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AA assesses impacts of 8p fuel duty rise

AA assesses impacts of 8p fuel duty rise

A survey conducted by the AA questioned over 16,000 of their members to reveal the likely effects that the proposed fuel duty rise will have on motoring habits.

The Government have planned two fuel duty rises for next year, with VAT adding 8p to petrol and diesel pump prices – the survey suggests that this will force many households to abandon or delay spending on household goods, home improvements and luxury items.

The hardest hit will be young drivers aged 18 to 24, with 28% cutting back on groceries and 36% who will ditch plans to buy furniture, home entertainment and other household goods in the near future.

Overall, only 20% of AA members would be unaffected by the duty increases – 24% among top managers and professionals but falling to 15% among skilled and unskilled manual and service workers.

Almost two-thirds of the survey panel say they will cut back on car use if the fuel duty rises go ahead next year, rising to 68%-69% among unskilled workers and pensioners. More significantly, 6% of AA members said they would have to sell or take a car off the road, rising to 8% among unskilled workers, pensioners and drivers in Northern Ireland.

One in five of the UK sample said they would have to downsize a car, while 6% will forgo their cars and switch to two wheels, particularly among unskilled workers (10%).

The survey panel was asked: "With a planned duty increase in January and a further increase likely after the March 2012 budget, if petrol prices reached 145p a litre and 150p for diesel, which of the following would apply to you?"
* Sell or take off the road – 6%
* Downsize one or more cars – 10%
* Switch to a motorcycle, scooter or cycle – 6%
* Cut back on car use – 63%
* Cut back on normal grocery shopping – 18%
* Abandon or delay purchase of furniture, luxury items or home improvements – 23%
* Change job to reduce mileage – 4%
* Abandon job because travel costs are unaffordable – 3%
* Use public transport more – 22%
* Car share – 6%
* None of the above – 20%

The survey highlights that, if fuel duty increases go ahead next year, it will hit those who can least afford it," says Edmund King, the AA's president.

"The discriminatory nature of fuel duty comes over loud and clear in this new AA/Populus survey: younger households more likely to have to cut back on food shopping, more unskilled workers cutting back on car use or being forced out of their cars, and one in four higher-income drivers not bothered by the duty rises compared to one in seven lower-income drivers."

The AA


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