Rocketing fuel prices could see more and more motorists getting on their bikes. After earlier this week reporting that nearly all motorists who cycle cite exercise, fun, and money-saving benefits as top reasons for switching to pedal power, the price of petrol could soon be the biggest factor to getting more people on two wheels.
As petrol prices spike at a six month high of 104.7p per litre, Brits face the prospect of another 2p per litre rise in fuel duty from this Tuesday. New analysis from independent price comparison and switching service uSwitch.com reveals that consumers will be forced to shell out an extra £29 per year as a result of the impending price hike - equating to an additional £1.16 for every tank of petrol they buy.
In total, this will cost UK drivers more than £36 million in the next month alone.
And if this isn’t bad enough consumers could be subject to a 5p a litre rise in total. Further knocks to drivers include government plans to end the temporary cut in VAT on January 1, 2010 - just months after the fuel duty increase comes into force. In just six months petrol prices have already increased from 90.6p to today’s average of 104.7p – a rise of 15.6 per cent.
Mark Monteiro, insurance expert at uSwitch.com said: "As Chancellor Alistair Darling comes under increasing pressure to scrap next week's fuel duty increase, the outlook for drivers remains bleak. With petrol prices rocketing 15.6% in just six months adding recessionary insult to injury, it is unsurprising that consumers are finding themselves financially squeezed. It was bad enough last year when petrol prices spiked at an all time high, but in the current climate, drivers are by no means in any position to absorb these spiralling costs.”
And while uSwitch.com offer a number of tips to save on fuel when travelling by car, the most obvious way to decrease the amount of petrol you burn is to leave the car at home - probably the best way to decrease the amount of petrol you burn, is to leave the car at home and cycle.
A quarter of all car journeys in Britain are less than two miles long, and cycling is a cheap, clean and healthy alternative.