Long-life food, foil and credit: Readers' tips for saving money this winter

Hairdresser Gracie Terranova said she tried to live on her basic wage and save her commission.

Hairdresser Gracie Terranova said she tried to live on her basic wage and save her commission. - Credit: Daniel Gayne

With Christmas fast approaching and the cost of living skyrocketing, many of us could do with a few thrifty tips. 

So, as part of our There With You This Winter campaign, this newspaper asked readers for their best money-saving advice to help you keep to budget this winter. 

There With You This Winter campaign logo

Our new There With You This Winter campaign will help readers in fuel poverty or facing financial hardship cope with rising energy costs and improve their fuel efficiency - Credit: Archant

Ian Bernard suggested people work out what they earn on an hourly basis after tax and travel costs. 

“Whenever I wanted to buy something, I look at the price and work out how many hours it takes me to own, use, enjoy that thing,” he said.  

“I’ve put plenty of things back on the shelf after realising that my time is more valuable than it is. And I’ve not regretted a single thing.” 

He also said the "best investment you can make is to be as debt-free as you can be”. 

Hornchurch resident Gabi, 73, who would prefer to only use her first name, added: “Re-use aluminium foil. You can wipe it clean and re-use it.

“Switch off everything overnight which you don’t need and only heat the part of the house that you are using,” she added. 

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Gracie Terranova, 19, said she was “not the best person to ask” about saving money, but did have one tip.  

As a hairdresser, she works on commission and said she does her best to save that money and live off her basic wage. 

Kim Hurley suggested saving on Christmas presents.

Kim Hurley suggested saving on Christmas presents. - Credit: Daniel Gayne

Kim Hurley, 59, warned people not to overspend on Christmas presents, while Nikki Hamilton’s festive advice was to buy long-life Christmas food items well in advance to prevent a big shock in December.  

David Taylor advised people to be careful about buying things on credit. 

"Sure, £100 on a credit card doesn't sound a problem. But if you don't pay that off soon, it can rapidly become £120, £130, £200... then you've got a rotten deal,” he said. 

He also warned people against using expensive food delivery services. 

Jason Cinamon, who works in the property industry, had a very simple suggestion: “Don’t smoke.”  

Jason Cinamon said he would save a lot of money if he quit smoking.

Jason Cinamon said he would save a lot of money if he quit smoking. - Credit: Daniel Gayne

The 39-year-old Elm Park resident added, laughing: “I’m still a smoker, but I know that I would save a lot of money if I did [quit]”. 

Our There With You This Winter campaign recognises the financial challenges faced by our communities this winter and is raising awareness of support on offer.

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