Drivers will save hundreds of dollars a year at the petrol pump following extension of the mandatory Fuel Price Transparency Scheme.
In good news for drivers heading out of town ahead of the long weekend, the South Australian Government has announced it will extend the scheme, after the measure was included in the state budget.
The budget includes $1.8 million over four years to extend the scheme after a successful trial and is among measures to help ease cost of living pressures facing South Australians.
Under the Fuel Price Transparency Scheme, retailers must report their prices to a monitoring database within 30 minutes of changing the price at the pump. Drivers can then access real-time information via a number of free apps to help them shop around for the cheapest fuel - a useful tool to seek out savings including ahead of periods of high demand such as long weekends.
RAA surveys reveal motorists using apps have saved an average of $28.50 per month.
In recent weeks the state’s consumer watchdog, Consumer and Business Services (CBS), has been out in force checking service stations are keeping prices regularly updated under the scheme.
CBS has conducted more than 860 inspections of petrol stations and received approximately 830 complaints about potential breaches since the scheme began in March 2021. Approximately 160 matters have resulted warning letters, and eight fines have been issued. Businesses face court fines of up to $10,000 for non-compliance.
Attributable to Andrea Michaels
With soaring inflation continuing to hit the hip pocket hard, many South Australian households are experiencing financial stress.
I’m pleased to be able to continue the scheme and ensure service stations do the right thing, especially in the current economic climate where every dollar counts for families.
No one wants to pay more than they have to at the petrol pump and the trial scheme proved itself as a highly useful tool for many South Australians looking to fill up.
The scheme has been a real benefit to many South Australians who have been able to shop around and find the best fuel prices near them.
I strongly encourage anyone looking to head away for the long weekend to download an app and use it, if they’ve not already done so.
Attributable to RAA fuel expert Mark Borlace
We know this scheme is popular with motorists seeking to save money at the pump, which is why RAA has been lobbying for it to be introduced and made permanent and therefore we welcome today’s announcement by the Minister.
RAA surveys reveal motorists have saved an average of $28.50 per month by using the app since the price transparency scheme’s launch in March year.
Our surveys also indicate a majority of motorists (54%) now use fuel apps.
Based on these figures, we estimate SA motorists using price transparency apps are saving around $26m a year in total.
That’s a great return for taxpayers given the relatively low cost of operating the scheme.
Attributable to Commissioner for Consumer Affairs Dini Soulio
CBS officers have been undertaking spot inspections, targeting service stations that have been subject to multiple complaints for breaching the scheme.
I’d also like to thank those in the community who have seen service stations doing the wrong thing and letting us know.
With this additional funding, our inspectors will be able to continue carrying out our compliance program and ensure petrol stations are adhering to the scheme.
To report a service station that may be in breach, visit the CBS website at www.cbs.sa.gov.au.