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Service Station Rip Offs

Service Station Rip Off - The Survey

We all know as consumers that shopping in certain shops or areas of the country will mean that the price of an item could cost us more, however is it fair that when we are on a motorway, and we stop for a break we should be paying through the nose for food and drink?

Admiral Insurance carried out a secret shopper survey to see just how much more we are expected to pay at service stations with incredible results.

The task

All the mystery shoppers were given the same list of items to purchase, the basket items were as follows-

  • 1 bottle of water
  • 1 bottle of coke
  • 1 ham sandwich
  • 1 sausage roll
  • 1 bag of crisps
  • 1 cadburys chocolate bar
  • 1 bag of wine gums

The mystery shoppers were also asked to monitor the prices of fuel, the cost of a latte, a cheeseburger and a bacon sandwich.

The mystery shoppers visited a total of 21 service stations located around the UK to get a good sense of just how much motorists are being held to ransom over their food, drink and fuel.

service station rip offs on food and drink

So where are the biggest service station rip offs?

You may expect that service stations closest to London would be the priciest, however surprisingly London came in as the 7th most expensive at £13.86 for the shopping basket The most expensive basket came in at £15.78 this was in the south west, where as the cheapest was in the north west coming in at £12.58. If you compare these totals to a super market the same shopping basket will cost you around £6.11, you are paying double the price because you are on the motorway! Interestingly many of the individual items such as wine gums, sausage roll, and coke came in cheaper when purchasing in Scotland.

Up to 13% more on fuel another service station rip off

Fuel prices at Service stations

The mystery shoppers reported back and the results showed that fuel prices at service stations were costing motorists up to 13% than the average price.
This is were service stations can get away with ripping you off as they have the monopoly and of course you have no where else to go when that fuel light comes on.

How to avoid service station rip offs

If you are planning a long journey here are our tips on saving money- Make sure you tank up before you hit any of the motorways. Visit your local supermarket for snacks and drinks before you set off. Make up a picnic, and rather than stop at a service station visit an interesting sight on the way. You can stop, eat and drink in a nice environment feeling fully rested before you continue on your journey.

Planning a head can save you money and any nasty pricing shocks on your sausage roll or latte.

If you are a motorist and like to save money, take a look at our car leasing prices for those with a bad credit rating.