With recent economic uncertainty and the rising cost of living, budgeting for the necessities has become a daunting task. Filling up the petrol tank each week takes a lot out of your pocket, so here are some tips on how to save a dollar or two at the pump.
Shop around: While you may be loyal to a particular petrol station, other places may have cheaper prices. Also be on the lookout for the weekly cheap day. Originally, it was on Tuesdays but this has been subject to change. Don’t forget to use your 4 cents off per litre shopping dockets at certain service stations.
Drive at a modest speed: You might think that the faster you drive, the quicker you arrive at your destination. But not only is it dangerous and illegal to drive over the speed limits, more fuel per kilometre is consumed at higher speeds than at 60 km/h. Also accelerate moderately because when quickly accelerating or suddenly braking, the car consumes more petrol.
Reduce usage of air conditioning: During the summer, there are going to be some scorching hot days when you need to cool yourself down. Try to leave the windows open when driving or parking your car in a shady area. Minimising the usage of your car air conditioner can reduce the fuel consumption significantly.
Downsize your car: If you are shopping for a new car, think about purchasing a small sedan or hatchback because they are more fuel-efficient than big four wheel drives or larger sedans.
Buy a hybrid car: Hybrid technology uses a combination of petrol and electric battery power, which means you do not need to fill up as much at the pump. For example, the Toyota Prius, a hybrid car, uses 3.9L of petrol per 100km. Comparatively, the smaller and petrol fuelled Toyota Corolla uses 7.4L of petrol per 100km. When a hybrid car brakes, controllers redirect the kinetic energy back to the battery for recycling. In a normal car, that kinetic energy would usually be lost as heat or noise.
Switch to a diesel car: The diesel is marginally more expensive than petrol. However, cars on diesel use less fuel per kilometre than petrol run cars. For example, the fuel consumption of an automatic Jeep Wrangler Sport is 11.9L of petrol per 100km. The same model in diesel would run on 8.1L of diesel for 100km. So the diesel option is a money saver.
While you may not have the cash in hand to purchase a new car, you could consider opting for auto finance.