Fuel Economy – ways you can save on your petrol costs

Advice on how you can save on your fuel costs

With public spending being cut and record levels of both unemployment and debt, the outlook for a large number of families in the UK is bleak. Many are forced to drink an unpalatable cocktail of financial insecurity and economic difficulty leading to some very difficult choices needing to be made within their household budgets.

With a little common sense and forward planning, many items of essential expenditure can be significantly reduced to save money and to alleviate the need to sacrifice the better things in life (which aren’t always free despite what the proverb says).

Food Shopping

Consider which supermarket is cheapest for like for like shopping, buy own brands, plan meals in advance and look for special offers. Read our blog about how to manage your food budget for more tips on this.


Shop around. Don’t automatically renew your policies without considering alternatives.

How to save on your petrol/diesel costs

Although each of these essential items can be reduced without too much difficulty, one item of essential expenditure cannot be reduced by conventional means – Petrol. At the time of writing this, the average price for a litre of unleaded petrol in the UK is £1.36 with petrol in some areas of the UK being as high as £1.50. High fuel costs are a real issue for everyone – but can be especially difficult for lower paid rural people who have a long journey to work. I have written this blog to provide some helpful tips to help aid fuel economy and to make more savings.

  1. Avoid using the car for short trips
    It may sound obvious but it is also true. It costs nothing to walk so try to do so when possible
  2. Make sure you are in the right gear
    Being in too low a gear can add 15% to your fuel bill so change to a higher gear when it is safe and reasonable to do so.
  3. Turn off the Air Conditioning
    Although nice on a warm day, running the air conditioning will drain your fuel at a rapid rate so avoid using it when it is not necessary. Unfortunately having your windows open will also mean using more fuel.
  4. Don’t drive too fast
    You will consume 20-30% more fuel driving at 70mph than at 50mph. Stick within the speed limits and don’t accelerate or brake too harshly. Looking well ahead is not just a safety tip, it allows you to drive economically too.
  5. Check your tyres
    Under inflated tyres not only wear more quickly but also reduce your fuel economy. Check the recommended psi levels for your tyres and ensure your check your tyre pressure at least every 2 weeks.

This list is far from exhaustive (excuse the pun) and there are many other avenues you can explore to reduce your outgoings. Please feel free to leave your own tips in the comments section.

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  1. Combining several trips into one is also a good plan as is trying to avoid rush hours (can be tricky, I know). 

    I found this website really useful:


    (Lesson 7 shows that, on motorways, if you need some form of cooling, aircon can be better than an open window).

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