Scotrail £17 Flat Fare for Club 50 Members

Written by Karen Bryan

Scotrail is offering members of its Club 50 a £17 flat fare return rail ticket between any two stations in Scotland. You must make the return leg of the journey within one month of your outward journey. The promotion is valid for journeys until 14 November 2017.

Within a few hours of receiving the email alert about the Scotrail £17, I had booked a return ticket from Stirling Oban.

I began by looking for tickets to Kyle of Lochalsh. As the journey takes a few hours, I wanted to stay overnight. I also thought that travelling on two different days increased the possibility of decent weather for the journey on at least one of the days. But I was deterred by the £80 price tag for an overnight stay at a hotel in Kyle on a room only basis.

As I have done the trip from Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh by train previously, albeit many years ago. I decided to look into going to Oban instead. I haven’t done that journey by train, and I thought that hotels in Oban might be less expensive.

Sure enough I found a hotel in Oban, close to the railway station with reasonable reviews for £50 a night, including breakfast.

There was pretty good availability of the Scotrail £17 return ticket on various days in September for both destinations for which I searched. But I did get in their early to secure the dates that suited me.

You could save more than the £15 annual price to join Scotrail’s Club 50 if you purchase a £17 flat rate return ticket for a longish journey.

Danish Business: What Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know

Written by Karen Bryan

We all have ideas and big dreams about what we want to achieve in life. However, not everything is based on having a good idea, it has to be put it into practice.

Not everyone dares to take this big step due to the pressure and expectations that both society and oneself. Will I be able to achieve it? What if I fail? These are some of the questions that run through the head of young entrepreneurs.

Fear of failure is one of the factors that affects young people the most when it comes to fulfilling their dreams and achieving their goals. Starting is the most difficult part, for that reason, you always have to have the same idea in mind, when starting nothing can go wrong, we are as low as we can ever be. The only way is up.

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TV Licensing Not User Friendly

Written by Karen Bryan

When you are moving home, you feel like there are a million and one things to do.

Prior to the completion of the sale of our home in Berwick upon Tweed in late August, we contacted various organisation to inform them of our departure date and to cancel direct debits.

It was fairly straightforward to do this with the majority of organisation e.g. the local authority re Council Tax and our gas and electricity supplier.

However, it was such a hassle dealing with TV Licensing.

As my husband paid the TV Licensing direct debit, he completed an online from regarding our date of departure. He received a reply by email saying that as the TV Licence was in my name, that I would have to cancel it.

I phoned TV Licensing and was told that I would need to call back after the 15 August, as it was too early to cancel the licence.

On 17 August, I phoned TV Licensing. On this occasion, I was informed that I would need to call back the following week, as you can’t cancel more than ten days in advance.

At that stage, I became angry. thinking how much time do I have to spend sorting out the TV Licence.

I asked to speak to a manager, who was able to process my request.

What a palaver. Why can’t TV Licensing accept cancellations up to a month in advance?

Review of Scotrail Club 50

Written by Karen Bryan

When I moved home to Stirling in central Scotland, I decided to pay £15 to buy annual membership of Scotrail’s Club 50.

With Club 50 you get a 20% discount on off-peak and advance tickets booked online (but not on Cross Country or Virgin trains). The discount drops to 10% if you book by phone, or buy your tickets at the station.

I reckoned that I would go to Edinburgh or Glasgow by train on weekday day trips from Stirling at least once a month. As I’d save £1.90 on the standard price of an off-peak day return to Edinburgh, and £1.65 on a the price of an off-peal day return to Glasgow, I worked out that I’d recoup the £15 annual cost of Club 50 after eight or nine day trips. I also thought that I might take the occasional longer day trip to Dundee, Inverness or Aberdeen.

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Why Credit Cards are a Good Thing

Written by Karen Bryan

We live in a world of instant credit and ‘buy now, pay later’, but applying for a credit card is still a scary experience. Firstly, the lender might say “no” when you fill in an application, and secondly, what happens if you go on a massive spending spree and then lose your job? Yes, there are some pitfalls!

