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The UK’s top 25 money saving tips revealed

22 September 2014

Women take the lead when it comes to thriftiness, but men make bigger savings.

  • Thrifty habits save Brits nearly £600 a year on average
  • Men claim they save nearly £700, despite women doing most of the cost-cutting;
  • Vouchers, coupons and money-off apps top Britain’s list of savings tips
  • 42% of people have developed money savings instincts out of necessity.

Discount vouchers, coupons and apps top the list of the nation’s favourite money saving tips, with half of UK adults using them to cut the cost of goods and services.  Men reckon they make the greatest savings (£693) compared with women (£504), despite the fact that women are much more likely to make use of most of the top 25 money saving tips.

The research into the nation’s money saving habits, commissioned by Gocompare.com Savings and Nisas, revealed that, people estimate that their thrifty habits save them £596 a year on average.  Smart shoppers are also saving money on their food bills by taking packed lunches to work, ditching take-outs in favour of home cooking and downshifting to a cheaper supermarket.

Women top the table for 20 of the tips, while men only out-save or equal women in five categories:

Rank

The UK’s top 25 money saving tips

Total (%)

Men (%)

Women (%)

1

Use vouchers, coupons, money-off apps 

50

41

59

2

Take a packed lunch to work

44

35

52

3

Use loyalty and cashback schemes

41

35

47

4

Turn the thermostat down to reduce heating bills

41

35

45

5

Do more home cooking and batch cooking

39

32

46

6

Cut down on takeaway meals

39

38

41

7

Shop around for insurances

38

36

40

8

Keep a coin jar and save change

38

32

43

9

Switch energy supplier

29

27

30

10

Cut out takeaway coffee/coffee shop treats

28

25

31

11

Draw up a budget and stick to it

28

28

27

12

Plan meals, make a shopping list and stick to it

27

24

31

13

Downshifting to a cheaper supermarket

27

25

29

14

Never impulse buy – sleep on it

25

24

26

15

Only use cash – not cards

25

26

24

16

Take your own treats to the cinema

25

19

30

17

Buy second-hand instead of new, use sites like eBay or Freecycle

24

19

30

18

Review your satellite or cable subscription or cancel it altogether

21

21

21

19

Don’t use a tumble dryer

20

15

25

20

Never grocery shop on an empty stomach

20

15

24

21

Review your mobile phone contract or come off a contract altogether

19

18

20

22

Leave the car at home and walk or use public transport

19

19

19

23

Cut up your credit cards

15

15

14

24

Transfer all credit card debt to a 0% card

15

13

16

25

Holiday in the UK rather than abroad

11

10

13



For many people (42%) the basic need to save money drove their thrifty behaviour, while 33% had picked up money saving instincts from their parents.

The survey also found that while 64% of people were actively using money saving tactics, and most (62%) were happy to share their money saving efforts, over a third (35%) said they kept them secret.

When asked why they look for ways to save money, 39% said that they hate unnecessary spending, 37% genuinely need to make savings and 28% said they were on a very tight monthly budget. For 32% saving was just a habit and 18% said that they were ‘tight and proud of it’.

Claire Peate, customer insight manager at Gocompare.com, commented: “Women have in the past controlled household budgets within homes, buying the weekly shop and doing the cooking, so it’s not surprising that they top the table when it comes to money saving schemes. Men still tend to earn more,* therefore would have more disposable income to spend – so it makes sense that they would save more money by using these saving tactics.

“Our survey suggests that many people are feeling under pressure to save money to make their squeezed budgets go further.  Coupons, vouchers and money-off apps are increasing in popularity and can cut the cost of a wide range of goods and services – from tins of beans, beauty treatments, driving lessons and car tyres, to meals out - helping people to save money on the things they need or want rather than cutting them out altogether. 

“Another effective way to cut costs is to shop around for better deals – whether that’s on your weekly grocery shopping, household bills, insurances or other financial products – there are some significant savings to be made.”

-ends-

Notes to editors:

On 18 July 2014 an online survey was conducted among 2,005 randomly selected British adults age 18+ who are also Springboard United Kingdom Community members. The margin of error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 2.2%, 19 times out of 20. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current data on age, gender, region, and education from the most recent census data, to ensure the sample is representative of the entire adult population of the UK. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

* The Secondary analysis of the gender pay gap report by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport says that: “The gender pay gap was 19.7 per cent in 2013, which means that the average woman will earn 19.7 per cent less than the average man per hour.”