Tired of paying more for petrol than their Sydney counterparts, a group of Canberrans are using social media to take the fight for fairer petrol prices into their own hands.
The group created ACT Fuel Watch, a Facebook page that monitors petrol prices in the territory and surrounds, on Sunday evening (4 January 2015). In just five days, the page has attracted over 10,000 likes (see below image) and is playing a role in helping to lower Canberra’s petrol prices.
Ben from ACT Fuel Watch says that the motivation for starting the Facebook page was to “have a crack at social change and help families”. He says the page is not affiliated with any service station, or with Costco.
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“Outside of Canberra, there’s a perception that we’re all wealthy public servants with too much time off, however, a lot of people here do it tough,” he says.
“In Canberra, petrol prices were going to be kept high until they were pushed. Consumers needed to start demanding lower prices.”
It’s certainly a timely endeavour, as NRMA told media on Wednesday that Canberrans should be paying just over $1 a litre for petrol. Currently, Canberrans pay up to $1.34 per litre.
Ben’s advice to motorists is to fill up on Saturdays, and to fill up at petrol stations offering the cheapest fuel (ACT Fuel Watch publishes a list of Canberra’s cheapest and most expensive servos each day).
“Research has shown than Saturday is the day that most people fill up, and it’s also the day that they fill up with the most petrol. What I’d like people to do is to head to the better value suppliers that offer the cheaper fuel, which will limit the business going to more expensive stations,” he says.
“Tomorrow is an opportunity where people aren’t rushing, they’re not in a hurry to get to work, and so it’s easier to drive to Majura or Fyshwick or even Queanbeyan, where the average price of fuel is lower.”