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Morrisons UK filling station

Morrisons cuts UK petrol price to 99.7p a litre

Morrisons UK filling station

The price of petrol at Morrisons filling stations has dropped below £1 a litre for the first time in more than four years.

The nationwide petrol price at Morrisons filling stations is now 99.7p a litre.

This is 9p a litre cheaper than the UK national average.

Diesel prices have also been cut, to 104.7p a litre – compared to the national average of 114.2p.

“This cut will help people who are travelling to work, those shopping for essentials, and those assisting the elderly and vulnerable,” said Morrisons’ head of fuel, Ashley Myers.

For the average 50-litre fill-up, Morrisons’ latest price cut will save £4.50, he added.

The fuel retailer says its headline-grabbing new petrol price makes it only the second time since the 2008-09 financial crisis that petrol prices have fallen below £1 a litre.

The price cut is now live as of 11 May 2019 at all of Morrisons’ 337 filling stations across the UK.

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How to find the cheapest petrol and diesel near you

Fuel prices

The coronavirus crisis was meant to bring fuel prices down, due to a collapse in the price of oil. 

However, while there was initially a big drop in the pump price of petrol and diesel, decreases seem to have stalled in recent weeks. 

Happily, there are a number of ways you can track down the best deals, making savings despite pump prices remaining stubbonly static.

Here’s our complete guide to finding the cheapest petrol and diesel near you.

Latest petrol and diesel prices in the UK

Car fuel gauge

First, let’s set a baseline. What are the average prices for petrol and diesel in Britain right now? The RAC has a Fuel Watch tool that reveals all.

As of 11 May 2020, diesel is 114.2p per litre, unleaded petrol is 108.7p and super unleaded is 123.9p. The RAC says all are very likely to decrease in the coming weeks.

So there’s your target petrol and diesel prices right now. Let’s see how to get the cheapest fuel near you…

Connected cars

Audi Connect

If you’re in a new car with a built-in SIM card and the latest infotainment system – for instance, an Audi equipped with Audi Connect – your route to the cheapest fuel in your area should be very swift indeed.

Audi Connect utilises an online database to find fuel stations with the cheapest fuel options for you. Simply follow your way through the infotainment to the petrol stations icon where it says ‘Refuel for the best price’ (see image above).

Many manufacturers over the past couple of years have been taking similar measures to get connected and will likely offer a similar service – it’s worth asking the salesman as you shop around for the best car deals. Great stuff if it works…

Waze

Waze fuel finder

And if it doesn’t… Waze is a free user-supported navigation app for iPhone and Android. Accident alerts, roadworks, camera locations and more are fed in as contributions from people using the app, thereby keeping information up to date for the entire user base in that local area.

That user contribution-based system isn’t limited to route planning, either. One incredibly useful feature is the fuel station finder complete with, you guessed it, prices to match. If the BP up the road from your hotel is a bit heady at 129p a litre, Waze might show you a Tesco five miles away that’s down at 124p. We are quite literally dealing with pennies here, but if you have a long journey ahead, you’d save £2.50 on a 50-litre fill-up.

What are the drawbacks? Well, depending on where you are, the user-supported nature can be patchy. In busy urban areas, it’s great. Savvy commuters are always online, keeping the app’s information fresh on all of the above, including fuel prices. Find yourself further out in the sticks, however, and it falters. The user base is Waze’s most precious resource and if that dries up, well, so does Waze. The ads can get irritating, too, but ads make the world go round!

Regardless, it’s a handy first port of call to have installed on your phone.

Price comparison websites

Confused.com fuel guide

We mean that in the actual Confused.com sense, and its dedicated cheapest fuel price finder near you tool.

Sign up for free, pop in your postcode, tick whether you want stations that are open at that particular time and away you go. It’s a clean and crisp facility. The semi-regular weekly update can catch you by surprise price-wise if there’s a sudden hike in between updates.

By and large, the cheapest stays the cheapest, though, regardless of universal hikes. One thing none of these facilities can do is keep prices down. The main drawback really is that you’ll have to search for your chosen watering hole on a map separately.

petrolprices.com

That’s where Petrolprices.com comes in, in a manner of speaking. Like Confused, you plug in your postcode but the filling stations come up on a map within a radius around your chosen postcode. It seems to be the best of the website-based facilities that feature a map.

