Here's why fuel is cheaper at Boyne Island

CALTEX has admitted a small family business in Boyne Island forces them to sell their fuel up to 13 cents per litre cheaper there than in Gladstone.

"To remain competitive in the market" Caltex lowers its fuel prices at its Boyne Island station, but sets one higher price across all Caltex city stations, a spokesperson explained.

That "competitive market" is Colin Taylor and his family.

He is one of the only independent fuel stations in the region, so Mr Taylor doesn't get told what price to sell his fuel at.

"I'm contractually obliged to buy fuel from BP, but I set my own prices and I make them fair," he said.

The Taylor family has owned BP Boyne Island for more than 17 years.

"I don't understand why prices are so high in town when I can sell my fuel much cheaper and still make a profit," he said.

Mr Taylor said a lack of competition was the reason other retailers charged more.

FINE LINE: Pensioners Colin Bray and his wife Anne said even a difference of a few cents in price makes a huge difference to their quality of life.
FINE LINE: Pensioners Colin Bray and his wife Anne said even a difference of a few cents in price makes a huge difference to their quality of life. Kirsten Cunningham

Every cent counts for pensioner couple

FOR pensioners Colin and Anne Bray high fuel prices mean the difference of whether or not they can visit their family.

"The fuel stations might think they can charge whatever they want because people in Gladstone make big bucks, but what about people like us?" Colin Bray asked.

When prices are high the couple has to think carefully if they can afford to drive to Biloela to see their daughter.

"We use the car to buy groceries and do a few things around town, go shopping in Rockhampton twice a year, and visit our daughter every few months," he said.

"We have a budget for petrol but if we can't find cheap ULP, we can't leave Gladstone."

Mr and Mrs Bray budget $40-$50 per week for fuel. It is their second biggest expense after groceries.

"Once you budget to pay rates, keep the car running and include all of the other annual expenses, finding an extra $20 a week is hard to do on the pension," he said.

Mr Bray said he has to buy fuel at a Caltex-Woolworths station with a discount docket to stay within his budget.

"Whenever we drive out of town, we always fill up, but buying fuel in town is ridiculous."

"We have to go to the supermarket to get a voucher to get petrol for 150.9, which is more than we should be paying anyway.

"I don't understand how everywhere else in Queensland has cheaper fuel and we are paying through the teeth."

AT THE PUMP

BP Boyne Island: ULP 141.9, Diesel 143.9

Shell Miriam Vale: ULP 141.9, Diesel 144.9

Caltex Toolooa St: ULP 154.9, Diesel 150.9

Coles Express Shell Toolooa St: ULP 154.9, Diesel 150.9

Who owns what?

Puma Energy - 6x Shell, Choice, BP and Puma

Caltex - 4x under own brand

Woolworths - 2x Caltex-Woolworths



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