Alarming fuel prices impact University students in Auckland

May 25, 2018

Alarming fuel prices impact University students in Auckland

Prices are only set to get higher at this Kingsland Gull. Photo: Gabrielle Tutheridge

Students fear that they will not be able to afford fuel as prices continue to surge.

On July 1st, fuel will be taxed in Auckland by a maximum rate of 10 cents, and this is sending students into panic mode.

Nina Bly-Pieterson, a 20-year-old communications student, says the rising prices will impact her a lot.

“It’s so expensive, even now that they have put the minimum wage up, it means nothing because you are paying that much for fuel to get to work or where you need to go,” she says.

Fuel companies are trying to combat these rising prices but low-priced fuel company Gull says most are out of their power.

Rohan Mehta, Gull pricing analyst, says “The 10c increase across Auckland is something that is beyond our control. This unfortunately will have to be passed onto the customers.”

The fuel tax will have a 10-year duration, on both diesel and petrol.

Lexi Ross, a 21-year-old AUT student, is upset about the rising price of petrol.

“This will be quite taxing on my bank account, as it’s already a struggle to afford petrol weekly with the amount of travelling I do,” she says.

Mr Mehta acknowledged that students are scarce when it comes to money but he says, “It’s not just students, people across all of society are always conscious about how much they spend on fuel.”

Phil Twyford, minister of transport, was too busy to comment on the impact of which this will have on students.

In the future, Mr Mehta believed it is likely that self-serve stations will be more apparent to keep the rising prices down. Although Gull will continue to keep prices as low as they can.

“As far as we are concerned, we will always honour our commitment to provide the most competitive prices…Invariably our prices are significantly lower and our opposition then follow that price down,” he says.

Ms Bly-Pieterson says she does her best to avoid high fuel prices.

“I try to go to BP on a day when they have 10 cents off… I keep an eye out for what’s the cheapest, so then I will go there.”

Ms Bly-Pieterson does admit the fuel tax could be favourable in the long-term.

“It will be good when they use that money to improve the public transport, but for those 15 years we are just going to be paying an excessive amount of money when we can’t even use public transport because it is pretty average.”

Ms Ross says the government should consider students.

“The government should have some sort of student discount for fuel, or have some sort of weekly or monthly allowance for fuel,” she says.

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