Petrol prices spiking again as Poles wheel off on holiday

The COVID-19 fuel price bonanza is coming to an end as 73% of holidaymakers decide on a driving holiday.

Although tanking up this holiday is cheaper than any time since 2016, the majority of Polish motorists who have decided on driving to their destination this year rather than flying or taking the train will find petrol prices creeping up on what they have been paying over the lockdown period.
A study by Avis found that 88 percent of holiday resorts are expecting more traffic this summer, which means that the average holiday maker will be filling up more often than during the darkest days of lockdown, when roads were empty.
Meanwhile at the petrol pumps, prices have started rising again to PLN 4.26 (EUR: 0.93). Motorists are now paying PLN 0.37 (EUR 0.083) more than at the cheapest period of the lockdown (EUR 0.0515), which means tanking up 50 litres is now EUR 4.15 more expensive.
However, compared to last year petrol is PLN 0.90 (EUR 0.20) cheaper than last year, which means a full tank of 50 l is now EUR 10.00 cheaper.
Although a barrel of oil is still 40 percent cheaper than last year, not all the benefits of cheaper crude are felt by the customer. Distribution and retail margins are only part of the story. Tax is the main culprit, as according to an article in bankier pl, a litre of petrol would cost PLN 1.85 (EUR 0.41), less than half the price if there were no tax, excises and environmental taxes to pay.

European comparisons

Compared to the rest of Europe, Polish petrol prices are not that much to complain about. Compared to Poland’s 94 cents, the prices elsewhere look a lot higher, according to data:

The salaries in these countries of course are higher. But a Pole battling his way to the UK by road in any normal year would have to pay his fuel on the way, so having a staycation has more than one benefit.