We received this e-mail from a ValueIreland.com reader yesterday:
I live in Cashel Co.Tipperary. Tesco opened a new filling station in Cashel and charge 96.9c per litre for petrol. 14 miles away in Clonmel, Tesco charge 91.9c per litre. To me this is very unfair to Tesco customers in Cashel.
This was my original response:
Unfortunately there’s not a whole lot that can be done in situations like this. We’ve received numerous e-mails about petrol prices in the past – many asking about a “petrol regulator”. There isn’t any such thing, so petrol stations can charge what they want.
I suppose what Tesco are hoping to cash in on is that people will assume (given much press coverage where Tesco is referenced as having cheap petrol) that whatever they’re charging in Cashel will be cheap. As you’ve found, this is obviously not the case.
Do you know what the petrol prices are in surrounding areas in Cashel – is Tesco about the same, or as is normally their ploy to be 1c cheaper than the average? I’m guessing the average price of petrol in Clonmel is about 92.9c on that basis as well.
As it turns out, after doing some quick checking on Pumps.ie, this was exactly the case with regards to the price of petrol in both Cashel and Clonmel.
Tesco are obviously depending on the fact that most people in Cashel probably wouldn’t even know the price of petrol in Clonmel for a start.
The question is though – if you were to shop around for petrol, would you drive the 14 miles from Cashel to Clonmel to save 5c per litre on a price of petrol?