Seasonal food is nutritious, tasty and most importantly cheaper for your weekly food shop. Consumer demand means we are able to buy almost all of our food year round, but this does not mean we are getting the best deal.
Check out our seasonal food shopping guide along with a delicious recipe for the bright and sunny summer months!
Research by the FCA has shown that the average UK adult has a colossal weekly To-Do list of 33 tasks. They found that 60% of us are feeling overwhelmed by these long lists of things to do and that three in four of us are planning to tick off these tasks over the upcoming bank holiday.
Nearly a third of Brit’s say it is too time-consuming to get a weekly to-do list completed, but many people will be using the upcoming three day weekend to catch up. However, the FCA is urging Brits to prioritise checking to see if they’ve been mis-sold PPI this bank holiday.
The FCA has partnered with Countdown’s Rachel Riley and 90’s fitness icon Mr. Motivator to help inspire Brits to tick off all of their tasks this bank holiday.
Andrew Bailey, Chief Executive of the Financial Conduct Authority, said:
‘Almost half the population say a deadline is the motivation they need to get things done, so we’re urging everyone to make sure they get one important thing ticked off their list this bank holiday, and that’s checking whether they’re eligible to claim for PPI. The deadline for making a complaint is 29 August 2019.’
The FCA can guide you on what PPI is and how to claim back on it here.
Sorting out your finances to ensure you don’t have any unexpected costs is of the utmost importance, and it could save you £1000’s a year. The fundamental part of managing your finances is having a budget plan. You need to know how much you can afford to spend in between when you get your payslip. Firstly, use a simple budget planner to work out your outgoings and then you can work out your expendable income. Once you’ve got on top of the basics, then you can begin moving banks to get a better interest rate or switching energy suppliers to making further savings. Use this bank holiday weekend to satisfyingly reduce your to-do list whilst also saving money!
If you don’t have a to-do list, that could be a good thing! However, if you can’t remember what you had intended to remember, these are the UK’s top 10 weekly tasks:
Food bills are on the rise and households are looking for more and more creative ways to cut down on their shopping. With the surprise news that Asda and Sainsbury’s could be merging to become the UK’s largest supermarket, consumers are hoping this will slash prices. In the meantime, we’ve gathered ten tricks that you can use to help you save money on your weekly food shopping.
Avoid the deli counter — Deli counters are full of neatly packaged items such as meats, cheese, and dips, that are all sold in small portions and individually labelled. Similar items are readily available throughout the supermarket; at a much lesser price.
Understand how food brands are labelled and priced in a supermarket — There are several levels: Value, the supermarket’s own brand, branded, and finest or premium. Try dropping down a food brand next time you’re shopping, you’ll be surprised how much you save.
Remember your store points — Make the store points card your best friend, collect those bonus point vouchers and remember to use them. You’ll earn points very quickly and you’ll soon find you can pay for an entire shop with your points!
Don’t be too loyal — It’s tempting to return to your favoured supermarket to earn all the points, but sometimes it’s far cheaper to shop elsewhere. Earning points is never cheaper than paying for a cheaper item, so always keep an eye out for more affordable products.
Try “Scan as you shop” — Not all supermarkets offer it, but by seeing how much you’re spending as you’re shopping, you’ll be less likely to spend over your budget. Tesco, in particular, is a supermarket chain that offers “Scan as you shop”.
Research which fruits and vegetables are in season — You can usually tell by the price, because fruits like Strawberries, when out of season, typically cost anywhere from £2 – £3. Buy Fairtrade and buy unbranded fruit or loose fruit. If you can, you should try to buy fruit from outdoor or indoor markets, as these are a lot cheaper than supermarket priced fruit.
Look at every shelf when you’re shopping in a certain section — Supermarkets lay out stock at eye-level to entice you, but these are more expensive than items lower down that are cheaper.
