Applying maths to solve problems in the real world…

Comparing Cost Of Fuel

Difficulty: Rating:

GCSE Marks:

GCSE Text: Whilst on a long car journey, you take a break at the motorway services. As you need 40 litres of diesel to complete your journey, you compare the price of diesel. At the services, the cost is £1.30 per litre of diesel, whereas at the local supermarket, it is only £1.12 per litre.

How much more would it cost you to refuel the car at the motorway services, than if you refuel it at the local supermarket?

Suggestions:
This is a great video to start lessons or discussions on shopping decisions or saving money on purchases. Students often find it difficult to believe that there is considerable money to be saved by spending wisely, and many healthy discussions often follow this video. Normally students solve this in around 3-4 minutes, although a variety of methods are often employed. Some students may work out the two different costs for 40 litres, although as the question is about the difference, other students may just focus on the difference per litre. Either way is obviously suitable.

Extension Ideas: Teachers could extend the learning by considering:

What is the percentage saving by refuelling at the supermarket instead of the motorway services?

On average, diesel motorists buy 100 litres of fuel per month. Estimate the cost of fuel per year, if a driver fills their car at the local supermarket.