What The Fuel Rise Really Means For Families

by Baba

In 2011 for an average family in the UK, life without the car is almost nigh impossible. There’s the school run, the after school activities, work, shopping, outings and other general day to day journeys. The price of fuel in January is around 20% higher than this time last year.  Even factoring in small cars and public transport where possible, it all adds up to a pretty expensive bill.
Rail fares rise every year and the cost of food is inflating much more quickly than average wages, which moved very little last year. Despite the recent cut of 1p on fuel duty and the introduction of the Fair Fuel Stabiliser in the March budget, motorists will continue to see prices rise at the pump.

Ultimately the price is set by the countries who control the supply. Given the unrest in the oil producing nations in the Middle East, this is bad news for families.

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What it means is yet more economising. And at least this might be good for your health. What can you do to make a difference?

Walking or cycling on short trips can be fun and a free family activity in itself.


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Catching a train or bus especially with family friendly discount fares can save a fortune not only in petrol, but also parking charges. Buses are guaranteed to have routes to get you main attractions in your area so are a cheap way to give the whole family a fun filled day out!

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Another option might be to meet the neighbours and start a car pool. This could benefit everyone from fewer cars on the road as well as saving you some money.

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There are also several tips and techniques for driving that can help save on fuel, such as smooth acceleration and braking and making sure that your tyres are pumped to the right level.

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Another point you may want to consider – Is it time to downsize your car? Get a more fuel efficient model? It’s a long term game we are playing here and this might be something to consider in the next year or two at least.

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We are all feeling the squeeze of the tight economy and making ends meet for families can be a real challenge. Look again at your budget and see what changes you can make. Small changes can make a big difference when they all add up. At least with summer coming on, we will all want to walk, run and cycle more. Get out there.

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