DRIVERS are continuing to get a "raw deal" at the pumps despite a record price drop last month, experts have said.
The RAC said average forecourt prices sank to 169.8p per litre at the end of August, but should be around 161p due to current wholesale costs.
The 12.3p drop in average prices during August was the largest monthly drop in records dating back 22 years.
But the fall in wholesale costs means this “only tells part of the story”, the RAC said.
The driving experts said the fall in prices was lead by independent retailers, rather than the major supermarkets.
Research found that some supermarkets were charging just 1.62p below the average price of petrol last month (168.18p), compared to the typical 3p.
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It also found that supermarkets in some parts of the country appeared to be charging much less for the same fuel than in other areas.
This comes after supermarkets including Asda, Morrisons, Tesco and Sainsbury's slashed their prices last month following a pricing war.
RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said: “For whatever reason, major retailers are choosing not to pass on in full the reductions in the wholesale price of unleaded they’ve been benefiting from for some considerable time.
“There is a very strong case for the biggest sellers of fuel to cut their forecourt petrol prices further.
“Some big supermarket sites aren’t too far off charging this – but there’s a real postcode lottery out there, with prices varying wildly depending on where a driver is in the country."
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Andrew Opie, director of food and sustainability at the British Retail Consortium, which represents supermarkets and other retailers, said: “Retailers understand the cost pressures facing motorists and will do everything they can to offer the best value-for-money across their forecourts, passing on cost reductions as they feed through the supply chain.”
How can I save money on fuel?
RAC fuel expert Rod Dennis said the best advice for filling up is no longer to assume supermarkets are the cheapest.
He said it's highly likely you'll find an independent retailers charging a lower price.
Independents buy new stock less frequently than the supermarkets as they don't sell as much.
This means they aren't as well positioned as their rivals to be able to snap up fuel at lower prices when they are sudden market drops.
Rod said: "Drivers must shop around for the best deal they can, and we applaud those independent retailers who are doing their best to charge a fairer price for fuel and support their local communities through this incredibly expensive time."
A Texaco petrol station in Walkden, Greater Manchester then claimed to be the "cheapest petrol station" in the UK after selling unleaded petrol at 159.9p a litre.
It can be difficult to spot independent petrol stations, but keeping an eye on local Facebook pages can help you stay aware of prices in your area.
Websites like Petrolprices.com also let you search for petrol stations offering the best prices near you.
It's free to use for your first 20 searches.
It's still worth checking petrol prices at supermarkets too though, as they are not set nationally, and prices can change locally to compete worth independent forecourts nearby.
Taking heavy items out of your car can help lessen the load and checking your tyre pressure can all help you increase fuel efficiency.
Or you could try using a loyalty scheme – many petrol stations operate them and they could see you racking up points which could be used to buy your petrol.
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