The Automobile Association (AA) mentions, among others, the following tips to conserve petrol:
1. First-time car buyers should consider a small car with a fuel friendly engine especially at a time when inflation and interest rates are high
2. Excess baggage in the car should be removed as more weight in the car requires a higher amount of energy to run it
3. Train yourself to anticipate what is happening around you and in front of you. It is not advisable to drive at a high speed only to brake because the traffic light has gone red
4. Avoiding peak traffic hours and planning one's routes carefully can save fuel
5. Air conditioners use up a lot of energy and should be used when it is absolutely necessary.
1. I am pretty sure most of the South Africans reading this blog have a car. It is unlikely that I am going to trade in my 1.8 litre Opel Astra for something newer and smaller, simply because anything new or even nearly-new is likely to cost twice as much as the current value of my car. Swapping one’s car for a smaller model is unaffordable for most.
2. In the normal scheme of things, I have a gym tog bag and an assortment of papers in my boot. Yes, for a four-week period recently I was carting around a microwave, but that was not the norm. I doubt my sneakers weigh all that much, so I can’t see the benefit of removing the bag from my boot, thereby giving me an excuse not to go to gym, consequently leading to my obesity, sky-rocketing cholesterol and untimely death from a cardiac event.
3. “Train yourself to anticipate what is happening around you and in front of you”…HAHAHAHAHAH!!! Has the AA heard of our S.A. taxis? And, as a result of taxis, the frantic avoidance tactics we other drivers are forced to employ? I would gladly attend such a course teaching us non-taxi drivers how to anticipate what is happening around us if it gave me foolproof advice how to avoid taxis and save petrol concurrently.
4. Ok everyone, working hours are now 6am to 7pm everyday. Because we all do not have lives outside the office, we can avoid driving anywhere during peak times, and instead can use the extra time at the office to bond with our colleagues. Doesn’t that sound wonderful?
5. Thanks for the tip about the airconditioning, A.A. Whew, it’s TOUGH not to switch my aircon on during winter hey! Six degrees in the car just isn’t quite chilly enough for my liking, but I’ll see what I can do.
I never want to see another one of these bastard ‘helpful hints’ lists again! They make me want to buy a Hummer, load it up with fridges, couches and fat people, and speed over to A.A headquarters at 5pm via Louis Botha avenue (where taxis go to cause death).