Rising fuel prices hit highest level since pandemic began with petrol at £1.25 and diesel at £1.29 a litre – meaning a full tank now costs £10 more than it did in May

  • Full tank of fuel now costs £10 more than it did in May last year amid lockdown
  • The rise in prices will affect drivers venturing out onto the roads during Easter
  • Petrol has been sold at UK forecourts for £1.25 and diesel at £1.29 a litre 

Fuel prices are back to pre-pandemic levels as petrol has been sold at forecourts for £1.25 and diesel at £1.29 a litre.

A full tank of fuel now costs £10 more than it did in May last year when average prices sank to as low as £1.05 per litre of petrol and £1.12 per litre of diesel.

The rise could affect drivers venturing out on the roads over Easter as schools are closed for a two-week holiday and coronavirus lockdown restrictions are eased.

Pump prices have not been this high since February 2020 – before the pandemic flatlined the demand for fuel. 

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 full tank of fuel now costs £10 more than it did in May last year when average fuel prices sank to as low as £1.05 per litre of petrol and £1.12 per litre of diesel (file image)

‘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 in May 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 showed 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 per cent of drivers planning a trip, the poll suggested.

Average fuel prices sank in May when oil prices collapsed due to lower demand as global economies shut down because of the pandemic (file image)

That is compared with 31 per cent on Good Friday, 30 per cent on Easter Sunday and 28 per cent 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. 

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