Double check your trolley — Don’t need that fancy pack of biscuits? Put them back in their aisle. A large number of shoppers change their minds about the items they’ve picked up once they reach the till but feel too embarrassed to run and put things back. Stop in an aisle and rifle through your basket.
If you can, stick to a list — Think about your weekly shop in advance and try to buy similar items every week. Occasionally, you might need to pick up more items than usual to stock up on things like tinned food or cleaning products, but ultimately, you should roughly spend the same amount every month.
Shop during the evening — Most stores start reducing the price of their items as early as 4 pm, with the average item reduction time being around 6 pm. Shopping later during the day means that you can buy items that you can cook that evening or freeze for later.
Festivals are expensive. Most of the biggest festivals in the UK are around £200 for a weekend ticket, and that doesn’t even include the cost of accomodation, travel or food! According to research by MSN, the average British festival-goer will spend £405 a year attending festivals: a cost which is unaffordable for many.
Luckily, there are some guilt-free blagging methods to get you into festivals for free!
Stewarding is a great way to get into the festivals on the cheap. You’ll be able to meet new people, help maintain a friendly festival environment and assist people with site information. You will usually have to work a full day, but that’s not so bad considering you’ll have access to a festival on a free! Check out these sites such as Festaff and Hotbox Events for stewarding opportunities.
Volunteer for a charity
Charities such as Oxfam offer stewarding, campaigning and also volunteering in pop-up shops in some of the UK’s biggest festivals. Not only will you get a free ticket, but you’ll have the chance to give something back to world by freeing people from poverty and inequality. Oxfam offer tickets to attend Reading & Leeds, Latitude, Bestival, Boomtown and many more.
Become an Eco Warrior
Festival sites are messy, not just with mud but with litter too. Check out festival’s websites to see if they have any opportunities to do a few shifts collecting recycling in exchange for a free ticket. Although you may have after the festival is finished, sometimes the work may also be paid! Try looking on DCS Site Services, who have worked with festivals such as V fest and BoomTown in the past.
A Press Pass
If you’re an aspiring writer, blogger or perhaps you’re already a journalist, try to use your talents to wangle free entry to the event. If you don’t already work for a media company, contact a publication such as a student magazine or a local paper and ask if they are sending anyone to cover the festival, there’s a chance they’ll get you a ticket!
Be a Medical Volunteer
If you’re medically trained and qualified, you can volunteer for ‘not for profit’ charities such as Festival Medical Services (FMS) to provide healthcare and medical provision at festivals. FMS have provided medical volunteers for huge events like Glastonbury and Reading & Leeds. If you’re looking to take a course to further your medical training, they offer that too! Even if you’re not medically trained, you can apply to be part of the support and admin team.
We’re delighted to announce that we’re a named finalist in the Credit Awards, regarded as the biggest award ceremony in the credit industry! It’s three out of three for Piggybank this year, as we’re in the running for a trio of awards at the prestigious event.
We’re unbelievably proud to be in the shortlisted for ‘Alternative Lender of the Year’, ‘Consumer Credit & Customer Service Team of the Year’ and also ‘Responsible Lender of the Year’. PiggyBank is in the lineup against some of the industry’s heavy-hitters such as Tesco Bank, RateSetter, Virgin Media and AXA Insurance.
Here’s what Dan Ware, PiggyBank’s CEO, had to say about the great news:
“The Credit Today Awards are the flagship event for UK Finance, recognising success and best practice across all areas of finance. Our nomination is a testament to the hard work undertaken by every member of the PiggyBank team, our commitment to responsible lending decisions, treating customers fairly and a reflection of our culture of forbearance and delivering positive outcomes to our customers at all times. We have been nominated for some of the biggest and most prestigious awards of the night. So it is an absolute honour to be nominated.”
The Credit Awards are made up of 29 categories to recognise businesses of all sizes in the credit industry for outstanding achievements. This year, the award ceremony will take place in London on the 17th May and will see popular comedienne Katherine Ryan host the event.
