The price of fuel in Germany can change several times a day. According to benzinpreis-aktuell,

up to 20 price changes a day are absolutely normal here - at each individual gas station.


differences up to 25 Eurocent per liter are not excluded.

The same website goes on explaining that

Unfortunately, you cannot tell exactly at what time you can refuel in Germany. However, it can be noted that you should prefer to refuel in the evening (between 4pm and 9pm). Extremely high prices are usually paid at night and early morning.

It goes without saying that 25 cents per liter is a huge difference. I have 2 questions:

  1. Are there general rules to find the lowest price on a certain day? Is it true that the best time is between 16 and 21?
  2. Does the day of the week matter? Is there a difference between working days (Monday to Friday), Saturdays, and Sundays?
  • Yes, week-ends are more expensive, typically about 5 cents in my experience. 25 cents might not be “excluded” but I have never seen it and don't think it's common. – Relaxed Sep 17 '17 at 19:57
  • 1
    Perhaps more importantly, stay away from gas stations on the Autobahn. They're far more expensive at any time. The so-called Autohof (which are close but not directly on the Autobahn) are a bit cheaper, but still more expensive than a standard gas station. – helm Sep 17 '17 at 20:33
  • There is no general rule. Helm's advice to stay away from the motorway is generally true, however, near my parents' place, one of the cheapest gas stations in the area (at least on Sundays, 8pm) is located right next to the motorway. Another station just 2km away is often more expensive (on Sundays, 8pm), typically 5-10 cents / liter. – Sabine Sep 18 '17 at 15:11
  • Besides the website mentioned by nabla, there is also clever-tanken.de, which also offers smartphone apps. Those help you to find the nearest, relatively cheapest gas station. But note that often a difference of 1ct per liter does not mean you'll save money overall, because you need to go there first, which might consume additional fuel and your time. – simbabque Sep 19 '17 at 9:17

From personal experience as a driver in Germany for 15+ years (including 2 years of daily commuting by car between two major cities), I can agree to the suggestion that early evening hours are mostly preferable. I would usually choose the time between 18-20h. Between standard weekdays (Mon-Fri) excluding holidays there is usually no predictable pattern which one would be the best day.

On websites like benzinpreis.de you can get live information on the fuel prices of any German gas station, also including some history statistics and even forecasts for changes in the next couple of hours, which I found pretty reliable.

Note that (especially in rural areas) you will often find so called 'Freie Tankstellen' (with "free" as in "independent from the large oil companies") which are often 1-3 ct. cheaper than the large chain gas stations. However, they are often closed during late evening and night hours, which contributes to the phenomenon that the large chains increase their prices in the evenings and over night.

The above comment by helm (that autobahn stations are by far the most expensive) is also correct.

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