Petrol prices cut as Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons by up to 3p a litre – what you need to know

The UK’s biggest supermarkets have cut petrol prices by 3p sparking a new supermarket price war.

Asda was the first retailer to reduce the price of a litre of petrol by 3p to £1.23 at its 322 stations on Friday morning.

The decision means that any driver filling up at one of the supermarket’s petrol station will pay no more than 122.7ppl on unleaded, whilst Diesel remains the same at 126.7ppl.

Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons all pledged to implement the same price cuts over the weekend.

Tesco, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s also pledged to cut prices of a litre of petrol by 3p (Picture: Shutterstock)

Motorists felt the effects of the price cut at Tesco and Asda’s forecourts from Friday, while Morrisons’ came into effect on Saturday and Sainsbury’s delayed the savings until Sunday.

Confirming the price cut, Dave Tyrer, senior fuel buyer at Asda, said: “With wholesale costs falling, we’re pleased to be able to pass on these savings onto our customers.”

David Pegg, fuel buying manager for Sainsbury’s, added: “As we head into Autumn after a busy summer, we are committed to helping our customers live well for less, whether they’re stocking up on groceries or refuelling their cars.”

‘Long overdue’

The RAC described the prices cuts as “long overdue” (Picture: Shutterstock)

But the RAC described the cuts as “long overdue” as drivers have been paying more than they should have for weeks.

Simon Williams, a spokesperson for RAC, said: “Drivers have been paying more than they should have for weeks due to savings in the wholesale price of petrol which retailers have failed to pass on until today.

“We pointed out this at the start of the month, yet it has taken them over a week to react. In the meantime they have all benefited nicely while drivers continued to pay more than they should.

“There have been times in the past when retailers have acted more transparently by passing on savings brought about by lower wholesale prices, but unfortunately this won’t go down as one of them.”

MPs call for petrol price watchdog

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Petrol pump labels have changed: here’s all you need to know

Earlier this year, a group of MPs called for an independent fuel price watchdog – Pumpwatch – to monitor the cost of petrol and diesel following accusations that the industry was increasing its profit margins at the expense of motorists.

i previously spoke to experts to help you cut your petrol or diesel car fuel costs. Here are our money saving tips.

From September, filling stations around the country have had to display new labels on their petrol and diesel pumps.

The new signs replace the simple “unleaded” or “diesel” wording as well as those indicating the octane rating of the fuel.

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Drivers ‘should be angry’ as retailers fail to pass on petrol savings

The RAC has said drivers should feel angry that filling stations around the country have not passed on significant savings on the cost of petrol in the last month.

The latest RAC Fuel Watch data shows that there was a small reduction in average costs around the country in August but this did not reflect the larger wholesale savings.

On wholesale markets, the price of petrol fell 4.38p to 96.57p per litre but across the UK the average price at the pump dropped just 0.27p to 128.88p.

Diesel also dropped, by a less significant 1p per litre, with just 0.38p of that saving being passed along to bring an average litre to 131.66p.

The RAC has now called on retailers to cut their forecourt prices to pass their savings on to customers.

2p per litre saving

Savings have been greatest at the big four supermarkets but still a fraction of the wholesale drop. (Photo: Shutterstock)
Savings have been greatest at the big four supermarkets but still a fraction of the wholesale drop. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Read more: How will a no-deal Brexit affect fuel prices?

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “Drivers have the right to feel angry that the price of fuel did not fall more in August than it did. With nearly 4.5p coming off the wholesale price of petrol drivers should have seen, at the very least, 2p a litre being knocked off at the pumps by the end of the month.”

The supermarket “big four” did reduce their prices slightly more than the average, with cuts of 0.55p on petrol and 0.6p on diesel bringing their prices to around 3.5p lower than the national average.

Mr Williams added: “While the average price charged by the supermarkets came down a little more than the UK average they should really have led the way with larger cuts which would have spurred other retailers to reduce their prices too.

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“By our calculations retailers ought to be charging around 126p for a litre of unleaded based on a wholesale price of 98p a litre, which many retailers will have bought at a couple of weeks ago, and then factoring in delivery, a reasonable margin of 5p a litre and VAT. As for the supermarkets they could easily be selling at around 122p.”

Regional differences

Regional data showed that drivers in the south-east paid most for both fuel types – 129.72ppl and 132.73ppl – while those in Northern Ireland enjoyed lower prices than the rest of the UK at 126.01ppl and 129.02ppl.

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“If Northern Ireland can charge a fairer price why can’t retailers in the rest of the UK do it?” said Williams. “For this reason we strongly urge all retailers outside of Northern Ireland to cut their prices in the next week by at least 2p a litre on both petrol and diesel.

“There was a time when a 4.5p reduction in the wholesale price would have led the supermarkets to cut their prices significantly, but unfortunately those days seem to have passed.

“Perhaps they are hedging their bets thinking there could be a further drop in the value of sterling which will could cause wholesale prices to increase again.”

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Morrisons is cutting 5p a litre off fuel for a limited time, here’s how to claim the discount

Supermarket chain Morrisons has announced that it is cutting its fuel prices for customers for a limited period.

The retailer – one of the UK’s biggest fuel suppliers – is offering a 5p per litre reduction on both petrol and diesel at its forecourts between now and the start of September.

To qualify for the discount customers need to spend £40 or more in a single transaction, after which they will be given a voucher that they can redeem the next time they fill up.

Vouchers are being issued from now until Sunday, August 25 but will remain valid until Sunday, September 1.

The deal means a driver filling an average family car’s 55-litre fuel tank can save £2.75 per fill-up.

Conditions

As is usual with such promotions there are conditions on how you can claim and use the discount voucher.

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petrol pump
The offer is valid on petrol, diesel and LPG. (Picture: Shutterstock)

For a start, you’ll only get a voucher for in-store grocery shopping. It’s not available on online purchases. It’s also not available to shoppers in the chain’s Gibraltar store.

You also have to make your in-store purchases before Sunday, August 25 and you’ll only get one voucher per transaction, no matter how much more than £40 you spend.

Certain products also don’t count towards the value of shopping, including fuel, tobacco, Lottery products, gift cards, infant/formula milk, cash-back, dry cleaning, fireworks, online Games and instant tickets, photo printing, saver stamps, postage stamps, mobile phone top-up cards, delivery charges, garden centre, cafe and pharmacy purchases.

Claiming the discount

The vouchers are valid for any single transaction buying petrol, diesel or LPG up to a maximum of 100 litres at a Morrisons-branded filling station (except Gibraltar). They are not valid at Texaco, BP or Esso forecourts with Morrisons concessions.

Read more: How will a no-deal Brexit affect fuel prices?

You can only use one coupon per fill up and they are only valid for one vehicle, so you can’t try and fill two cars in the same transaction.

They also don’t work at pay-at-pump – you have to hand over the coupon at the kiosk.

The offer comes after a jump in petrol prices in July undid much of the savings brought about by a price drop in June.

According to RAC Fuel Watch, the average price of a litre of unleaded currently stands at 128.74p, with diesel at 131.88p.

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