how do they handle the high prices at the pump?

While we are called to vote in the parliamentary elections this Sunday – these are the 1st round of elections – purchasing power is one of the issues that will come to the table for the future majority of the next deputies. With especially the delicate question of prices at the pump. At the beginning of the week, petrol as diesel, the liter flirting even exceeds 2 euros on average. So what do you do when you have no choice but to use the car for work? What do we expect from the future majority? Are we ready to switch cars to an electric one? We asked these questions to three residents of the Loire-Atlantique, three professionals for whom it is impossible to work without a car, three very different profiles.

Sophie, hairdresser at home, in the Divatte-sur-Loire area

Sophie has been a hairdresser at home in Divatte-sur-Loire and the surrounding area for 13 years: Loroux-Botterau, Saint-Julien-de-Concelles, Mauves-sur-Loire and others. Her personal car, a Renault Scénic, she also uses for work to go to her customers. Despite the temporary discount of 18 cents including tax per. liters that the state has given, the “fuel bill” remains high. So for some time now she has been optimizing her rounds: “I group customers from the same city the same day or half a day to avoid zigzags. At the beginning of my career, I drove 45-50 km a day at work that averages 27.” She also explains that she had no choice but to raise her prices a bit: 50 cents per.

She would like a helping hand from the state, but according to her, with status as an auto entrepreneur, she can demand nothing. She works alone, not in a structure and therefore also difficult to hear her voice, she continues: “The bigger we are, the more we get something, when we are small, we are forgotten.”

When asked whether she should reduce this bill, she has no plans to switch to an electric vehicle – the price per km is now 3 to 4 times cheaper than with a thermal vehicle – she answers no “I need a car with a large trunk to put all my equipment in, and there are not many electric ones. And in terms of budget, it’s not even possible. “ There is also the maintenance (especially the cost of the batteries) that questions it.

Sophie, hairdresser at home © Radio France
Celine Loizeau

Damien, employed by Tipiak in Saint-Aignan-de-Grandlieu

Damien, 37, has worked for Tipiak in Saint-Aignan-de-Grandlieu for more than 15 years. He lives 45 km from his work. Lives near Nantes, closer to work, “It is expensive” and there is family life, the work of his companion must also be taken into account. He travels them on board his Peugeot 308 diesel. Only. “It’s impossible to get together when you do the three-eight. You have to find a colleague who lives in the same city and who has the same hours”, he points out. Public transport, tracks also unthinkable given its schedules. He, who earns 1,700 to 1,800 euros a month, now puts almost 300 euros in the tank of his car to go to work. “We had an increase of 70 euros in February, yes, that covers the increase in fuel prices over the last few weeks. So yes, it’s complicated.”

The staff representative, the CGT association, expects that he will not provide support from the state for large rolls that the government provides : “What will the State consider as big rolls? And then the increases are actually not just fuel, it’s wider. There’s food, heat. The state has to force companies to pay employees better so everyone can make a living from their work. It’s essential “We must not forget pensioners either.”

His gray 308 is not about to leave him yet. “With my salary I can not change it today. So an electric, I do not even think about it. It is too expensive and moreover, even though I could, since I drive a lot, I had to charge it. Look at for example the company’s car park, there is no charging station. ”

Damien in his car.
Damien in his car. © Radio France
Celine Loizeau

Sébastien Renault, co-manager of Exodon and Trignaac

Sébastien Renault is one of the leaders of Exodon, a transport and construction company. The head office is located in Trignac. A company that has about 150 vehicles, trucks, vans … The “fuel” budget recently increased from 150,000 euros to 200,000 euros. “We have reduced our margins, we optimize our travel and we are even more aware of eco-driving”, he explains. The tariff invoiced to the customer is also partially indexed to the price development. Recently, his company could apply for a subsidy for this “fuel bill”. Should the state go even further? For him, “everything must not rest on the State, the solutions must be found jointly.”

The issue of “fuel” is not the one that worries him most today. Today it goes – “it is 1 to 2% of turnover depending on the subsidiaries” but there are other strong increases such as. the price of tires “we did with three climbs in one year.” A construction company, Exodon must also relate to the price of raw materials “everything rises, the materials, the pipes … “

Exodon has many large trucks where the electric option does not exist. The company renewed much of its fleet three to four years ago for newer, cleaner and less fuel-efficient vehicles.

Sébastien Renault, co-manager for Exodon.
Sébastien Renault, co-manager for Exodon. © Radio France
Celine Loizeau

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