Bay drivers urged to ‘shop around’ for fuel

MOTORISTS in Hervey Bay need to shop around to avoid paying more at the petrol pump than their Maryborough counterparts.

That is the advice of RACQ spokeswoman Lucinda Ross.

"The price gap between Maryborough and Hervey Bay is due to less competition in Hervey Bay," she said.

"Motorists in Hervey Bay aren't shopping around and fuel companies are taking advantage of this.

"Hervey Bay residents should use apps like RACQ's Fair Fuel Finder to locate the cheapest site, even if this only saves them a cent or two.

"Only then will fuel companies feel the need to compete and lower their prices."

Prices in Maryborough have remained relatively stable since reaching 15-year lows when statewide coronavirus restrictions were in place earlier this year.

For the first time since 2005, petrol was less than a dollar in the Heritage Coty, although prices have crept back up since then.

"Unleaded prices in Maryborough have been fairly stable since June," Ms Ross said.

"We did see indicative retail margins increase during the COVID lockdown and the oil price collapse, but indicative retail margins have come back down in recent months.

"In Hervey Bay, prices were slower to fall and indicative retail margins stayed higher for longer.

"The good news for drivers, is in July prices fell to a reasonable level.

"We'd consider unleaded prices in Maryborough and Hervey Bay to be fair at this time."

An attempt was made by some retailers in Maryborough to push up prices last week, Ms Ross said.

"This attempt has failed and the average price in Maryborough has come back down, and is currently at 112.8cpl.

"In Hervey Bay, prices have been stable at about 115.8cpl for most of August.

"We're not expecting any dramatic change in fuel prices in Maryborough or Hervey Bay, however, as the oil price continues to strengthen, bowser prices in Queensland will slowly creep up."

Ms Ross urged motorists to keep shopping around and buy the cheapest fuel available when they could.

"Drivers should always shop around, because not only do you save by buying from the cheapest site, you also send a message to the more expensive fuel companies that they need to compete for your business," she said.

"This drives competition and keeps fuel prices low."