Other attending finalists include leading credit firms Nationwide, Zopa, Experian, Three and Sky. All the shortlisted companies can be found here!
These days we’re less concerned with our minutes and calls usage and more worried about eating up our data on social media sites and the internet. This means we pay hefty monthly fees for lots of data. On top of that, you might want to get the latest handset bundled in too, which raises the price even more.
But there are very simple ways to get a better deal for less… Use these methods to ensure you’re not spending more than you should be on your phone!
Unfortunately, it’s true that there aren’t any shortcuts when it comes to making money. But there are a few very simple methods to stop as much coming out of your wallet every month. In fact, as Kin Hubbard said: “the safest way to double your money is to fold it over and put it in your pocket”. Here are six genuinely easy ways to save money!
You may be able to save yourself money on your online purchases using cashback websites. “But how do they work?”, I hear you asking… Well instead of buying directly from an online retailer, if you buy through websites such as TopCashback or Quidco you earn money through simply making purchases. You could earn £100’s in just one year!
Do a quick bit of research on a comparison like Compare the Market to see if you can get a better deal elsewhere and use that cheaper figure as a bargaining chip. Then give your provider a buzz and politely inform them you’re considering switching to a competitor. They are very likely to offer you a better deal in exchange for your business!
Ditch Your TV Licence
Streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video don’t require a TV Licence, so many people have abandoned the TV to watch catchup TV. From April 1st 2018 the cost of a TV licence will rise to £150, so cancelling that will save you a large amount for the year. Although, you will still need a TV licence to watch live shows on iPlayer or 4OD.
Cancel Your Gym Membership
If you’re a regular or even keen gym user, move along. If not, be honest, do you really make use of your all-inclusive membership that you’ve visited once since Christmas? If you don’t want to cancel, consider signing up for a flexible gym membership that is pay-as-you-go, or to save even more, buy some equipment and work-out at home. That is, if you have the willpower.
Search for Discount Codes
Get into the habit of searching for discount codes and offers before making online purchases. Use sites like Groupon, Vouchercodes or Join Pouch to gain access to discounts and offers that will help you avoid paying the full price!
The Consumer Credit Awards are a chance for consumers to decide who the best credit providers in the UK are. The aim of the awards is to help increase trust and transparency in the industry, so rather than these ‘industry experts’ deciding who is best, YOU can decide who deserves to win.
Since lending our first loan in 2012, we have continued to put the customer at the heart of everything we do. Treating customers fairly was one of the main reasons that PiggyBank decided to enter into the short term loan sector back in 2012 and we are always striving to improve our customer care every day. But we don’t get to decide if we provide excellent customer service, our customers do!
Having the kids home for the Easter holidays is a great opportunity to have some family fun time. Although days out and short breaks can quickly become expensive. But with this guide, you won’t need to borrow money to have a very hoppy Easter. Here are five ways to keep your kids and your pocket happy!
1. Activities at your local library
Libraries, and also community centres, often have a huge range of activities for kids during Easter. The majority of them are free too, baring one or two that may cost a few pounds. These activities, ranging from Easter egg painting to craft sessions, to Easter egg hunts, these all are a sure way to keep your little ones happy and busy during the Easter School Holidays. The next time you pass by your local library, look for the posters that are no doubt advertising some special Easter events. Most libraries also advertise on their own websites too, so you’re sure to find some quick information somewhere.
2. Plan a day trip
Day trips are notoriously cheaper than short breaks or holidays, and they’re usually close by. You don’t have to take your car; in fact, train companies tend to have deals on during Easter. Look for any local 2 for 1 special or “kids go free” and plan your journey to that destination. It doesn’t need to be anywhere expensive, like a theme park, because there are plenty of zoos, gardens, parks, and other places that you can visit as a family that won’t cost a small fortune.