Where Petrolprices falters is in its clunkiness (we suspect due to the ads) and the fact that to get rid of them, it’s a £20-a-year subscription as standard. Whats more, some of the fuel stations, while marked out on the map, are kept anonymous. It’ll only show you all of them if you get that subscription. You may prefer to use Confused.com and search the station on a map.

Fuel prices

Know your brands

One thing it’s easy to overlook is just having a general knowledge of fuel station brands. The general rule is that supermarket filling stations are cheaper than branded stops like Shell, BP and so on. Especially if you’re in the market for the juicier stuff. We found in a recent stop at Tesco that Momentum (99 Octane) came in at the same price as the standard 95 stuff from a nearby Shell.

Want proof? The AA produces a regular report on fuel prices, and the results are conclusive. The average at supermarkets is nearly always cheaper than the national average – in the case of February, 4.5p cheaper than average.

Asda regularly sets the standard for fuel price drops, with the most recent coming at the end of January. Its prices are set country-wide, too. If you’ve got a big shop planned, Tesco can be a worthwhile stop. It often runs a 10p discount per litre of fuel bought if you spend over a certain amount (usually £40 or more) in-store.

M6 motorway

A general rule of thumb? Stay well away from motorway service stations unless you want to pay a huge premium for a litre over literally anywhere else.

So, if you’re in an unfamiliar area and want a safe bet on cheap fuel, simply ask someone where the local supermarket filling station is.

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Why record low oil prices might not mean lower pump prices

petrol pump

The price of a barrel of crude oil plummeted by 66 percent in March, falling to its lowest level in 18 years. The cost of a litre of unleaded fuel dropped from 122.72p to 113.54p as a result. That’s a fall of 9.18 percent.

Meanwhile, the supermarkets announced some major cuts, with prices dropping to 104p and 111p for petrol and diesel respectively. Asda finished March selling petrol for 102.7p and diesel for 108.7p.

But the RAC is warning drivers that fuel prices are unlikely to drop below £1 per litre, with retailers already feeling the effects of the lockdown. Demand for petrol is down 75 percent, while diesel is down 71 percent as motorists stay at home.

Road travel has dropped by 73 percent during the lockdown, leading to a stark warning from the Petrol Retailers Association (PRA). It said that 1,000 retailers could be lost as a result of the coronavirus and plummeting oil prices.

According to the RAC, further price cuts remain a possibility if retailers are prepared to pass on the savings they are making to drivers.

‘At pains to trim their prices’

Esso petrol station

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “The oversupply of oil continues to suppress the barrel price and it’s clear now that plans by some of the world’s largest oil-producing nations to limit production haven’t yet been enough to lift the price – there’s currently too little demand for oil in the first place.

“It’s right that retailers charge a fair price for fuel that reflects the price of the raw product, and in theory petrol prices could fall below £1 per litre if the lower wholesale costs were reflected at the pumps – but at the same time people are driving very few miles so they’re selling vastly lower quantities of petrol and diesel at the moment. This means many will be at pains to trim their prices any further.

“We also continue to be concerned about smaller forecourts that provide a vital service in areas where the supermarkets don’t have a foothold as many are already finding conditions tough with sales having fallen off a cliff since lockdown. It would be bad news all round if these forecourts shut up shop for good.”

As of Sunday 26 April, the pump price for a litre of petrol was 109.3p, while diesel stood at 114.8p. Around two-thirds of the price of fuel goes to the government in form of duty and VAT.

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Independent petrol stations face fight for survival

Esso petrol station

Thousands of independent petrol stations are ‘desperately trying to stay open’. That’s according to the Petrol Retailers Association (PRA).

It says that up to 100 petrol stations have been forced to close their doors during the lockdown. Of those that have remained open, many have had to reduce their operating hours, with staff lost to COVID-19 symptoms or the need to self-isolate.

Road travel has dropped by 73 percent during the lockdown, placing further pressure on independent retailers. Many petrol stations rely on non-fuel purchases to boost their profits – and fewer customers means fewer sales.

