For first time visitors to Lanzarote, you may be wondering how to fill up your hire car at a petrol station.
I remember when we first arrived on the island we had no idea of how to say what we wanted in Spanish or what to expect when we drove on to the forecourt – we still laugh about it now, we had picked up a hire car for 3 days and asked for twenty pounds worth of fuel at the rate in pesetas back then, it was full at less than half this amount much to the amusement of the petrol attendant.
We recommend Plus Cars for hire cars in Lanzarote, they don’t have any hidden charges on top of the rental price such as fuel surcharges, the car is supplied with up to a 1/4 tank of fuel and you are asked to return it about the same level. There is now a petrol station at the airport so if the fuel gauge is showing nearly empty, stop here before driving on to your accommodation.
When you arrive at the petrol station, make sure you know which side of the car the fuel cap is located, where the release button is and if your car is petrol (green pump) or diesel (black pump).
Check before you fill up if the petrol station takes debit / credit cards, this facility is more common now but for some it will be cash only. ¿Puedo pagar con esta tarjeta? = can I pay with this card?
If late in the evening you may be required to pay first before being authorised to fill the car. Typically petrol stations are open from 08:00 to 22:00 each day.
The majority of petrol stations in Lanzarote have a fuel attendant, they will walk around to the drivers window and ask how much fuel you want to put in the car and take your keys if they required to open the fuel flap. Very few speak English, the easiest way is to ask for them to fill the tank, this is simply “lleno por favor” (pronounced: yeno por fabor). You simply sit in the car and enjoy the service.
If you are at a self service station, there are buttons of €1 and €10 you press the buttons until you total the amount you want to pay (e.g. press €10 twice for €20) or use the unlimited one to fill the car up. You don’t need to hold the handle during the fill, the pump will stop at the amount required or when full.
Fuel is cheaper in Lanzarote than in northern Europe. If you’re on a budget or only have the hire car for a couple of days then you can ask for an amount of petrol. Typically a small to medium hatchback will take €30-40 to fill, so you could ask for denominations of:
€10 diez euros por favor (dyeth euros por fabor)
€20 viente euros por favor (beynte euros por fabor)
Here are some more translations of English to Spanish that you might need at the petrol station:
Petrol station = estación de servicio
Petrol = gasolina
Unleaded petrol = gasolina sin plomo
Leaded petrol = gasolina con plomo
Diesel = gasoil
Pump number = surtidor número
Petrol cap = tapa del depósito
Full = lleno
Engine motor oil = aciete de coches
Air = aire
Water = agua
Tyres = los neumáticos
Flat tyre = rueda pinchada
We hope you enjoy exploring Lanzarote, please don’t hesitate to ask if you want some suggestions of where to go!