10 December 2015

IT doesn’t matter whether you’ve been naughty or nice, Sunshine Coast motorists are unlikely to get $1/litre petrol for Christmas.

But you might still pick up a bargain if you shop around.

The RACQ set hearts racing this week when it predicted some service stations could be bringing a bit of Christmas cheer to motorists, courtesy of a fall in world oil prices.

But it seems Brisbane drivers are the only ones likely to be adding service stations to their Christmas card list.

Unleaded fuel has already dropped to 104.9c/litre at some metropolitan outlets – much lower than the 116.9c/litre being widely offered on the Sunshine Coast.

RACQ spokesperson Renee said global oil prices were at their lowest since December 2008 – the height of the global financial crisis.

But the average price of petrol was yet to hit the lows motorists enjoyed at the beginning of the year, when prices plummeted.

“The average cost of unleaded petrol is currently about 4c/litre higher than it was in January, largely due to a weaker Australian Dollar and higher margins further up the fuel supply chain,” Ms Smith said.

She hoped prices would fall in coming days but admitted $1/litre petrol was more likely in Brisbane than on the Sunshine Coast.

“It’s the great unknown at this stage but it’s disappointing the Sunshine Coast is slower to discount than the rest of south-east Queensland,” she said.

“The same cycle of highs and lows operates around the south-east, so if it’s happening in Brisbane, there is no reason why it wouldn’t and shouldn’t happen on the Sunshine Coast.”

While Brisbane’s cheapest petrol was 104.9c/litre at Eagleby, many Sunshine Coast outlets were at 116.9c/litre yesterday, just under the RACQ’s “fair price” of 117.4c/litre.

Several outlets were pushing the average up, most notably in Nambour where most outlets were selling at 129.5c/litre and helping push the coast average to 122.9c/litre.

At the same time the Brisbane average was 119.8c/litre and the Gold Coast 117.7c/litre.

Ms Smith encouraged motorists to fill their tanks now, just in case the unexpected happened and prices began to rise instead of fall.

The once-regular price cycle in the south-east had all but disappeared so it was difficult to know when prices would increase again.

“We are hopeful these lows stay around into the new year but the cycle is impossible to predict.”

Extracted in full from the Sunshine Coast Daily.