That’s not all. At the beginning of March, a barrel of crude oil cost $50, but by the end of the month it had plummeted by 66 percent to less than $18: the lowest level in 18 years.

As a result, more than 9p came off the average price of unleaded in the month, with diesel down 8p. RAC fuel spokesperson Simon Williams said: “We are very mindful at this time of the pressure this can place on smaller, independent forecourts that provide a vital service where there is no supermarket footprint.

“While we all want reasonably priced fuel for our essential journeys, surely none of us want to see smaller enterprises going out of business trying to match the supermarkets’ big price cuts at a time when so few of us are driving compared to normal.”

’Petrol stations have been hit very hard’

Texaco petrol station

The PRA has warned that 1,000 retailers could be lost as a result of the coronavirus and plummeting oil prices.

“These petrol stations have been hit very hard by the biggest, fastest drop in demand that any of us has ever witnessed” said Brian Madderson, chairman of the Petrol Retailers Association.

“For some of our members, this drop has been as much as 85 percent of normal volume leading to a huge cash flow crisis. The sector is unique, with over 70 percent of income taken by the Government through fuel duty and VAT. There is a cash grant of £25,000 available to small and medium size petrol stations, but this is swallowed by the next delivery, with a tanker needing over £26,000 just to pay the tax.

“There is speculation from some motoring organisations and lobby groups that UK fuel prices will tumble fast as a result of the historic event in North America yesterday, when the value of oil moved into negative territory.”

“However, with such low demand for road fuel, most petrol stations would risk their financial viability if they had to reduce prices still further. Instead of 100 closures, we could see 1,000 – severely disadvantaging so many of the essential frontline workers.

“The target remains to keep open and provide continuity of service.”

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Fuel stations at risk of closure due to coronavirus

Rural filling station

Many filling stations will have to close in coming weeks as a collapse in demand makes businesses unviable.

The Petrol Retailers Association has warned rural fuel stations are particularly at risk.

Demand for petrol is down 75 percent, while diesel is down 71 percent as motorists heed government warnings to stay at home.

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This is having a severe impact on filling station businesses, says the PRA, where sales volumes have plunged.  

The association is now warning motorists in rural areas to check their local filling station is open before they travel to buy fuel.

“To help freight move and help key workers travel safely and independently through this period of crisis, petrol filling stations must remain open,” said PRA chairman Brian Madderson.

“But this is proving to be a challenge for many.”

The collapse in oil prices is not helping independent filling stations, either: a PRA survey suggests six in 10 have full storage tanks, purchased weeks earlier when oil prices were much higher.

“Fuel retailers are having to maintain pump prices at previous levels to avoid suffering significant losses,” said Mr Madderson.

“When the COVID-19 restrictions and high sales volumes return, then we expect to see reductions in retail fuel prices.”

He has asked the government to give smaller fuel retailers the same 60-day credit terms as those enjoyed by supermarkets.

Morrisons fuel filling station

Morrisons announces biggest ever cut to fuel prices

Morrisons fuel filling station

Morrisons has announced a record-breaking 12p a litre cut to petrol prices as global oil prices fall due to the coronavirus crisis.

Diesel prices have also fallen by 8p a litre.

The reductions will take the price of petrol at supermarket forecourts to around 104p a litre, while diesel should fall to 111p a litre.

ALSO SEE: Do I still need a car or motorcycle MOT during the coronavirus crisis?

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said the cuts are the largest the motoring organisation has ever seen from a fuel retailer.

“These unprecedented times are leading to unprecedented price cuts on fuel.

“These savings will directly benefit those people who continue to rely on their vehicles for essential journeys.”

Mr Williams did, however, urge motorists to heed government advice and “only travel if it absolutely needed”.

Darker side

Petrol prices will fall to a level last seen four years ago, said Mr Williams. Diesel will return to prices last seen in summer 2017.

“However, there is a darker side to these price cuts. Smaller independent forecourts who will already have been struggling due to a loss of trade recently will be extremely hard-pushed to reduce their prices at the present time with fewer people driving.

“It’s crucial they stay in business as they provide such an important service to drivers in parts of the country where the supermarkets have no footprint.”

