As we’ve all been made quite aware, petrol prices aren’t looking so hot anymore (have they ever?). In just seven months, the price to fill up a tank of petrol has gone up by R200. It feels as if we’ll never see a return to normality. Maybe we won’t. But we can try and counter the prices as often as possible, using PetrolPrices.co.za – a new website that tracks petrol stations and their diesel prices.
PetrolPrices.co.za is a user-generated site that’s able to track and locate petrol stations nearby, and give the diesel prices for that station. This way, you know exactly where the best prices are. You might even end up saving R2 or more just by using the site.
Only Diesel, no Petrol
For the time being, PetrolPrices.co.za can only give us information concerning diesel. This is because the price of diesel isn’t regulated, and the price can fluctuate for a number of reasons. Petrol on the other hand is regulated and will be the same price across all stations. But the creator of PetrolPrices.co.za, Ilan Meltz, has expressed his wish to make the site usable for petrol prices too. This will only be possible if the government decides to eventually de-regulate petrol prices.
“It is a website that tracks the prices of fuel at stations and allows the user to see which nearby fuel stations are the cheapest based on their location. Each filling station added to the website will be displayed as a marker on the map. Each marker displays the logo of the fuel company and the diesel price at that petrol station without having to click on it. As a result, it is possible to locate nearby options quickly. In addition, the user can see which brands of fuel stations are nearby if they prefer a particular brand,” said Meltz.
There’s even a handy ‘Go Here’ button thrown in, so you can get directions to your desired station. Clicking Go Here will automatically open Google Maps and set directions for you.
This isn’t karma
Since prices are so quick to change when it comes to diesel, the site itself relies wholly on users to keep the information accurate. If there’s a petrol station not listed, a user can add it then and there. The same goes for incorrect prices – if users notice a discrepancy, they can make the correct changes. Obviously, users don’t have complete control – any change needs to be approved by another user.
The site is pretty bare at this point. But if more people start to use it regularly, it will grow. It’s early days, but a site like this could prove useful in South Africa.
As the site grows, users can start earning FuelBounty – for contributing to correct prices and stations. Essentially, the amount of FuelBounty a user has shows just how much they’ve contributed to the site. The more you get, the more your reputation grows. But they aren’t completely useless. Occasionally, there will be competitions in which users with the most FuelBounty can compete. We don’t know when those competitions are or if they’ll even be worth entering, but hey, a map of the cheapest diesel shouldn’t be scoffed at.
Then eventually, once you’ve levelled up enough, users with enough FuelBounty will be able to make changes without another user needing to approve the request.
For now, PetrolPrices.co.za is just a website, but that may not be the case for long. The creator says there’s an Android app in the works, with an iOS version to follow.