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Jul 6, 2022

Curtailing the Rising Cost of Fuel

Last night we told you about the increase in the price of premium gasoline which now stands at over seventeen dollars per gallon. Today, we took to the streets of the Old Capital to ask motorists about their bloated monthly fuel budgets and the steps they are taking to curtail the additional expenses. We also explored the idea of switching to electric modes of transportation in place of fuel-powered vehicles. The necessary physical and legislative infrastructures are not yet in place to encourage a mass migration from to fuel to electric vehicles. But, as we found out, Belizeans are already exploring their options for electric powered transportation. News Five’s Paul Lopez reports.


Paul Lopez, Reporting

Whether it is an electric vehicle, an electric bike, public transportation, or simply walking, it may be time to begin considering your options for more economic modes of transportation. Since the beginning of the year, the cost per gallon of regular gasoline has increased by over two dollars, while the price on a gallon of diesel has increased by approximately three dollars. A gallon of premium gasoline has seen an almost seven-dollar increase in the first half of 2022.And, the motorists we spoke with today in Belize City have certainly seen their monthly fuel budgets balloon.


Earl Pitts

Earl Pitts, Motorist

“Normally I does, because the car dah wah, the engine the run good so I grateful for that, but I does put in like two gallon weh does give me, before dah mih like sixteen dollars, ih use to be like twelve dollars and I would  put in twenty five fih the day. Now, I have to put in twenty five dah morning, then dah night I put in a next twenty five. Ih wah carry me half day the next day. So I the use like fifty dollars between a day, or two days.”


Paul Lopez

“How have you been trying to curtail the cost of fuel, maybe you are cutting into other parts of your budget?”


Hermelinda Hilton

Hermelinda Hilton, Motorist

“I have to spend less in some areas to make sure I have gas to go to work. Another thing I have been doing is buy gas early. So I buy gas early in the morning when the gas is cool. It lets the real gas go in without any air. You get the gas when it is fresh and cool. If you want to buy real gas buy it early in the morning and tell the pump guy to put it in slow. What I do with my friends is that, oh that is illegal I can’t say it. They call me instead of the taxi guy.”


Paul Lopez

“You mean car pooling?”


Hermelinda Hilton

“Yeah, car pooling, that is legal right?”



Craig, Motorist

“I have to stop yah every minute and buy a lee ten dollars worth of gas, because as you get over the bridge the thing done, especially the unleaded. It is just fumes. So, I don’t understand what it going on, but we know what is going on in the world.”


Paul Lopez

“What are you trying to do to cut back cost?”



“What am I trying to do? What can I do? I have to ride my vehicle everyday and I have to run my errands, I have a business.”


We also put these questions to our News Five Live Facebook followers. The responses were varied. One user said, she is no longer going out on pleasure rides, and she now walks to the supermarket.  Another follower responded by saying, he does not keep track of his monthly fuel budget, in order to keep his sanity. He has also cut back on joy rides.  A third follower noted that she has relocated closer to work, a decision that she says has saved her hundreds of dollars on a weekly basis. Javier Canul traded in his pickup truck for an electric bicycle, as his primary mode of transportation within Belize City.


Javier Canul

Javier Canul, Electric Bike Owner

“I want to say it is one of the best investments I have ever done. I have this bike for about a month. Since then, ah stop ketch bus, taxi, everything, unless I have to move in bulk. Basically it has a button you can push and it gives you power. That power, if you just want to cruise, you can just move like a motorcycle. Most times I try to use it like a bicycle, due to the extent a mih lee belly fih stay in shape. But, it is actually in time in a hurry I switch on the button and it works.”


Canul invested eighteen hundred dollars to purchase the bicycle online and had it shipped to Belize. He says it can cost less if it is brought into the country by a relative or friend traveling from the U.S.


Javier Canul, Electric Bike Owner

“I am not going to lie to you, when I first got it about one week after, my mom lives in Sand Hill just after Boom cutoff. I said, I want to try to see how far it can go. I charged it and it took me all the way to Sandhill, none stop, just moving like a motor cycle and it got me there within an hour, from here to there. When I got there I recharged and came back home to Belize.”


Belize Electricity Limited has been making strides in increasing the availability of its EV charging stations, with plans to construct these stations in municipalities across the country. But, with only ten electric vehicles currently in country, according to reports, a drastic switch from fuel to electric powered vehicles may be long in coming. In the meantime, Belizeans continue to find ways to cut costs.


Earl Pitts

“If I have three four things to do, I try do them pan one level, so that I nuh have to the guh over there and then guh deh. The gas mih suh good to me that I could ah mih guh dah shop cross the street with my car, now I have to walk, which is good. But, something has to be done with this gas.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Paul Lopez

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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