Petrol price cycles

ACCC monitoring of fuel prices following cut in fuel excise

The ACCC acknowledges the Federal Budget announcement of a six-month reduction in fuel excise from 30 March 2022. We are monitoring fuel prices following this cut in fuel excise.

See Monitoring fuel prices following the excise cut for the latest information and updates on what the ACCC has found from monitoring activities.

Petrol prices move up and down in regular patterns or cycles. The cheapest and most expensive days to buy petrol can change from cycle to cycle. Use price cycles to help you decide when to buy petrol.

Petrol price cycles in capital cities

Petrol price buying tips for Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, and Perth.Sydney Melbourne Brisbane Adelaide Perth

A petrol price cycle is a movement in retail price from a low point (or trough) to a high point (or peak) to a subsequent low point. In these cycles, prices steadily go down for a period followed by a sharp increase.

Price cycles are the result of deliberate pricing policies of petrol retailers, and are not directly related to changes in wholesale costs.

The duration of petrol price cycles in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide varies from cycle to cycle, and has increased in recent years.

In 2019, price cycle durations in these capital cities ranged from a low of 13 days to a high of 38 days.

Disclaimer

Historical data can only give an indication of the cheapest and most expensive days to buy petrol in the future, so consumers should use this information as a general guide only.

The charts are updated daily from Monday to Friday at around midday, and show average daily prices for the last 45 days. Updates on Mondays include prices for the preceding Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Buying tips are usually updated around midday on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

The buying tips may not always seem apparent from the charts. This is because the charts show historical prices.

The charts show average daily regular unleaded petrol for all cities.

Petrol prices in Sydney

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • prices are decreasing but they are likely to decrease further
  • if possible, motorists should delay buying petrol until later.

The chart below shows daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Sydney over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Sydney over the past 45 days
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Sydney is shown below:

First day of cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle
Sat 20 Nov 21 15 Sun 05 Dec 21 31 46
Wed 05 Jan 22 14 Wed 19 Jan 22 19 33
Mon 07 Feb 22 13 Sun 20 Feb 22 12 25
Fri 04 Mar 22 11 Tue 15 Mar 22 35 46
Tue 19 Apr 22 12 Sun 01 May 22 10 22

Petrol prices in Melbourne

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • prices appear to be around the lowest point of the cycle
  • now is a good time for motorists to buy petrol.

The chart below shows daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Melbourne over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Melbourne over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Melbourne is shown below:

First day of cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle
Thu 11 Nov 21 13 Wed 24 Nov 21 20 33
Tue 14 Dec 21 28 Tue 11 Jan 22 16 44
Thu 27 Jan 22 11 Mon 07 Feb 22 15 26
Tue 22 Feb 22 21 Tue 15 Mar 22 35 56
Tue 19 Apr 22 7 Tue 26 Apr 22 11 18

Petrol prices in Brisbane

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • prices are decreasing but they are likely to decrease further
  • if possible, motorists should delay buying petrol until later.

The chart below shows daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Brisbane over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Brisbane over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Brisbane is shown below:

First day of cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle
Fri 12 Nov 21 12 Wed 24 Nov 21 38 50
Sat 01 Jan 22 15 Sun 16 Jan 22 18 33
Thu 03 Feb 22 12 Tue 15 Feb 22 16 28
Thu 03 Mar 22 12 Tue 15 Mar 22 35 47
Tue 19 Apr 22 10 Fri 29 Apr 22 11 21

Petrol prices in Adelaide

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • prices appear to be around the lowest point of the cycle
  • now is a good time for motorists to buy petrol.

The chart below shows daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Adelaide over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Adelaide over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Adelaide is shown below:

First day of the cycle (low price) No. of days to highest price in the cycle Date of highest price in the cycle Days to next cycle (next low price) Total days in cycle
Wed 12 Jan 22 8 Thu 20 Jan 22 11 19
Mon 31 Jan 22 5 Sat 05 Feb 22 11 16
Wed 16 Feb 22 10 Sat 26 Feb 22 9 19
Mon 07 Mar 22 5 Sat 12 Mar 22 31 36
Tue 12 Apr 22 11 Sat 23 Apr 22 10 21

Petrol prices in Perth

Buying tip (updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday):

  • prices appear to be around the lowest point of the cycle
  • now is a good time for motorists to buy petrol.

The chart below shows average daily regular unleaded petrol prices in Perth over the past 45 days.

Daily average regular unleaded petrol prices in Perth over the past 45 days.
Source: FUELtrac

Information on the past five price cycles in Perth is shown below:

First day of cycle (low price)

No. of days to highest price in the cycle

Date of highest price in the cycle

Days to next cycle (next low price)

Total days in cycle

Tue 22 Feb 22 1 Wed 23 Feb 22 13 14
Tue 08 Mar 22 2 Thu 10 Mar 22 12 14
Tue 22 Mar 22 1 Wed 23 Mar 22 13 14
Tue 05 Apr 22 1 Wed 06 Apr 22 13 14
Tue 19 Apr 22 1 Wed 20 Apr 22 13 14

If you have information that a fuel retailer is not competing fairly

Contact the ACCC

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