Perth’s petrol prices have soared to record figures and the new fortnightly price cycle is leaving many motorists confused and angry.
FuelWatch Manager Ben Derecki said motorists could no longer assume that every Tuesday was the “cheap petrol day” and would need to change their habits to save money.
“This latest change in the cycle will make it more difficult for Perth motorists to find cheaper petrol if they fill up every week,” Mr Derecki said.
“For those who fill up fortnightly, it may be possible to time those visits to the petrol station to coincide with the bottom of the price cycle every second Tuesday, but that task is more difficult for those who need to fill up more regularly.”
Perth’s recent average fuel prices have been hovering around 179cpl for regular unleaded petrol.
This is due to the higher price of crude oil, a crucial ingredient in petrol.
For almost two years the weekly price cycle has been consistent with most fuel outlets in Perth, with the cheapest numbers appearing every Tuesday, right before the price hikes on Wednesdays.
In recent weeks, most of Perth’s major fuel companies have been conforming to a fortnightly cycle, which will mean price hikes occur every second Wednesday.
The cheapest day is still a Tuesday but will now only occur every second Tuesday. However, if recent figures are anything to go by, ‘cheap’ Tuesdays will offer rather pricey rates of around 157cpl (recorded Tuesday November 2).
For people like full-time university student Tabby Galluccio, who relies on her car for transport, filling up fortnightly is not an option.
“It’s rather enraging actually,” Ms Galluccio said.
“I drive over an hour to and from uni at least five days a week (and) the amount of petrol I go through barely lasts me one week, let alone two.
“I study Musical Theatre full-time, so I barely have time for a job. If this two-week cycle is a permanent thing, my bank account is going to suffer.
“I really feel for people who are in a similar situation.”
Mr Derecki said: “We would suggest that motorists who need to fill up mid-cycle consider only partially filling their vehicle until they can fill up closer to the bottom of the two-week price cycle.
“The price cycle disruption comes at the worst possible time while we are seeing record prices at the bowser due to increases in international oil and petrol prices, so the need to find less expensive fuel to make savings is even more important for consumers.”
Whether or not the new fortnightly price cycle will become a permanent measure is still unknown.