Caltex Pulling out of AA Membership Discounts

From today's email: As of 1 August, 2019, Caltex petrol stations will no longer be part of the AA Membership discounts scheme. Caltex is switching over to the Pumped rewards scheme, and the AA will be announcing new fuel partners (joining the continuing BP) by the end of July.

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    That's not unexpected, now that Z owns Caltex. I wonder how long will they keep the Caltex brand.


      Ay, i just learnt that Caltex purchased gull in 2016, i didnt think the commerce comm would allow this to happen since there are only 3 now, Mobil, BP and Z


        The Commerce Commission has already approved Z buying Caltex, so they can change the branding if they want. I wouldn't be surprised if they do this eventually as Z is the stronger brand.

        Its a completely different company that owns Gull - Caltex Australia owns Gull.


    I hope they don't start overcharging as much as Z do, although most of the profits do go into the NZ super fund…


    The new AA Membership fuel partner is G.A.S. A bit disappointing since there aren't anywhere as many G.A.S. stations around, but then it probably is the next biggest brand since Mobil already has their own scheme.

    Starting 1 August, for a standard discount (or accumulated discount) you can use your

    • AA card (membership or Smart Fuel) at both BP and G.A.S.
    • Fly Buys card or AirPoints card, or their smartphone apps, at Caltex and Z.
    • Mobil Smiles card at Mobil.

    They will all also still have their bigger discount days, both for everyone and specific targeted members.


      Interesting; GAS has lots of self service stations in the South Island; it would be nice if it applied to those as well! I suspect not.


    Aaannddd…. Caltex has just announced they will be using Pumped Days promos and Flybuys from August, unsurprisingly. You get 6cpl off everyday with no minimum spend, but if you want to stack them, you have to spend at least $40 just like before.


    Has anyone looked at whether using flybuys or airpoints accumulation is better value with the Caltex change to pumped?


      It's all a big con trick. Mathematically accumulating the standard petrol station discount is pointless. You don't save anything more than simply using it every time.

      If you fill up your car three times (for example $50 each time and simplifying the saving to an exaggerated 10% rather than 6c per litre), then the mathematics is either:
      ($50 - $5 discount) + ($50 - $5 discount) + ($50 - $5 discount) = $45 + $45 + $45 = $135
      $50 + $50 + ($50 - 3 x $5 discount) = $50 + $50 + $35 = $135

      No difference at all.

      If you accumulate the discount on the first fill-up and then use that on a double fill-up next time (so only two discounts), it works out worse for you:
      $50 + ($100 - $10 discount) = $50 + $90 = $140

      The only real way to get better savings is to use the additional discounts from supermarket receipts, spending at AA partners, etc.

      • +3 votes

        I believe the benefit is when getting the discount you fill up with the minimum volume of petrol (eg $40 to get a 10c/pl discount). If you accumulate these discounts and then go and do a complete fill (ie maximum amount of fuel, using all the discounts accumulated), then you do come out of it when the discount maximised which would be different to if you just used it up each time.
        I can't be arsed tbh, and walk away from these bs discounts and fill up when/where I need to fill up.

        • -2 votes

          Nope. As above, mathematically it simply doesn't work - you don't save any extra, and in fact the "small then large" fill ups can actually save you less (which is probably exactly what the petrol companies actually want).

          In fact, instead of filling up your car on the standard 6c days or public 10c days, you're actually better off only topping up with the minimum of $40 multiple times. If you want to fill up which usually costs you $120 (for example), you're better off doing it in three transactions of $40:
          one fill up
          $120 - $5 discount = $115
          three top ups
          ($40 - $5 discount) + ($40 - $5 discount) + ($40 - $5 discount) = $35 + $35 + $35 = $105
          Of course that does mean you'll have to keep stopping and starting the pump (and going backwards and forwards to the counter if you don't use "pay at the pump" / app options).

          On the days with a targeted extra discount days, it's usually only for one fill, although sometimes it can be "every time" within a timeframe - read the emails carefully.

          • +4 votes

            @DisabledUser6364: I think you've missed the point. Say petrol is $2 a litre, so 20L of fuel is $40. 6c off would save you $1.20.
            Do that ten times and you've saved $12.
            Now forgo those savings, stack the discount. Fill 9 times and you have 54c saving stacked. On fill 10, fill up your car, lets say 50L for $100. You've just saved $27.