Petrol could be 17p a litre CHEAPER, says RAC

oil price drops should mean petrol savings for motorists says RAC

The price of oil has plunged in recent weeks, culminating in what the RAC is calling “the biggest single daily drop in the oil price in 20 years”.

Fuel prices have been dropping, but there’s the potential for even more savings. The RAC says that UK motorists should not be content with the current savings. “Petrol and diesel are still overpriced despite two rounds of cuts from the supermarkets last month”.

That’s how RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams concluded his opening statement on what the plummeting price of oil should mean for UK drivers. He added: “The last time we saw the wholesale price of petrol this low was in March 2016 which led to an average price of 106p a litre two weeks later. That’s nearly 17p a litre below the current average of 122.85p”.

petrol pump

In the past, single-figure movements in per-litre prices were headline-worthy. Now, if fuel prices matched those of 2016, which were a response to oil prices the same as where they’re at today, serious savings could be made. Fifty-five litres of petrol could be £9.35 cheaper than the current average price.

The RAC is realistic, however. Such a drop based on a one-day fall in oil prices would be wishful thinking. However, motorists “ought to see at least 10p a litre coming off the price of unleaded in the next fortnight”. This “would produce an average of 113p – a price last seen in October 2016”.

“We strongly urge every fuel retailer – large and small – to pass on these savings as soon as possible. But we expect the big supermarkets who sell the lion’s share of fuel to lead the way with some swift and significant cuts in the next few days.”

Could the Chancellor see an opportunity for a cash grab?

petrol

It’s uncertain how the Chancellor will respond in the forthcoming Budget. Williams continued: “We strongly hope he does not see this as an opportunity to hike fuel duty given the current volatility of the oil market”.

Why has oil dropped in price?

Coronavirus has caused a slump in demand, with travel restrictions across the world. That’s been the cause of the overall drop over the last few weeks. We can thank Russia for the latest single-day drop, however. 

fuel prices drop coronavirus

“Ironically, the latest oil price collapse has been brought on by OPEC and its allies, principally Russia, failing to agree another round of production cuts to prop up the barrel price in the wake of the slump caused by the coronavirus impacting global demand,” Williams explained.

“Russia appears to want to keep the price of oil low to hurt the US’s shale oil production, while Saudi Arabia seems to want to make a point to Russia that it can withstand an even lower oil price as its cost of production is the lowest in the world.”

Coronavirus causes fastest decline in fuel prices for 20 years

Coronavirus causes sharpest fuel price drop for 20 years

The latest RAC Fuel Watch data gives some cause for celebration for motorists. Fuel prices have fallen at a speed not seen since the year 2000.

The decline is due to fears about the coronavirus, says the RAC. Over the course of February, unleaded petrol fell by around 3p per litre, while diesel fell by 4.2p per litre. 

That means the average petrol car with a 55-litre tank is now £1.61 cheaper to fill than it was in January. A typical diesel car is now £2.33 cheaper to fill.

Average prices for petrol and diesel sit at 124p per litre and 127p per litre respectively, down from 127p and 131p.

ultimate guide to find cheap fuel

Not only are these the sharpest drops since 2000, they’re actually on the leaderboard for all-time declines. The drop in petrol is the 19th fastest ever recorded, while the diesel drop ranks 11th.

So why the cheaper fuel? The price for a barrel of oil dropped by a sixth in the last 10 days of the month. Again, this is attributed to the coronavirus.

That left the end-of-month wholesale price of petrol at 90p per litre, with diesel at 92p per litre.

insurers don't always cover misfuelling

Because of this, the RAC is calling for fuel prices to drop further still. The last time wholesale prices were that low, petrol and diesel were 5p and 8p per litre cheaper at the pumps than they are now. 

“February was a good month for drivers with two rounds of supermarket price cuts,” said RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams.

fuel prices drop coronavirus

“These resulted in 3p being shaved off the average price of petrol and 4p off diesel. While it is good drivers are benefiting from lower forecourt prices, in reality, the wholesale price is such that the big four supermarkets, which dominate UK fuel retailing, should cut their prices again.

