MSE News: The 91% motorway service station mark-up

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Motoring
60 replies 5.6K views
1356

Replies

  • liam8282liam8282 Forumite
    2.9K Posts
    ✭✭✭✭
    Wonder why this is even news.

    No real news today so MSE just grabbed the first thing they heard on Daybreak and decided to publish it on their website.

    I know Martin Lewis is on Daybreak a lot nowadays, but does he give them these stories or does he get them from Daybreak?

    Just lazy news editing IMO, if they haven't even bothered to research the article properly and give the full facts and figures.

    :D
  • liam8282 wrote: »
    No real news today so MSE just grabbed the first thing they heard on Daybreak and decided to publish it on their website.

    I know Martin Lewis is on Daybreak a lot nowadays, but does he give them these stories or does he get them from Daybreak?

    Just lazy news editing IMO, if they haven't even bothered to research the article properly and give the full facts and figures.

    :D


    Too busy on Countdown to care i think.;)
    "If you no longer go for a gap, you are no longer a racing driver" - Ayrton Senna
  • according to that percentage table, it would be cheaper for me to fill up with diesel on the motorway
  • Ashley3283 wrote: »
    The article says that WH Smith was charging 91% more than its high street stores.
    Example:
    WH Smith buys a 750ml bottle of water for £0.50 then adds 75% markup = £0.88p retail price.
    WH Smith (Motorway) sells that same bottle of water for £1.67 (a 91% markup on the high street price which already includes their markup).

    TBH I am not concerned with paying an extra 5% for my fuel at these places as they are convenient. My concern is that from my £1.30 for a litre of fuel £0.85 (65%) is going to the government in the form of duty/VAT. They are the people that are crippling this countries motorists.
    I was in WHSmith in town yesterday. Popped in for a can of coke. Price £1.05 :eek:
    Went into poundland and got three cans for £1 instead:D
    AKA; Mad, MM, MM5, Madicles :cool: ©
    Shin: Device for finding furniture in the dark :p©
    Elite 11+ fundraising total for Make-a-Wish £682 :j:A
  • edited 10 February 2011 at 2:12PM
    pmm1981pmm1981 Forumite
    112 Posts
    edited 10 February 2011 at 2:12PM
    Motorway rip-off


    Product
    Unleaded per litre
    Diesel per litre
    Coca-Cola 500ml
    Buxton water 750ml
    Vittel water 750ml
    M&S Still Scottish water
    Double espresso
    BK Dble Cheeseburger meal
    Walkers Crisps 34g
    M&S Large sausage roll
    M&S Egg and bacon sandwich
    Price
    National average 123.8p
    National average 128.3p
    WH Smith High St £1.43
    WH Smith High St £1.00
    WH Smith High St £1.45
    M&S High St 80p
    WH Smith High St £1.70
    BK High St £5.49
    WH Smith High St 69p
    M&S High St £1.00
    M&S High St £2.50
    M/way prices
    Motorway average 130.2p
    Motorway average 132.7p
    WH Smith £1.69
    WH Smith £1.91
    WH Smith £1.98
    M&S £1.00
    Average motorway £1.96
    BK £6.15
    WH Smith 79p
    M&S £1.15
    M&S £2.90

    M/way mark-up
    5.2%
    3.4%
    18.2%
    91%
    37%
    25%
    15.3%
    12%
    14.5%
    15%
    16%

    Where do they get these figures from, article is dated today so should be upto date
    when was national average for unleaded 123.9, i can't get it for under 125.9 in Yorkshire which is usually cheaper.
    £1.43 for a bottle of coke on the high street, only a mug would pay that, boots are doing 2 for £1.40 (on train stations too), is it just a case of going round and putting the worst case figures on??
  • Paul_HerringPaul_Herring Forumite
    7.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    ✭✭✭✭
    pmm1981 wrote: »
    is it just a case of going round and putting the worst case figures on??

    Of course it is.

    It wouldn't make an attention grabbing headline if it was "The 1% motorway service station mark-up" instead, would it?
    Conjugating the verb 'to be":
    -o I am humble -o You are attention seeking -o She is Nadine Dorries
  • MiddyMiddy
    5.4K Posts
    ✭✭✭✭
    About 80-85% of motorway junctions, there is a supermarket and/or retail park within 3 miles of leaving the motorway. Dad travels a lot for his work and refuels both the car and himself by driving a few miles off a motorway.

    I only use motorway service stations for the loo and to eat my own food in the car.
  • MiddyMiddy
    5.4K Posts
    ✭✭✭✭
    bap98189 wrote: »
    It's the same at railway stations, theatres, cinemas etc. We are paying more for the convenience in the same way supermarkets charge more at their city centre shops (Tesco Express etc.) than the big out of town ones. They do presumably have some increased costs. I would imagine the rent on a shop in a station or motorway service station is considerably more than that of an out of town shop.

    Whenever I need to catch a train from Leicester or Brum New Street, I nip into the Mr T Express a few yards from the station (in case of BNS up the escalator to the Pallasades)to buy drinks etc for the journey.:money::D
  • This is a fairly common press release that organisations put out whenever they feel like having a pop at motorway service stations. As news stories go, it certainly falls into the same category as the toilet habits of bears and the religious affiliation of the Pope. :)

    It's certainly true that prices are higher at service stations, but that's more to do with the way they're regulated than with the operators. MSAs have to be open 24 hours a day, every day of the year, so they need to be staffed round the clock as well even though they don't sell much in the middle of the night. They also have to provide free parking and facilities such as toilets, which also have to be available round the clock. And they have to pay the full cost of constructing and maintaining the facilities, even the ones which don't earn money. So when the operators say that their prices are higher because their costs are higher, they do have a point.

    From the comments on motorwayservices.info, I think that most regular MSA users are aware that prices will be higher, and realise that they're paying for convenience as much as anything. What really annoys them isn't the prices so much as the quality - things like cleanliness (especially the toilets), the quality of the food and the attitude of the staff are the most common complaints. The other big cause of complaints is parking - it's free for two hours, but all MSAs charge for time longer than that and impose swingeing penalty charges on anyone who overstays without paying. But they tend not to make it easy to pay, and the minimum paid period is 24 hours - so you have to pay for a whole day's parking even if you're going to be there for just 30 minutes longer than your free period. And there are a lot of complaints about the unreliability of the cameras which monitor the parking - a lot of people find that if they visit the same site twice in one day (eg, once on the way to their destination, and again on the way back) then the system assumes they've been there all day and sends them an automated penalty charge notice.

    So, if you want a summary response to the press release, I'd say yes, what it says is true, but it's aiming at the wrong target. The high prices are the fault of the way that the government regulates MSAs, not the choice of the operators, and in any case they're not what users complain about the most. Where the operators do fall down is in the quality of the service they provide, which can be patchy and unpredictable even on sites which generally get a good rating, as well as their customer-unfriendly policies on parking.

    If you've got nothing better to do later this afternoon, then you can hear me say much the same as this on 5Live at around 16:20 :)

    Mark
  • KierNet wrote: »
    I think because they are on the motorway, they can charge more, bit of a pain to get into work for the staff, so maybe they get paid more? And of course the supply/demand...if people buy fuel/drinks at that price, they'll continue to sell at that price.

    Exactly. This is a non-issue. If people didn't pay it then they'd have to drop the prices.
    If I've helped you please show your appreciation by using the "Thanks" button
    > :T
This discussion has been closed.
Latest MSE News and Guides

Tesco Clubcard rule tweaks

Be careful when converting points to Cineworld

MSE News

£148 of Ciaté nail polish for £35

Via its Advent calendar (norm £59 delivered)

MSE Deals