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Brits to reduce shopping visits if fuel price rise continues

Shoppers will think twice before making a journey by car.

Shoppers will think twice before making a journey by car.

More than half -- 53 per cent -- of British consumers said they would reduce shopping trips and save on the number of journeys they make if fuel cost continues to rise, according to a survey of 1,009 shoppers conducted by IGD between 4 and 31 January 2012.

The IGD ShopperVista, a monthly analysis of British grocery shopper sentiment, found that 32 per cent shoppers are doing more online food shopping to save on petrol costs, while 48 per cent are visiting grocery stores nearer to them.

Joanne Denney-Finch, CEO of IGD, said: "Most of us are feeling the squeeze from several directions: wages are barely increasing, if at all, while our bills continue to rise."

In the event if fuel cost continues to rise, 61 per cent shoppers in the north of England are more likely to shop less frequently versus 39 per cent of Londoners, the research found.

Denney-Finch said: "A major and regular cost for motorists is refuelling their cars and they are clearly concerned about how this will impact on their finances. If petrol prices continue to rise, more people might think twice before making a journey by car."

Fifty three per cent of shoppers under 35 years of age in the Midlands more likely to use shops nearer to them if fuel costs increase, versus 40 per cent of those above 65 years.

Denney-Finch continued:"But shoppers are not taking things lying down and instead are planning several ways to minimise the impact. Nearly half of them, especially younger ones and those in the Midlands, said they will use shops nearer to them to save on petrol costs. This intention to use more local shops could potentially provide a boost to convenience stores.

"Despite the worries about the cost of fuel, people tell us they will prioritise petrol and groceries, cutting back what they spend in other areas," added Denney-Finch.