“The oil price has slumped due to the spread of the coronavirus prompting fears of slower global demand. This may well lead to a move from oil producer group OPEC and its allies to restrict production when they stage an extraordinary meeting in Vienna on Friday. If they decide to take action to prop up the barrel price it would very likely put an end to falling forecourt fuel prices.”

New advisory fuel rates March 2020

New advisory fuel rates published by HMRC

New advisory fuel rates March 2020

The latest advisory fuel rates (AFR) have been published by HM Revenue and Customs.

The changes for petrol, diesel and LPG cars will come into force on 1 March 2020 and apply to employees using a company car.

There’s no change for diesel cars with an engine size of 1,600cc or less, with the reimbursement rate remaining at 9p per mile. Similarly, the rate for 1,601cc to 2,000cc diesel engines stays at 11p per mile.

However, the AFR for diesel engines over 2,000cc is dropping from 14p to 13p. Similarly, the rate for petrol engines over 2,000cc is decreasing from 21p to 20p.

Petrol engines of 1,400cc or less stay at 12p, while the rate for 1,401cc to 2,000c petrol cars remains at 14p.

Hybrid cars are treated as either petrol or diesel cars for this purpose. Meanwhile, the rate for fully electric cars is 4p per mile – electricity is not a fuel for car benefit purposes.

The AFR for LPG cars with a 1,401cc to 2,000cc engine is increasing by a penny to 10p per mile. A summary of the new rates can be found in the table below.

HMRC calculates the AFR using current fuel prices. The details can be found here, but in summary, the current price of petrol is 123.8p per litre. Diesel is 128.2p, while LPG is listed at 68.5 per litre.

Fuel economy on LPG cars is assumed to be 20 percent lower than petrol due to lower volumetric energy density.

New advisory fuel rates for company cars

Advisory fuel rates from 1 March 2020

Engine sizePetrol (per mile)LPG (per mile)Diesel (per mile)
1,400cc or less12p8p
1,401cc to 2,000cc14p10p
1,600cc or less9p
1,601cc to 2,000cc11p
Over 2,000cc20p14p13p

What are advisory fuel rates?

Companies use the advisory fuel rates when reimbursing employees for business travel in their company cars or when they require employees to repay the cost of fuel used for private travel.

If a company pays for the expenses at a rate no higher than the AFR for the car in question, they are not required to pay Class 1A National Insurance. It is accepted that there is no taxable profit gained.

However, a company can use its own rate where a lower rate is required. An example could be if a company car is proven to be more fuel efficient than the AFR suggests.

The government reviews the advisory fuel rates on a quarterly basis, so the next update will be on 1 June 2020.

Motorists 'demand action' against extortionate motorway fuel prices

Motorists want action against ‘exploitative’ motorway fuel prices

Motorists 'demand action' against extortionate motorway fuel prices

A poll of 1,415 motorists has found 90 percent want action taken against fuel vendors with significantly higher prices on motorways. Motorway fuel prices can be up to 37 pence per litre more.

Additionally, 94 percent of drivers said they want to see the price of motorway-sold fuel brought into line with prices elsewhere. The government already announced plans to investigate high prices at motorway filling stations. However, little has come of it so far in terms of price changes.

According to the RAC Fuel Watch, the current average price of diesel in the UK is 127p per litre, while petrol 124p is per litre. Yet many motorway filling station charge much more.

ultimate guide to find cheap fuel

As an example, I just checked a route on Waze from where I live in Suffolk down to Brands Hatch in Kent. Prices for petrol didn’t go over 131p per litre all the way down the A11. However, as soon as the route switched to the M11, Birchanger Services popped up as the next stop, with a dizzying fuel price of 147p per litre.

If I were to fill a 55-litre tank at Birchanger, therefore, I’d pay £80, instead of £69 at my local vendor. That’s an £11 difference.

Asda fuel savings 2020

“The results of the Motorpoint poll clearly show the strength of feeling among motorists about the ‘exploitative’ price of fuel on our motorways,” said Mark Carpenter, chief executive officer at Motorpoint.

“While many drivers value having the services available, and don’t mind paying a small premium for the convenience, the current disparity between the price of fuel on our motorways and the price of fuel elsewhere are completely unjustifiable and action is needed to bring them more in line with each other.”