Price of family petrol tank tops £100
The price of filling up the average family car is now more than £100 in some areas of the UK, according to new research.
The average price of petrol in the UK has risen by an average of 5.5% in the past two months, though some areas have seen price hikes of up to 9%. This means the cost of filling up a 70-litre tank now averages £97.37 and exceeds £100 in the most expensive areas.
The study conducted by the credit card arm of Santander used family people carriers with 70-litre petrol tanks as the basis for their claim that a trip to the forecourt can now cost more than £100.
Dumfries was found to be the most expensive place in the UK to fill up with unleaded at 145.90 pence per litre, followed by Durham and Hereford. While Plymouth, Kirkcaldy and Torquay were the cheapest, with Torquay offering unleaded at 135.90 per litre.
Drivers of cars with 70-litre tanks would be paying more than £100 to fill up in Dumfries and Durham.
Over the edge
Alan Mathewson, chief executive officer at Santander Cards, said: "With the cost of fuel expected to reach its highest level in the coming weeks, families and car commuters are likely to be hardest hit once again.
"Aside from mortgage costs, households in the UK already spend more on transport than any other living cost, so further hikes may well push many family budgets over the edge."
But Paul Watters, head of public affairs at the AA, said motorists are currently experiencing a little relief from rising petrol prices.
"It's gone up 8p since the start of the year but it could be a lot worse as we've seen oil slide a little and fuel duty frozen again. We might see a little bit of relief," he said.
"At the moment it is not as bad as it has been but the volatility is always there – and that's the problem. We are always going to see incremental increases but sometimes the prices do come down a bit. It's a case of one step backwards, two steps forward."
Mathewson said car-pooling, using public transport or simply driving more economically can save on fuel costs. He added that Santander's 123 Credit Card offers 3% cashback on fuel at petrol stations across the UK.
Used by the holder to buy goods and services, credit cards also have a monthly or annual spending limit, which may be raised or lowered depending on the creditworthiness of the cardholder. But unlike charge cards, borrowers aren’t forced to pay the balance off in full every month and, as long as they make a stated minimum payment, can carry a balance from one month to the next, generating compound interest. As the issuing company is effectively giving you a short-term loan, most credit cards have variable and relatively high interest rates. Allowing the interest to compound for too long may result in dire financial straits.