How do fuel prices changes affect my income?

Fuel prices can fluctuate a lot - and when the pump prices sitting at $1.50 and higher it can feel like fuel costs are eating into your car's income.

But when you do the sums, you might be surprised at how little these fuel price increases actually affect your earnings.

How much does fuel cost per kilometre?

When the fuel price rises from $1.30 to $1.60, the cost per kilometre for the average medium-sized car goes up by about 2 cents - from 12 cents/km to 14 cents/km. 

You get either 13, 25 or 33 cents for each kilometre that borrowers drive. You should choose a distance rate that is enough to fuel at an average rate over a year, and also cover tyres and servicing.

Read more about how to choose your car's distance rate.

Small or fuel-efficient cars will use less fuel, and large cars or vans will use more. To work out how much fuel your car takes, check out the fuel cost explainer.


How can I get more income to cover higher fuel costs?

Most trips with Car Next Door are under 100 kilometres per day, so the overall impact on your earnings of fuel price fluctuations is likely to be small. However, if you’re concerned about fuel prices, you could raise your car’s daily rate by a few dollars to cover higher costs.

For example, if you wanted to cover the extra cost of fuel for the average day trip of 100 km, you would need to earn an extra $2 per day ($0.02 x 100).

(Not 100% sure how you get paid for borrowers’ fuel use? Check out the interactive fuel cost explainer.)

Common questions

Why doesn’t Car Next Door increase the distance price to keep up with fuel price rises?

One of the most common reasons that borrowers give for not using Car Next Door more is that the distance cost makes it too expensive. If we raise the price per kilometre, it’s likely that there would be fewer bookings across the board.

Why can’t I set my own distance price?

We may introduce differential pricing for cars with different fuel consumption in the future. However, to make it easy for Borrowers to understand and predict the total cost of their trip, we have always had a consistent distance price across the fleet.

Won’t putting up my rates make my car less attractive?

It varies depending on how many similar cars are available near you, but in most cases, increasing your rates by just a few dollars won’t have a huge impact on how many bookings your car gets. Factors like location, good weekend availability, and keeping the car in good mechanical order and clean have a larger effect on bookings than rates.



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  • This has been an issue for a year.
    Increasing daily rates only reduces individual's income while CNDs income is unnafected overall.
    The argument that variable distance cost is confusing also applies to rental rates which is why the platform produces an estimated cost. Same could apply with variable km rates.
    Small cars could offer lower rates, large cars higher, no surprises for anyone.

  • Hi Jim, we're working towards introducing variable distance pricing but it will require some software development and user testing before we can launch it. Increasing the daily rates is an interim measure that may be useful for large car owners to get some additional income before this feature is built.

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