However, it is important to realise that owning at least one credit card is important – and here’s why.

Emergency Cover

Credit cards are a lifesaver in times of strife. Imagine going on a trip overseas and suddenly discovering your wallet has been lifted from your pocket. What do you do? How on earth are you going to manage with a week left before the flight home?

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Are Payment Apps the Future of Banking?

Written by Karen Bryan

Online-only money transfer organisations are making international money transfers easier than ever. Many online-only payment organisations have mobile applications available to their users now – which makes it possible for users worldwide to transfer money on-the-go, whenever they need to. Additionally, the plethora of online money transfer organisations that have cropped up in recent years offer money transfer services with incredibly low fees and the best foreign exchange rates available. Banks that provide similar transfer services or fund wiring have been struggling to keep up, as their fees tend to be much higher and they often use exchange rates that they can benefit from rather than the most up to date rate.

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Money Savings Tips for Cruise Holidays

Written by Karen Bryan

Cruises have skyrocketed in popularity in recent times. This is, in part, due to the industry targeting a younger generation by offering a range of different destinations and proving all kinds of amazing facilities on board. Nowadays, cruises are multi-generational trips and a fantastic way to travel and see the world.

Due to the nature of the trip, a cruise can be an expensive holiday. With this in mind, here are a few money saving tips for booking a cruise holiday:

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How to Challenge a Parking Charge Notice

Written by Karen Bryan

I was shocked to receive a £90 parking charge notice in the mail for overstaying the 90 minutes time limit in the B&M Bargains car park in Kerse Road Stirling.

I recently moved home to Stirling. I was looking for things for the flat in B&M Bargains. I didn’t notice that there was a time limit in the car park and I had no idea that I had been in the store for so long. But I did end up spending £160 in B&M Bargains.

I decided to appeal against the parking charge notice immediately. Fortunately, I was able to do this online, attaching a photo of my B&M Bargains receipt. That was much easier and cheaper than having to complete a hard copy of a form, and then post it by recorded delivery.

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Talkmobile Now Operates On the Vodafone Network

Written by Karen Bryan

Talkmobile are one of several virtual mobile phone providers in the UK. This means that they piggyback onto the network of one of the major mobile phone providers such as Three, O2, Vodafone or EE.

I’ve been a Talkmobile customer since March this year. I use their £15 a month X-Large 30 Day SIM with offers 15GB per month, with tethering permitted. That plan also includes 2500 minutes and 5000 texts.

When I joined Talkmobile, they were piggybacking on the O2 network. Talkmobile only offered a 3G signal. I didn’t see that as a huge issue, as I have only rarely been able to connect to a 4G signal on my other mobile phone contract with Three.

I recently received a text from Talkmobile saying that they had now partnered with Vodafone and that I would soon be able to receive a 4G signal. That’s fair enough, if I am ever able to find a 4G signal.

My concern is that Talkmobile will use offering 4G as an excuse to increase the price of my mobile phone plan from the current £15 a month. At least I am on a 30 day contract, so I have the option to give 30 day’s notice to quit Talkmobile.

7 Things You Need To Look Out For When Purchasing Payments Technology

Written by Karen Bryan

Businesses need to be on constant lookout for the latest technologies to make their operations easier and significantly smoother than before. Whether it’s about their core competencies or support functions, businesses that take time to adapt to the latest trends and technologies are ruthlessly left behind. At the same time, incorporating the most recent payment tools into a business without having prior knowledge about the specifics may end up harming the company, especially when it comes to businesses for whom financial transactions are an integral part of the daily services.

To avoid the bane of a bad decision, businesses need to take into account the following factors when purchasing payments technology.

1. Launch Date and Frequency of Updates

One of the foremost things to consider when buying payments technology is the balance between how up to date the technology is and how long it has been in the market. Due to the changing pace of e-commerce and digital evolution, technology tends to become obsolete within a matter of months.

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