CHRISTMAS has come early for motorists in Ashmont and Alfredtown amid revelations Silvalite and Metro Petroleum have consistently sold the region’s cheapest petrol in the last year.
Ashmont’s Silvalite service station set the petrol price war alight on Tuesday after selling the cheapest fuel in the state at just 115.9 per litre.
It comes despite costs across NSW reaching a weekly high-point on Monday afternoon.
Prices at the two independent fuel providers sat around 10 cents per litre lower than the state’s average and 13 cents per litre lower than Wagga’s average, according to the NRMA.
On Tuesday alone, both Silvalite and Metro sold their Unleaded 91 petrol at 20 cents per litre cheaper than BP’s store on Edward Street – which peaked at 135.9 as the city’s most expensive place to fill up.
NRMA spokeswoman Rebecca Page said the role of the independent servo to keep the supermarket chains on their toes was particularly important in regional areas like Wagga.
“The supply and demand relationship is a little bit different; it’s not quite like Sydney where you have hundreds of service stations trying to gain the edge,” she said.
“If the service stations aren’t in serious competition, they don’t have that necessity to drive their prices down.”
Meanwhile, the operator of an independent Wagga service station told The Daily Advertiser how the “little guys” can manage to keep their prices down and challenge the industry’s powerhouses.
Lake Village Service Station and Car Wash owner-operator James Smithson said loyalty and charm were key attributes, alongside low prices.
“As I have said before, I couldn’t afford to cut the prices too deep,” he said.
“There is a little room to move, but what we focus on is the repeat customers that we have.”
It comes just one week after the cost of Wagga’s fuel rose by 6.7 cents as the city’s motorists continue to be slugged by fluctuating prices.
Wagga motorist and frequent interstate driver Colin Forbes told The Daily Advertiser he saved hundreds of dollars every month by using the NSW government’s FuelCheck app to find bottom dollar petrol prices.
“Definitely head down to Ashmont a fair bit for fuel – even the Metro down there is pretty cheap compared to the ones across town,” he said.
“People brush it off as a few cents but it all adds up.”
Since August, The Department of Fair Trading have forced all petrol station operators to update their prices live on the fuelcheck.nsw.gov.au website. Operators who fail to do so can be fined.
Extracted from The Daily Advertiser