Brits Should Get Scores in Shape Now to Avoid Christmas Credit Hangover

Written by Karen Bryan

christmascardOne in five (21%) British households are already worrying about festive expenses and nearly a quarter (24%) say they will take out a new financial product – such as a credit card – to help manage the cost of Christmas.

But while 70% will visit a price comparison site before applying for a new card, and over one quarter (27%) turn to trusted news articles to find the best deals on the market, only one in five (23%) will check their credit score. In fact, less than half (45%) of card-carrying Brits have checked their score in the last year and 30% have never checked their score.

Brits should be taking simple steps to boost their credit score now if they want to reduce the cost of Christmas borrowing. Yet 42% of people don’t know their credit score can affect how much credit card interest they pay, according to new research from ClearScore1.

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Not So Easy to Get Expenses Refunded After easyJet Flight Cancellation

Written by Karen Bryan

euro-notesWhen we were in Corfu on holiday, our flight home with easyJet to Newcastle Airport on Sunday 9 October was cancelled, the day before we were due to fly home, because of a strike by Greek air traffic controllers.

As at that time, the first two day strike was supposed to be followed by another two day strike after an interval of one day. Therefore easyJet was advising customer to rebook flights no earlier than the Friday 7 October.

If we were going to have a minimum five day delay, and our car was parked at Newcastle Airport, it made sense to try to get rebooked onto the next available direct flight to Newcastle the following Sunday 16 October 2016.

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The Autumn Statement by The Chancellor of The Exchequer

Written by Karen Bryan

one pound signSince Philip Hammonds appointment as Chancellor of the Exchequer he has warned about the economic damage started by Brexit and urges that this needs to be heeded. He speaks of the rainy days to come and says he has every right to feel gloomy at the present time because of the massive uncertainties caused by withdrawing from the EU. He speaks of “headwinds” threatening the country. However, he also commented that so far the economy had “confounded commentators” with its resilience and strength. He has since then injected optimism and hope with his forecasts and pledges in the Autumn Statement.

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PetGP Could Save You Money on Unnecessary Vet Trips

Written by Karen Bryan

dogOne of the big concerns for pet owners is the ever rising cost of looking after the health of their pet(s).

A visit to the vet can be expensive, with the average vet bill around £300.

Even if you have pet insurance, there is often an excess to pay on each claim. The excess deducted, before a claim for treatment by a vet is paid out, varies between policies but is often at least £50. Then there’s the time and expense to get to and from the vet’s surgery, which might also require you to take time off work.

PetGP is a pet telephone triage service offering expert advice that could save you an unnecessary visit to the vet.

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Why Don’t Virgin Money Allow One Log In For All Accounts?

Written by Karen Bryan

virgin-money-logoI recently opened a Virgin Money Regular E-Saver account. As I already have a Virgin Money credit card, I assumed that if I signed into the credit card account. that there would be a tab to enable me to open a savings account. But I couldn’t see any way to open a new savings account. Therefore, I had to log out and apply for the savings account.

Once the savings account was opened I hoped that I’d find a way to access both accounts through one sign-in, Again, no joy.

I was surprised by this, as in most cases e.g. with Halifax and Santander, I only have to log-in once to access all of my different accounts.

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BBC iPlayer Should Be Available Abroad to TV Licence Holders

Written by Karen Bryan

bbciplayerI would have really appreciated being able to watch BBC iPlayer when I was stuck in Corfu recently after a strike by Greek air traffic controllers led to our easyJet flight back to Newcastle being cancelled.

I wouldn’t normally think about watching TV when on holiday. However, the weather in Corfu was awful for a couple of days, and the TV in our hotel room only had two TV channels in English, BBC World and DW (a German channel broadcast in English).

As the WiFi at the hotel was very good. I tried to watch iPlayer on my Chromebook. But a message appeared informing me that I couldn’t access the service when abroad due to copyright issues.

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Saving For a Home? How To Increase The Chances Of Being Accepted For a Mortgage

Written by Karen Bryan

house for saleApplying for a mortgage may require a degree of planning and ensuring certain aspects of your financial and related situations are in order. Perhaps some building or rebuilding of creditworthiness before hitting the High Street to see what’s available, may be required.

The following will help you assess your chances of success and, if necessary, show some steps required to improve them.

Your credit history

You’ll likely be aware of the need for a good credit history and how it’s recorded. There are three main credit agencies – Equifax, Experian and Callcredit – who build a record of your financial activities such as:

  • Bank account use
  • Credit card use
  • Bills and other (personal loans, mobile phone contracts) payment history
  • Mortgages

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Make All Savings Interest Tax Free for Basic Rate Taxpayers

Written by Karen Bryan

coinstackIn my opinion, the UK Government should have taken a firmer hand with cash ISA providers.

I’d like to have seen cash ISA providers being compelled to offer the same rates of interest on all their savings accounts, whether standard or ISA savings accounts, However, I can see how that would probably backfire, with providers merely reducing the higher rates offered on their standard savings account to the lower level offered on Cash ISA accounts.

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How the Country Really Feels About Brexit

Written by Karen Bryan

brexitBrexit – ‘Britain’s exit’ – means as a country we voted to leave the European Union. Britain no longer has to contribute billions of pounds towards the EU’s budget but this historic vote on Thursday 23 June divided the country. Freedom Finance created a Brexit survey to explore the real impact of the ‘Brex Factor’. What does Brexit mean for our everyday finances? Will it affect the way we holiday? How is Brexit going to affect the property market, pensions and grocery prices? And how is it already influencing the economic decisions we make?

Since the historic Brexit vote there’s been gloom in the markets about the economy and the pound has been losing value in line with the current uncertainty surrounding the UK economy. Despite the fact it will take another two years for the country to experience any real change as a result of our ‘leave’ vote, the falling pound only serves to reinforce the financial unease.
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Great Customer Service from Newcastle Airport Long Stay Car Park

Written by Karen Bryan

car-parkAfter booking our holiday to Corfu, I searched for the cheapest parking for eight days a,t or near, Newcastle Airport.

I paid £43.22 for eight days parking at the Newcastle Airport long stay car park, by booking in advance through Purple Parking.

I was relieved that it was on-site parking at Newcastle Airport. A few years, when we went on holiday to Madeira, we parked at an off-site car park, which was hard to find. As our flight to Corfu departed at 6am, and we wanted to be at the airport 4am  I didn’t fancy getting lost in the country roads close to the airport in the early morning.

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