3. Easter at home
Celebrating Easter at home is a magical idea. Not only can you find the resources you need online, ready to print, but you could also even cook a special Easter feast to avoid spending money at overcrowded restaurants. Bake some Easter treats and hide a dozen eggs around the place for a fun egg Hunt. To keep the costs down, try buying lots of small eggs, rather than one or two big eggs. You could try an arts and crafts session: use up those spare arts and crafts materials by making these origami bunnies!
4. Plan a party
If you’re in a close-knit neighbourhood, or your child has several friends that aren’t up to much over the Easter holiday, try talking to the other parents and pitch in together for an Easter party. You can hold the party at one house, and invite several children over, not only are you offering a cheap alternative to your own Easter, but it will help out other parents too.
5. Movie night
A movie night is perfect for a quiet night in at Easter. To make the night a bit more special: choose a few holiday-related movies, build a blanket fort, and put up some colourful fairy lights. You’ll quickly see how easy it is to create something from nothing. It won’t cost you a thing, and you could even turn it into a sleepover night for your little ones and their friends.
Easter can be a fairly pricey time of year. As well as buying many guilt-free packs of Mini Eggs, there are often lots of activities and parties to attend, so Easter can quickly become costly. We’ve found that you don’t have to spend lots to fulfill your post-lent cravings, so check out our top 10 tips for saving money at Easter!
Check your emails!
All shops have deals on at Easter. Delve into your promotional emails and the chances are you’ll find a useful discount for something you’ve been saving for. Can’t find the right discount code? Try using Join Pouch, this web extension will automatically give you the best voucher codes at the checkout!
Don’t buy Easter Eggs
We won’t lie, Easter eggs are great fun, but they can also be very expensive. It may look like you’re buying a large amount of chocolate, but actually a standard bar could be half of the price! At 515G in weight, a Dairy Milk Giant Egg costs £9.99, but their 850G Dairy Milk Bar is just £9.00 and contains nearly double the amount. Not so giant after all…
Easter Egg Hunt
Lots of small eggs are always a cheap alternative to buying one big egg, and they’re perfect for hiding in grass and flower patches. Have an egg hunt, and hide some tasty eggs around your garden.
You can make your own dye for much less than Easter egg dyeing kits cost. Simply mix a few drops of food colouring, boiling water, and a teaspoon of vinegar and you’ve got working egg dye not almost no cost.
Check for Free Days Out
There are plenty of free places to go over Easter. Check your child’s school activities, or local libraries for fun Easter activities. Garden and community centres often host egg hunts and creative sessions, too. If you’re London-based, this is a great variety of free museums to visit!
If you’re a home that bakes often, it’s very possible you already have everything you need to make some fun Easter treats. Cornflake nests are popular, and all you’d need is the cereal, some mini eggs, and cheap chocolate. If you wanted to go extra, check out this Creme Egg brownie!
It’s easy to make a quick Easter bunny headband. Templates are available online, and all you’ll need is some paper, crayons/felt tips, tape, and some string. Easter bonnets are another classic Easter activity, and you can decorate them using handmade paper flowers.
Do a spring clean
You’d be surprised how much money you could earn by selling some of your buried and unwanted items on sites like eBay and Gumtree. Even broken electrical goods like mobile phones and televisions can bring in a little bit of money!
Make your own Easter Egg
If understandably just can’t go without having the satisfaction of cracking into an egg-shaped mould, try making your own!
Have a Feast
Try having your own Easter Feast at home. You can make delicious foods for a lot less than it will cost to take your whole family to a restaurant, and the leftovers will make great meals for a couple of days afterwards.
Get the closed daffodils
These days you tend to see daffodils popping out as early as January 1st. Nothing says Easter in the spring time more than a bunch of blooming daffodils. The problem is once they’ve flowered they tend to wilt and fade within a couple of days. Make your purchase last longer than a few days by buying them prior to the bank holiday weekend and before they’ve opened up.