We recently published another survey on our social media channels. This particular test focuses on parents’ worries about feeding their children during a cost-of-living crisis. We’re also inviting those without children to contribute savings tips and tricks, and share where they usually shop for food.
We also asked some questions about energy prices, to get an updated perspective from our readers on what they think and feel about the coming months.
As inflation hits 10.1% and food prices climb to a 40-year high, we wanted to get some thoughts and opinions from our readers. Plus, we’ve been doing a lot of research on food lately. In fact, we recently wrote an article about value brands from different supermarkets and how they compare in terms of price, variety, and ethics. You can read this here.
Now, back to the survey results.
For context, 41% of our survey respondents said they have young children in the house every day, with 4% claiming they have children at home part-time. This could be due to joint custody, work commitments meaning children stay with relatives part time, etc. It could be for a number of reasons.
Of the 45% of respondents who have children or have always had children, 10% said they often worry about feeding. 14% said they sometimes worry about feeding their children. 19% said they rarely worry about feeding their baby. The remaining 57% said they were never worried about this.
How much do you spend on food each week?
We opened our responses to all respondents, whether they had children or not. Almost a quarter of respondents (24%) said they spent less than £30 on a weekly shop. 16% of respondents said they spend between £31 and £50 on their weekly store. One in five (20%) of respondents said they spend between £51 and £70 on their weekly store.
The remaining two in five of those who answered this question (40 per cent), said they spend more than £70 a week on groceries.
Did your food spending increase during school breaks?
Yes, said just over half (52%). Only 30% of those who answered said no. The remaining 18% replied that they ‘Don’t know’.
Do you have any tips for saving money on food?
We wanted to collect some of the tips and tricks shared by our readers and pass them on to you! After all, knowledge is power. We were so impressed with some of the tips we received, we wanted to share them with our readers.
One reader replied: “Check prices in grams or kilograms. We couldn’t agree more! Sometimes, shopping bigger isn’t always better. You may think you’re getting a great deal, but you may be paying more overall.
In reality, Skint’s father suggest that “One of the most important things you need to do when shopping at the supermarket, and try to squeeze the coin as tight as possible, is to look at the price per unit. “
Fortunately, most supermarkets give you a lower per-unit price than the product’s price – whether it’s on the shelf or on the product’s packaging. Watch it next time you go shopping, especially if you have a lot of mouths to feed. Make sure you are getting a big bang for your money!
“Food!” Another reader replied. Our founder Jasmine Birtles touched on this in a recent article in which she discusses getting free food wherever you live. You can read it here.
Many people have suggested “Plan Meal Plans and Buy Only What You Need”. Meal planning can be essential when trying to save money. You can save money because you don’t buy unnecessary things, saving every penny here and there.
Plus, have a list when you go shopping – and stick to it! – make sure you’re not tempted by supermarket deals, or grabbing any items you don’t really need. Remember, supermarkets use all sorts of tips and tricks to make you spend money!
Then we move on to energy…
Do you tend to turn off the lights when you leave the room?
A whopping 80% of respondents answered ‘yes’. Only 10% say no, the remaining 10% admit that they do, but sometimes only.
Do you unplug appliances when not in use?
You can save £100 per year by unplugging unused appliances and equipment. Many electronic devices are using energy without people realizing it, such as computers, underfloor heating, towel rails and set-top boxes. In fact, turning off the floor heating could save you over £500 a year!
Back to the survey results, however. Just over a third of respondents (35%) said they turn off unused devices and gadgets. However, 41% of those surveyed admitted to not doing this. Almost a quarter (24%) said they did it occasionally.
Eco – turn off items at the plug and don’t leave them idle. Every penny counts!
Have you stopped using any particular device to save money?
There are many appliances that must be on at all times, such as refrigerators and freezers. However, there are other devices that can be used less or not at all to save money. According to energy supplier Utilitia, air-drying clothes and not using a tumble dryer can save you £116 a year or more if you use a tumble dryer regularly.
Similarly, using alternative cooking methods can save you money. Using the slow cooker for 4 to 6 hours on low is equivalent to 15 to 30 minutes in the oven. Air fryers have also gained popularity in recent months. This is due to their high energy efficiency, with an investigation of The Express Finding a dish cooked in the oven took 41 minutes and 42 minutes. The same dish that takes 15 minutes to cook in an air fryer takes only 20 minutes.
Of the respondents to this question of our survey, 40% said they have stopped using some devices altogether. 17% of respondents said they have not stopped using devices completely, but are actively trying to use them less.
The remaining 43% said they have not stopped using any particular device to reduce costs.
Have you started using alternative cooking methods to save energy?
On a similar note, we asked if people had stopped using cooking appliances in particular. Nearly a quarter (24%) said they were using alternative cooking methods from time to time. Just over a fifth (21%) said they regularly use alternative cooking methods to save on energy costs.
55% of respondents said they have not yet switched to alternative cooking methods.
What mode do you wash your clothes on?
Nearly half of those surveyed (47%) said they wash their clothes at 30 degrees. Washing your clothes at this temperature, rather than a higher setting, can save you 40% on annual laundry costs. Only 3% said they use the 20-degree setting when washing clothes. This can save you 66% on annual operating costs.
40% of respondents said they used the 40 degree setting to clean their clothes. Only 10% said they use an even higher setting when washing clothes.