QUEENSLANDERS would be slugged thousands of dollars a year more to drive to work under record-high petrol prices, analysis shows.
New analysis reveals the average Queensland commuter, who according to the ABS travels 16.6km each way to and from work, will fork out $1344 a year for their commute at the current record-high fuel prices of $1.68/Litre
This is $355 more than just six months ago when fuel was selling for $1.24/litre.
The Courier-Mail has calculated the rising cost to drivers heading to and from work using ABS average commute distance data and RACQ modelling which suggests a typical car uses one litre of fuel per 10 kilometers.
It shows the Southeast’s thousands of long-distance commuters who travel to and from Brisbane each day will feel the pain at the bowser with those commuting from Logan watching their fuel bills spike by more than $555 on average while Ipswich drivers will pay $3566 a year, $940 more than they were in April.
“We’ve got global oil prices rising and at the same time we have the Australian dollar softening and that’s pushing up the wholesale price that the (fuel) retailers here pay and they pass that on to drivers and then some,” RACQ spokeswoman Lucinda Ross said.
“That’s the frustrating part is that particularly in Brisbane, many service stations are passing on outrageous margins.
“We’re paying more for fuel than the likes of Sydney and Melbourne and there’s no reason for Brisbane to be paying more.”
The pain is even worse for coastal commuters with those travelling from the Gold Coast now expected to pay $6000 a year on fuel, $1584 more than six months ago, while Caloundra commuters will pay $2054 more with an annual fuel bill of $7780.
The latest hike has brought Toowoomba commuter fuel bills soaring past the $10,000 mark with an extraordinary $2697 increase from $7516 six months ago.
The analysis by The Courier-Mail compares the difference in cost between the cheapest petrol day in 2018 and the dearest day this year for those who drive to work five days a week, 48 weeks of the year.
Ms Ross said Queensland has some of the highest transport costs in the country and it was crucial that drivers shopped around for the best deal.
“People here are struggling to afford to keep their cars on the road so when we see petrol prices going up as have been, it really hurts people,” she said.
“It’s really tough for people how are commuting, particularly some of those longer commutes from places like the Sunshine and Gold Coast into Brisbane.
“We would urge people to make sure they’re doing that research and filling up at the cheapest spot.”
The Queensland Government has vowed to introduced real-time fuel monitoring, with a trial program set to be launched in December.
“Informed Sources had already started to work on the aggregator software to ensure that Queensland motorists will be able to find the cheapest servo in town before Christmas.” Natural Resources Minister Anthony Lynham said on Thursday.
“With fuel prices hitting a four year high in the past couple of weeks, our fuel price reporting trial is on schedule to put informed buying power into motorists’ hands.”
It comes after an ACCC report found Brisbane motorists were being slugged more for fuel because of a lack of market compeition, bigger retail margins and a scarcity of independent fuel chains.
Expectant mother Bianca Emmerson drives from her home in Redcliffe north of Brisbane, to Belmont in the city’s southeast daily for work.
A trip to the bowser costs the financial planning assistant about $75, though she said that has increased by $20 in the past couple of months.
“I hate the prices. It doesn’t seem like a lot, but $15 to $20 a week (extra) is a lot for a family, especially when you are on a budget,” she said.
“I am eight months pregnant at the moment, so every little bit (of money) help.”
Newport mum Letitia Rowe and her husband spend a whopping $600 a week on fuel in the course of their work in the construction industry.
“We drive all over Brisbane for jobs, and it can take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour, but also it depends on the time of day, sometimes in peak hour traffic we could be driving for a lot longer,” she said.
“I reckon we spend $600 a week, about $300 each and that’s just Monday to Friday.”
Ms Rowe said the current record fuel prices were frustrating and made it difficult for families.
“When school holidays, Easter or Christmas comes around the fuel stations put their prices up again, so where they should stay at a reasonable price they don’t, they put the prices up and a lot of people are struggling and can’t afford to pay this extra money to take the kids out for the day or weekend,” she said.
“It’s getting ridiculous, completely out of hand.”
Extracted from Daily Telegraph