cycle.

2) Download the Petrol Spy App –This is a useful app on your phone to help you track the petrol prices of nearby servos. It sure beats driving around to compare prices!

3) Purchase from independent petrol stations – The independent petrol stations generally tend to offer slight lower prices. If there is one near you, do check it out.  

4) Use correct choice of petrol octane rating – Based on the car manufacturer, you should use petrol with the recommended octane number (91, 95 or 98 RON). Using more expensive petrol of higher octane number will not hurt the engine but it does mean incurring unnecessary costs.  

5) Use E10 blend if possible – Petrol with a blend of up to 10% ethanol is slightly cheaper than 91 RON regular petrol. This may be an option but there is a debate on the use of this blended petrol on the engine performance and the fuel system of vehicles.  

6) Maintain your vehicle regularly – It makes sense to regularly send your vehicle for servicing and maintenance in order to get the best mileage from it. A properly tuned vehicle emits less pollution and is more fuel efficient.  

7) Inflate tyres to correct pressure – This is a no brainer as under inflated tyres will cause fuel efficiency to drop and the vehicle to be sluggish. Make it a habit to check your tyre pressure regularly whenever you visit a petrol station.

8) Use your car less – This simple tip will save you more petrol money than any other if you are generally making short trips. There is a host of cheaper transport alternatives (walking, cycling, using public transport etc) so the option of leaving the car at home whenever possible is not that farfetched or impossible to achieve. Reducing pollution is everyone’s responsibility.

Further readings

https://petrolspy.com.au/map/latlng/-33.8657305/151.20733

https://www.canstar.com.au/car-insurance/which-petrol-should-you-use/

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