During his budget speech in February, Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene announced that the fuel levy would increase by 30.5 cents and the Road Accident Fund levy would be raised by 50 cents in April.

But economist Francois Stofberg said motorists are likely to be hit with a big petrol price hike on top of the levies.

“We are expecting at least a 90 cents increase per litre, above the 81 cents increase the finance minister announced for the first week of April. The expected increase is largely due to the international price of brent crude oil and the rand/dollar exchange. The crude oil price helped a bit because it decreased from $58 a barrel to about $54 a barrel but there was quite a substantial depreciation in the value of the rand to the US dollar, which even went as low as R12.50 against the dollar at one point. We’re looking at total increase of around R1.90 and even as high as R2,” he told NOW.

The energy department is expected to announce the fuel adjustments next week. They would come into effect on the first Wednesday of April.

There are a number of ways motorists can save their fuel; the Automobile Association’s Marius Luyt gave NOW five of his best tips.

1. Tyre pressure: The flatter the tyre the more the resistance on the road. Ensure each tyre has the correct pressure. Under-inflated tyres cause your engine to work harder and therefore use more fuel.

2. Vehicle maintenance: It is important to keep your car well maintained. Your car will not perform at its best if you have mechanical problems like blocked filters. Your engine won’t function 100% and will use up more fuel.

3. Do not accelerate unnecessarily: Drive at a constant speed because the acceleration will take up a lot of fuel.

4. Stop/Start: When you drive you can anticipate when the robot is going to change. Don’t speed from one robot to another. Lift off the accelerator earlier instead of speeding up to beat a robot and gently slow down.

5. Change gears: When driving up a steep hill, change to a lower gear and keep your engine speed higher.

Article credit: http://now.co.za/post/five-fuel-saving-tips-motorists/