21 tips to save on petrol

Cape Town - Fin24 users offer tips on how to ease the impact of fuel costs and experts say hard-pressed consumers will benefit from the petrol price drop.

All grades of petrol and diesel prices will come down from Wednesday September 3. Petrol 95 and 93 (ULP and LRP) is falling by 67 cents a litre (c/l), while price of diesel will drop by 25.38 c/l.

Debt Rescue CEO Neil Roets said deeply indebted consumers collectively owe around R1.44trn in debt and that there is a steady decline in their ability to repay loans.

He said in a statement on Monday that they will get some relief when the petrol price drops.

“This decrease in the fuel price is going to help many South Africans who had been pushed into dire poverty by a variety of increases over the past months including an 8% hike by Eskom in the electricity price, the 0.25% increase in the lending rate imposed by the South African Reserve Bank and an above-inflation rate increase in the costs of basic necessities such as food."

Roets added that it was an established fact that when the fuel price went up, goods and services rose in line with the increase.

“When the petrol and diesel prices decrease as they have now, we very seldom see much in the line of decreases in overall prices so consumers are still going to pay much the same prices for food and other important services such as electricity.”

Dawie Roodt, chief economist with the Efficient Group, said the decrease would bring some relief to hard-pressed consumers.

"It is definitely going to put a few extra rand in the pockets of consumers. Now would be a good time to pay off outstanding debts and try and build up a nest egg for a rainy day,” Roodt said.

One Fin24 user wrote in seeking advice on how to save fuel. "Please help me with methods of saving petrol. I drive a 1.4i Corolla."

Here are 21 fuel saving tips from other Fin24 users:

1. Fill your tank in the morning.
2. Do away with aggressive driving.
3. Only fill up when it's half tank rather than quarter tank.
4. Your car is not a taxi to ferry friends and unless you plan for those journeys, your friends should fill up.
5. Change to highest gear rather than driving in lowest gear.
6. Service your car regularly.
7. Don't over rev your car.
8. Look for more ways not to travel alone. Carpooling will help a lot, even only one day a week.
9. Drive the minimum required on the road.
10. Don't be hard on brakes.
11. Try not to use aircon.
12. Don't be hard on your accelerator.
13. Check your tyre pressure if it's correct.
14. Keep windows closed.
15. Shop around for diesel prices.
16. Travel at a regular speed (ie don’t repeatedly accelerate and then slow down); use cruise control if you have one. 
17. Synchronised traffic lights would be a big help.
18. It is more economical to use the aircon than driving with open windows.
19. Accelerate downhill and maintain speed on inclines; roll to a stop sign.
20. Get to know the timing of your local traffic lights.
21. Go for lift clubs to travel to work. Four is an ideal number: one member uses his or her car for a week, and the other for another week like that among the four of you.

Any more tips? Please share in the comments box below or email us.

Also read: Don't expect another big petrol price drop or price hike until the year end, economists predict.

 - Fin24

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