            • +2 votes

              @Jizah: Precisely. Here is a link and video explaining the savings by stacking

              • -1 vote

                @The Hound: That's different thing. That's accumulating the discount from a variety of retailers. So yes, shopping at Countdown, Placemakers, etc. will give obviously you a bigger overall discount.

                Accumulating the discount ONLY at the petrol station doesn't really work. The mathematics prove above it.


              @Jizah: Yes, if you fill up by a multiple small amounts and then one large amount, it may work out slightly better. That final fill up being larger distorts things, so in reality your example is the equivalent of 11.5 x 20L fill ups, i.e.
              (9 x 20L @ $2) + (1 x 50L @ $1.46) = $360 + $73 = $433
              11.5 x 20L @ $1.94 = $446.20

              You've really only saved $13.20, not $27.

              But the average driver doesn't do that - they just always buy $40 or whatever every week, so accumulating is completely pointless.

              Then there's the problem that the discounts (the AA / Countdown ones anyway) expire at the end of the following month, so you'd have to fill up enough times within the two months. Plus by the time you include the constantly changing (pretty much always rising) petrol prices, the savings aren't really worth the effort.

              Realistically it's all just the usual marketing con trick and the petrol companies should simply lower the prices for everyone all the time. The petrol companies certainly aren't going to be doing anything that loses them money - the few people who make a saving are basically subsidised by the extra customers conned into going to that petrol brand.


                @DisabledUser6364: You've saved $13.20 more than the the 6c at a time discount method. The total saving is $25ish

                The final fill up being large is the point of the whole exercise.


                  @Jizah: No, the total saving is $13.20. You can't just ignore that extra 30L of petrol you're buying which would otherwise had to be bought at the 6c discount (or no discount for accumulating).

                  That's the point. It's extremely easy to think you're making a saving (or bigger saving) than you really are when you calculate it out properly.

                  • +1 vote

                    @DisabledUser6364: You are making a bigger saving if you accumulate! That's why it's extremely easy to think it.
                    And a lot of the time the discount is over 6 cents. And you can accumulate for nearly 2 months. And you may well do more $40 transactions in that time than the 9/10 in our example. The savings do add up. It's just about whether you can be bothered.

                    • -3 votes

                      @Jizah: I've already posted the mathematics that prove it, but you continue to believe whatever nonsense you want to. :-\


                    @DisabledUser6364: Oh darn they took down that video which explained things better. Person A does 20L fills each week for 4 weeks, then does a massive fill of 50L in the fifth week.
                    Scenario 1 is where you use the 6c off each week. So 4x20L + 1x50L = 130L x 6c = $7.80 savings
                    Scenario 2 is where you chose to accumulate instead, so after 5 five weeks of fuel stacking, you get 5 x 6c = 30c loaded on your AAsmartfuel card. Use that in the final fifth week of that massive fill (50l x 30c) and you get $15. That is more than the $7.80 savings from scenario 1 above.


                      @The Hound: Yes, as above. Depending on various factors you can save a little bit … IF you work it carefully AND prices don't rise, AND they don't expire, AND you remember wether "today" is a small or big fill up day, AND …, but it depends on so many factors that it's not really worth the hassle for the average driver, and isn't worth it at all for the majority who only ever buy $40 every time.

                      You would also have to add in the factor that because they making a "massive fill" on the fifth or tenth week, they won't need to buy petrol for the next week or two at all, which again affects any annual savings you're making.

                      As I said, it would be much better for everyone if they simply got rid of these silly schemes, extra discount days, etc. and simply lowered the everyday price.


        Another option is gaining points via some other rewards scheme while also getting the petrol discount. For example, using your Fly Buys card, Airports card, ASB True Rewards credit card, etc. That way you're getting a "double dip" on the bonuses.


        A 5% discount of 50$ is 2.5$.

        Anyway, besides the point of my question. Flybuys pumped allows the discounts PLUS either flybuys or airpoints.

        I was wondering whether anyone knew which of the flybuys or airpoints was more worthwhile (in a hypothetical world where you buy into their gimmick/non-gimmick).


          Fly Buys is collected / spendable in more retailers than Airports, so unless perhaps you do a lot of traveling, Fly Buys is most likely the better option … but I haven't compared the $spent for Points-collected to rewards-costs.

          You can use Fly Buys points at the retail stores to pay or part-pay for products, which is often cheaper than ordering a reward product from Fly Buys themselves, especially if the retailer is having a sale.

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