Yesterday, people at the gas pump were resigned to higher prices as unleaded 91 was over $3 a liter for some in the South.
AA Otago District Council Chairman Malcolm Budd said AA members were concerned. Uncertainty overseas as Russia invaded Ukraine seemed at least partly responsible for the price hike.
“I don’t know what the answer is,” Mr. Budd said. “We certainly hear it from our members: the price of fuel keeps going up.”
Rising fuel prices had real consequences for everyone in the South, Budd said.
It was not just parents who came to pick up their children from school. As transportation costs rose, so did the price of daily consumer goods, he said.
Fuel price tracking app Gaspy pegged the national average for unleaded 91 at $2.86 per liter yesterday, a 10.5% increase from last month.
Prices in the south ranged from $2.65 per liter at NPD Self Serve Andy Bay to $3.17 per liter at Z Queenstown. .
A motorist at the station said petrol prices were “far too high”. Another Queenstown resident who recently returned from a road trip said diesel prices were “soaring in some areas”.
“When we first traveled it was pretty consistent, all around $1.97 a litre, then all of a sudden it went crazy – every company charges differently. We’ve seen it [diesel] as low as $1.73 and as high as $2.23 – that’s a 50 cent difference.”
A Dunedin taxi driver says it’s time for the government to make electric vehicles more affordable.
“Once it hits $3 a litre, they won’t complain to us and stop this,” he said.
A student from Dunedin said petrol prices were “stupid”.
Two years ago, his toy car took $50 to fill up. Yesterday afternoon at the NPD Self Serve Andy Bay, she spent $83 and she arrived at the gas station with a quarter tank.
“That’s the demand – no one will stop driving,” she said.
A Pak’nSave Dunedin motorist said petrol prices were “crazy” but shrugged.
“It’s out of our hands.”
And while another agreed, he said it was important to keep things in perspective.
“It could be worse,” he said.
“At least our houses aren’t being bombed.”
Unleaded 91 topped $3 a liter in Auckland and Wellington last week.
— HAMISH MACLEAN and LUCY WORMALD