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BAMBERG, Germany — Some American motorists living in Europe stand to save a little bit of money in the next year thanks to a drop in how much it costs AAFES to deliver fuel to its customers.

Those costs — known as the dispensing costs — fell nearly 8 cents a gallon in Germany, with smaller drops in the United Kingdom and the Azores. If a motorist living in Germany used his full ration amount of 400 liters each month, he would save about $100 over the next year.

AAFES overseas pump prices are determined by using the Department of Energy average plus incremental dispensing costs, Lt. Col. Wayne Marotto, AAFES-Europe spokesman, wrote in response to an inquiry about the lower costs. The fact that the incremental dispensing costs have fallen in 2010 has resulted in lower gas prices.

There are many factors that affect the dispensing costs, he said.

First, AAFES Europe sold 41.247 million gallons of fuel in 2009 compared with 38.85 million gallons in 2008, so the incremental dispensing costs per gallon dropped, Marotto said.

The exchange service also did away with its fuel coupon system in Germany, switching to a fuel ration card system in 2009. The costs for running those programs also were factored into the dispensing costs, and the fuel ration card system is cheaper, Marotto said.

“The difference in costs between the coupon program and the fuel ration card for 2009 was about $1 million per year,” Marotto said, resulting in a 2.95 cent-a-gallon decrease in dispensing costs.

The one issue that didn’t factor much into the calculations was the dollar-to-euro ratio. Over the past 12 months, the dollar’s gain has been only about 4 percent.

Not all countries will see a decrease in costs this year. The dispensing costs for the Netherlands increased 1.2 cents a gallon.

That’s because the number of gallons of fuel sold in the Netherlands fell 18 percent from the year prior, Marotto said, leading to a higher cost per unit to deliver the fuel.

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