Where’s the cheapest fuel in Northern Ireland? Here’s the full breakdown just as the oil price surge passes its peak

There are signs that the huge surge in the price of fuel in Northern Ireland may have hit its peak, and is now starting to reverse.

By Adam Kula
Friday, 1st April 2022, 3:39 pm
Updated Saturday, 2nd April 2022, 12:17 am

The cost of diesel, petrol, and home heating oil has been rising steadily for a year – with an especially sharp spike in the last couple of months.

Heating oil in particular had rocketed in price.

Here is what the hard data from the Consumer Council shows:

The cost of 500 litres of home heating oil now, and a year ago (data from Consumer Council)

The average price of 500 litres of home heating fuel in Northern Ireland stood at just over £192 in late March 2021.

By late February this year it had slowly risen to £320 – before suddenly leaping up to almost £663 by March 10.

However, in the weeks since it has begun settling back down again and now stands at just under £436.

When it comes to petrol, the average price per litre in late March 2021 was 121.6p.

Price per litre of diesel now and 12 months ago (data from the Consumer Council)

It gradually crept up and up until surging to a high of 165.1p on March 24, 2022.

But it has now dropped to 161.7p as of March 31.

It is much the same story when it comes to diesel.

In late March 2021, the average price per litre was 124.2p.

Price per litre of petrol now and 12 months ago (data from the Consumer Council)

This then spiralled upward to a high of 176.2p on March 24, 2022.

But as of March 31 it had dropped to 174.3p, indicating the price surge could be starting to correct itself.

The Consumer Council noted that the government had cut duty on motor fuel by five pence per litre, with effect from March 23.

Asked if this is the sole cause of the drop in fuel costs, it said it could not be sure, and other factors may be at work.

Price of 500 litres of home heating oil in Northern Ireland (data from the Consumer Council)

In terms of where the cheapest and most expensive fuel it to be found right now, the data shows:

Magherafelt has the highest average diesel price (184.6ppl) with the lowest being Newtownabbey (168.9ppl).

Ballycastle has the highest average petrol price (166.9ppl) and Newry the lowest (153.9ppl).

For home fuel, Newry Mourne and Down was the most expensive area (average price of 500 litres, £445.78) and Derry City and Strabane was the cheapest (£424.50).

A detailed breakdown – area by area, and with 2021 compared to 2022 – is set out in the charts appended to this story.

(All figures courtesy of the Consumer Council, 01/04/22)

Price of petrol in Northern Ireland over time (data from the Consumer Council)

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Price of diesel in Northern Ireland over time (data from the Consumer Council)