Holidaymakers should avoid service station rip offsUK motorway stops charge far more for fuel

21 June 2011

Woman filling car up at petrol station

Which? is warning holidaymakers of the high costs at motorway service stations

With the number of people staying in the UK for summer holidays increasing, Which? has warned drivers not to get ripped off by the high fuel prices at motorway service stations.

Half of the 1,000 members of public surveyed by Which? said they would be taking a trip in the UK in the coming months, with a 10% increase in the number of Brits planning to spend their main holiday in the country to save money.

But we’ve found prices of fuel and other necessities at motorway service stations could be far higher than holidaymakers think.

Want to save yourself some money on the forecourt? Read our guide to Find the cheapest fuel.

Petrol 6p a litre more expensive at motorway service stations

We found that motorway forecourts charge an average 6p more for a litre of petrol and 7p more for diesel compared with fuel stops away from the motorway.

This adds nearly £5 to a typical 70-litre tank of diesel.

Fuel pump in car

Which? investigation reveals fuel and other necessities cost more at motorway service stations

We also found that basic necessities like bottled water vary greatly in price – sometimes even within the same service station.

The cheapest 500ml bottle it found (M&S Simply Food, at several different Moto service stations) was just 75p. The most expensive was an eye-watering £1.99.

Not one of the 21 stations we visited offered drivers free cash machines. All of those checked charged between £1.95 and £1.99 for each transaction.

Richard Lloyd, executive director of Which?, said: 'One in two cash-strapped families have decided to holiday in the UK this summer, but they’ll need to watch out for pumped up prices at motorway service stations.

'Not only are petrol and basic necessities like water more expensive, they’ll even be charged to take their own money out at a cash point.'

Struggling to decide between buying a petrol or diesel car? Use our Petrol vs diesel tool to work out which will be cheaper to run.

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