Fuel prices return to pre-pandemic levels ahead of Easter weekend

Fuel prices return to pre-pandemic levels ahead of Easter weekend

Rising fuel prices have reached pre-pandemic levels, hitting drivers venturing out on the roads over Easter.

The average cost of a litre of petrol and diesel at UK forecourts is £1.25 and £1.29 respectively, according to Government figures analysed by the PA news agency.

Pump prices have not been that high since February 2020.

The increase comes as coronavirus restrictions were eased across the UK this week.

RAC fuel spokesman, Simon Williams, said: “Drivers heading out further afield this Easter will sadly be greeted by the highest fuel prices for over a year.

“A tank of petrol or diesel now costs £10 more than it did in May 2020.

“While this is clearly disappointing, it’s also lucky pump prices haven’t yet gone higher.

“Oil producers’ efforts to limit supply and make the barrel price go higher have been somewhat scuppered by Covid movement restrictions still being in force in so many countries due to slow vaccination rollout.”

Average fuel prices sank to as low as £1.05 per litre of petrol and £1.12 per litre of diesel in May 2020, when oil prices collapsed due to lower demand as global economies shut down because of the pandemic.

Some retailers were even selling petrol below £1 per litre.

But most motorists were unable to take advantage of the low prices due to strict limits on travel.

Meanwhile, an AA-Yonder survey of 15,000 motorists indicated that the traditional Easter getaway will not take place this year.

Saturday will see the most activity on the roads over the bank holiday weekend with 36% of drivers planning a trip, the poll suggested.

That is compared with 31% on Good Friday, 30% on Easter Sunday and 28% on Easter Monday.

This is much lower than normal, indicating that many people remain cautious about socialising despite the relaxation of lockdown restrictions.

Network Rail is urging passengers to “minimise travel” as it carries out 600 engineering projects over the Easter weekend, leading to line closures.

Services on the West Coast Main Line will be disrupted by track renewals on several sections, including: between London Euston and Milton Keynes; Rugby and Birmingham; Crewe and Wigan; and Preston and Penrith.

Other routes affected by Easter engineering work include: the East Coast Main Line at London King’s Cross; between London Liverpool Street and Shenfield; and in the Kingston, Richmond and Twickenham areas of south-west London.