Full tanks and top-ups - Aussies at the bowser

21 February, 2012

Holden drivers are more than twice as likely as Lexus drivers to do small top-ups rather than a full fill-up of their petrol tanks, according to analysis by NAB and data analytics firm Quantium.

Drivers in Victoria are spending 7 per cent more on fuel than drivers from NSW, but Queenslanders spend more on petrol than any drivers in any other state.

The data also reveals that the average Australian spends more on filling up their tanks with petrol than on eating out.

The per-driver expenditure at petrol stations is highest on Thursdays, followed by Wednesdays and Mondays. Peak petrol station days are split between Thursday and Friday in Victoria and NSW. The peak day in Queensland is Friday, in WA it is Wednesday and in South Australia it is Thursday. The least popular day to go to the petrol station in all states is Sunday.

On average, Australians spent $1,261 each on fuel last year. That’s over $300 more than the average per-capita spend on eating and drinking out at restaurants and bars. It’s more than double what the Australians spend on average going to movies, concerts or sports events; and almost three times the average spend on hair and beauty.

Included in the top suburbs for petrol expenditure in Australia are: Mickleham (Victoria), Dunn’s Creek (NSW), Braddon (ACT), Humpty Doo (Northern Territory), Tumby Bay (South Australia), Relbia (Tasmania), Mount Mellum (Queensland) and Carmel-Bal (Western Australia).

By make of car nationally, the top 10 spenders per petrol station visit are: Volvo ($81); Porsche ($73); Lexus ($70); Land Rover ($68); BMW ($68); Mercedes ($62); Toyota ($61); Nissan ($56); Chrysler ($56); Subaru ($55). The average spend per visit to the service station is $48.

Toyota drivers spend an average of $61 per visit to the service station, while Ford and Holden drivers spend an average of $53 per visit.

Tasmania is Australia’s petrol top-up state, with around double the rate of top-ups (more than one in 10 visits) of the rest of Australia. At the other end of the scale, Northern Territory drivers are the most likely to fill up full tanks, rather than small top-ups.

The data also showed that, on average, men spend more at petrol stations than women. Women do small top-ups 25% more often than men. Age makes a significant difference to petrol station spend, with Baby Boomers spending almost double what 18-to-21-year-olds spend ($30 compared to $56).

Consumers tend to buy their petrol close to home, with one third of drivers preferring the service station in the same post code as their house. More than one third of drivers buy their petrol between 9am and 2pm.

This analysis of NAB customers was undertaken by data analytics firm Quantium. Quantium analysed anonymous NAB customer credit card and EFTPOS transactions from the nation’s service stations.

Media contact

Fiona Macrae
0412 693 182