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Petrol now officially at record levels — here are five ways to save fuel

Petrol and diesel prices went up sharply again on Wednesday. File photo.
Petrol and diesel prices went up sharply again on Wednesday. File photo.
Image: Supplied

Motorists woke up to record high fuel prices on Wednesday morning . 

The price of 93-octane petrol increased by R2.37/l, 95-octane by R2.57/llow sulphur 50 ppm diesel by R2.30/l and 500 ppm by R2.31/l. Illuminating paraffin increased by R2.21/l.

The new retail price for a litre of 93-petrol is R26.31 and 95 costs R26.74 inland, while the inland wholesale price of 500 ppm diesel is R25.40 and 50 ppm diesel costs R25.53. The prices are nearly R10/l more than a year ago.

The department of mineral resources and energy attributed the hikes to higher average international prices for fuel.

Here are five ways to help motorists be more fuel-efficient. 

Drive more carefully and avoid short trips

Aggressive driving such as rapid acceleration, speeding and braking can lower your fuel mileage significantly.

According to the Automobile Association (AA), trips of two kilometres or less use more fuel than longer trips. Even more so if your car’s engine is cold. 

So if you want to reduce your fuel bills, try not to make unnecessary trips.

Use reward points

Those who are signed up for reward programmes through their bank are rewarded every time they fill up and swipe their reward cards at participating petrol stations.

The reward cards include Sasol RewardsCapitec Live Better BenefitsFNB eBucksDiscovery Vitality DriveNedbank Greenbacks and Standard Bank uCount

Other fuel-saving reward cards are Absa RewardsDis-Chem RewardsShell V+ Rewards and Clicks ClubCard

Use public transport or carpool

If you live near a train station or bus stop, consider using public transport.

Public transport also reduces air pollution by limiting the number of vehicles on the road.

Depending on the trip, bus and train tickets can cost a fraction of the fuel for a private car. Using bus clip cards, or weekly and monthly train tickets, decreases the cost of using public transport even further.

Travellers can also consider carpooling to get to work. 

According to Santam, with apps like Carpool you could use your car to earn some money on upcoming trips by accepting cash from strangers to share a ride with you. 

This should not be done with the aim of making a profit and it is recommended that the fares you collect should not exceed the SARS Reimbursement Travel Allowance. 

Passengers will be unable to claim from you for bodily injury if you’re in an accident, but can claim from the Road Accident Fund.

Be aware of the terms and condition of your insurance before signing up for these programs.

Don't buy premium fuel ... unless you need to

Yes, you can skip premium fuel to save money, provided it's not required by your vehicle. 

Premium fuel has a higher octane rating, an important factor in helping prevent engine knock. 

Compared to regular fuel, premium fuel costs more and could be 90-octane, 91-octane or even 94-octane.

Get things delivered

According to a new calculation confirmed by the AA, it’s cheaper for many South Africans to get groceries delivered by grocery services than to drive to stores themselves.

Checkers calculated that the average Sixty60 customer saves 33% on fuel and vehicle running costs by shopping via the app and paying the R35 delivery fee.

According to Checkers, in calculating this 33% saving, it considered that SA's top-selling passenger vehicle costs R7.01 per kilometre to run. 

The average return journey for a Sixty60 delivery is 7.5km. If a customer made this trip, it would cost them R52.57. Compared to Sixty60’s R35 delivery fee, this realises a saving of R17.57 per trip.

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