Traffic jams: our tips for saving fuel

Traffic jams are the bane of motorists' existence: they not only waste time but also lead to excessive fuel consumption, which is not without consequences for your wallet! Here are a few techniques for saving fuel in a traffic jam.
Traffic jams: our tips for saving fuel

Consumption in traffic jams

Data from a transport analytics firm that analysed congestion and transport trends in 2019 estimated that traffic jams on major UK roads cost the economy around £6.9 billion, which equates to an average of £894 per driver. An idling vehicle uses about 0.8 litres of fuel per hour, and with the acceleration and braking associated with traffic jams, its consumption increases by almost 90% on motorways and 175% in urban areas. As a result, traffic jams are costly and generate significant air pollution.

Our tips for using less fuel in traffic jams

You can try some of these effective techniques to keep your fuel gauge from dropping too quickly in traffic.

Shift into second gear quickly

For any journey of more than 5 metres, shifting into second gear at around 2,000 rpm will reduce your engine speed, resulting in less fuel use.

Gently press the accelerator

Take your time when restarting and avoid jerking. Stay far enough away from the vehicle in front so that you can still see its rear wheels: this will allow you to drive more smoothly.

Switch off the engine

If you stop for more than 1 minute, turn off the engine. When your engine is warm, it uses less fuel to restart than it does from a cold start. Use Start & Stop if your vehicle is equipped with it.

Limit the use of electronic equipment

Anything that strains the battery will increase fuel consumption, so it’s best to avoid turning on the GPS, using your air conditioning, charging a mobile, etc.

Maintain your vehicle

Filters, spark plugs, tyres: regularly checking your vehicle is also a good way to reduce fuel consumption.


With 4 people in a single vehicle instead of 4 vehicles, you will reduce fuel costs and the total number of cars on the road.

Now you know the main techniques to reduce your fuel consumption in a traffic jam, so all you have to do now is put them into practice!