Taxi services

Blackpool taxi services are feeling the pinch as petrol prices hit record highs

Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the price of petrol has soared, topping £1.52 a liter for the first time.

Figures from data firm Experian Catalist show the average cost of a liter of petrol on UK forecourts was 152.20p on Wednesday March 2, down from 151.67p the day before.

The cost of diesel rose from 155.23p to a new high of 155.79p over the same period, while the cost of Brent crude hit a 10-year high of nearly US$120 a barrel.

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Gasoline prices hit record highs

With further price hikes on the horizon, some Blackpool taxi companies have expressed concern about what the future holds.

Andrew McClelland of Fairways Pegasus Travel established his airport taxi service in Blackpool 30 years ago. He said: “It hit us particularly hard because we’re just a small company with a few dozen cars.

“If things continue as they are, we will end up working for nothing.

“We take bookings well in advance, so it’s very difficult to raise prices once you’ve given someone a quote and confirmation.

“Before, prices went up and down. Now they go up and don’t go down.

“Work is very hard work now. I would caution anyone who comes into this business against that.

“I think probably within the next 10 years our business will cease to exist as people today will be driving around in their own cars. Airport taxi services are at their wits end.”

Anthony Severyn, principal operator at Whiteside Taxis, said: “With the rise in fuel prices it is costing our drivers more, but we don’t have much control over that as fares are controlled by the council.

“There is a fine line between not pricing too high and keeping our drivers happy and pretending nothing has happened.

“We don’t know how much the prices will go up. At the moment it is higher than it has been in recent years, probably the highest it has ever been, and there will be changes with that, but we’ll just have to watch it. That’s the only thing we can do.

He added: “Business is generally stable, as people have to get from A to B regardless of fuel costs. Business is picking up after the Covid-19 lockdown, and despite rising fuel prices, people still have to go to work, get to doctor’s appointments, go to the stores.

“It hasn’t affected us too much, but if it goes on too long and prices get out of hand, it won’t be good news for us. The bright side is that we still have a lot of green cars.”

Entrepreneurs are not the only ones to express their concerns.

A driver from St Annes said: “I have a vehicle, I use it all the time, and you have to consider – do I need a car? Should I use it as much as I have in the past? »

Another driver said: “It’s a big concern because making ends meet tends to cost a lot more.”

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