Petrol hike: Carpool and avoid unnecessary long journeys, says minister

Lameez Omarjee
2018-07-06 05:45
Post a comment 0

Road users should try carpooling, avoid unnecessary journeys and practice "economical driving techniques" to reduce the impact of the fuel hike on their pockets, says Energy Minister Jeff Radebe.

Radebe was responding to a question by EFF MP Elsabe Ntlangwini about the fuel hikes in recent months. Parliament had released the written reply on Tuesday afternoon.

The inland price for a litre of 95 octane unleaded petrol rose to a record R16.02 on Wednesday. The coastal price is R15.43. Prices are expected to increase again in August.

In his response, the energy minister explained that the rand/dollar exchange rate and the cost of imported oil were among the biggest contributing factors to the price of fuel.

Economists have warned that consumers would be hit by higher transport costs, and possibly food prices, as the cost of production at farms would increase.

Ester Ochse from FNB Wealth and Investments shared some more steps consumers could take to manage rising transport costs.

1. Avoid peak time travel

Public transport users may not have flexibility in this regard, but those driving with cars can try to avoid peak traffic. "This will not only save fuel, but equally helps you save a rand or two."

2. Consider lift clubs

"Colleagues and friends who stay in the same residential areas must consider sharing travel costs through lift clubs," said Ochse.

3. Maximise rewards

Some banks have partnerships with retailers or petrol stations so that consumers can get funds back by using a certain facility or swiping a card instead of paying with cash.

4. Monthly transport tickets

Make use of discounts by buying tickets in bulk for public transport services such as trains or buses, explained Ochse.

"This is a major cost-saving [tip] for public transport users, as it cushions you against any sudden increases in fares."

Ochse added that consumers had to do more with less disposable income and needed to make adjustments to "keep their head(s) above water".

* It's National Savings Month. Do you have a successful savings plan or story to tellShare it with us now and help others to also become Savings Heroes. For more on savings visit our special Savings Issue.

* Sign up to Fin24's top news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO FIN24 NEWSLETTER