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Bottling it up

Life really isn’t easy for drivers in Britain at the moment, with campaigns for fairer fuel prices at fever pitch, so it is unacceptable when motorists are taken advantage of further by companies looking to make a quick buck.

The Fuelcard Company heard this week that motorway drivers are being charged up to 91 per cent more to buy drinks and snacks at service stations than they would on the high street!

A study by WhatCar? magazine suggested WH Smith, M&S and Burger King were among the worst offenders for charging customers more at their service station outlets compared to their conventional high street stores. For example, the price of a 750ml bottle of Buxton water at one of WH Smith’s service station outlet is £1.91, almost double the £1 charged in high street shops.

Steve Fowler, Editor of WhatCar? magazine, said: “With fuel prices at an all-time high, the 5.2 percent average motorway fuel mark-up is hard for consumers to fund, and a 91 percent mark-up on a bottle of water is utterly unacceptable. It is unforgivable for retailers to take advantage of motorists in such a brazen manner.”

We’ve all been there. You’re standing in the queue service station holding a bottle of water and thinking – should water REALLY be this expensive? But when you’re dehydrated from hours on the road, what choice do you have? On a long motorway journey, a bottle of water and a snack can be a lifeline for tired drivers. It’s an issue of sustenance, and unfortunately drivers do not have the luxury of ‘shopping around’ when they need to stop at the only service station within 20 miles.

The WhatCar? study follows a previous survey which saw two-thirds of drivers feel that they are ripped off every time they use a service station.

Motorists are not asking retailers to turn water into wine, only asking them to turn water back into the basic, cheap essential it should be.


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