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Weekly Email
This email was sent
26th Aug 2009
Warning! This info may be out of date. Read this week's email
26 August 2009
Sent: Wednesday 26 August
Highlights below include ...
Negative Student loans £5 off £30 Lidl
£5 off £15 Dominos 100% Safe 3.75% savings
MoneySaving Live, £5 flights, energy price war, 15% off Benefit

David Cameron's commits to payback of bank charges
And pledges to consider AUTOMATIC repayment

In the past he just said charges were unfair, now David Cameron's saying people must be compensated "quickly and fairly" and he'll consider automatic payback of all charges.

The Tories' new commitment (if the test case is successful) came in reply to the open letter I wrote here, challenging DC to support bank charges being repaid without people needing to ask, as they were taken without permission (read the open letter).

A fortnight ago Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg spotted it, as he gets this email, and pledged a parliamentary motion on it (see Lib Dem pledge). This is David Cameron's reply (we haven't edited out the electioneering)...

"Dear Martin, Thank you for your letter about unfair bank charges. I am sorry it's taken me a little while to reply while I have been away from London.

I'm glad you liked our White Paper. Voters now know that if they want to change the way their banks are regulated they need to change their Government.

I've never shied away from taking the right decision when it's in the interest of consumers. But equally, I don't think it is right to make policy decisions without a detailed analysis of the issues. After everything that's gone wrong over the last decade, people don't want to see politicians making policy on the hoof.

When it comes to the question of bank charges I know there are a number of unresolved legal questions, and that the original judgment on the charges is now being appealed. Obviously, we shouldn’t second-guess any possible court decision, but once the legal issues have been resolved I agree with you that bank customers must be compensated quickly and fairly for any unfair charges that they have had to pay.

So I've asked my Shadow Treasury Team to look at your suggestion that banks should pay money back automatically if the courts do rule that the charges are unfair. They will be in touch with you to take this forward and go through the details, and I hope you will feel able to stay in contact with them to discuss this further.

Many thanks, once again, for writing to me. I think it's fantastic that websites like Money Saving Expert are empowering people to take more control over their own finances - so please do stay in touch.

Yours sincerely, David Cameron"



Week of Tue 18 - Mon 24 Aug '09
(Last week's position)

1. New. Private Parking Tickets
2. Grant Grabbing (New)
3. Savings Accounts (2)
4. Freebies, Freebies, Freebies (5)
5. Cheap Package Holidays (New)

The above excludes daily deals notes


Budget Airline Fee Tricks Exposed

Greenbullet Petrol prices to rise at least 2p
Greenbullet Scottish Power Cap Warning
Greenbullet 'Ban the wheel clampers'

Beware self-assessment advance payments

This week's full MSE News list

Two years ago when I was first suggesting this, the idea was scoffed at as the cost could hit £10 billion. The Lib Dems' firm backing of automatic payouts, and now Tory commitment to quick payouts is great news for reclaimers. Now only the PM is still to reveal his stance.

MSE News Story: Cameron commits to bank charges payback Discuss this: David Cameron letter Want to reclaim? See the full guide with template letters Bank Charges Reclaiming


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The Ones Not To Miss

New negative student loan interest rates. What it means, new calc & how to gain
500,000 twenty and thirty-something's outstanding student loans will start SHRINKING next Tue, as the interest rate goes negative. For 2.9 million more, the rate becomes interest free. What negative interest means: Even if you repay nothing, you'll owe less in a year than you do now. How it works: This brand new guide explains why this's happened, how to check your own loan, and answers all the key questions inc. the crucial 'Should I pay off my student loan?'. New How long till it's paid off Calc: Our new tool quickly calculates how much longer you'll be repaying for. See the New Guide & Tool: Student Loans Related: Should I Pay Off My Mortgage?, Should I Repay Debts With Savings?

New restaurant vouchers! £5 off £15 Dominos, £5.95 GBK burger & fries, 2for1s at Prezzo & 50% off il Bertorelli. Register, click 'n' print vouchers join Pizza Hut Delivery, Strada & ha ha 2for1s plus M&S dine in for £10 in the Daily Deals List: Restaurant Vouchers

New 100% Safe Top Savings. Get 3.75% FIXED for a year in perfect safety
Savers can now get a fixed, table-topping rate with 100% safety on balances between £1 and £2 million (not just the usual £50,000 per person per UK institution). Govt backed: It's because the 1 Year Bond at 3.75% AER, the highest available from £1, is from nationalised bank Northern Rock, meaning it's currently completely safe, though, as the rate's fixed, you can't access it for a year. Top Fix for £5k+: The West Brom BS pays 3.9% AER for a year, though it only has normal protection. Top Easy Access: The top easy access account, Egg*, pays 3.25% AER inc. 2% bonus again with normal protection. FULL info, pros & cons in the Updated Guide: Top Savings Related: Savings Safety, Regular Savings

URGENT! £5(ish) Europe flights (Sept-Dec) Ends midnight Thurs 27 Aug. A million Ryanair flights at £5 each way (inc some charges) from various UK airports to over 80 European destinations. Speedily find them using the Updated Guide: £5 Flights then beat the scores of add-charges with the Budget Airline Fee-Fighting guide. Related: Cheap Flights, Cheap Hotels

New. MoneySaving DVD now online for free. Watch Martin's unique one-man MoneySaving LIVE! theatre show
As a unique experiment, in Dec last year, Martin did an unscripted 90 min live MoneySaving show in a central London theatre, filmed as a DVD giveaway for the News Of The World. The DVD's quickly ran out, and now the paper's given us permission to put the whole thing online. What's in it? Think performance not lecture, a fast-paced (no surprise) run through of how to think about money & topic by topic how to save, culminating in Martin fielding questions from the audience of 400. Watch the video: Martin Lewis' MoneySaving Live! Related: Full Money Makeover, Budget Planner

New! £5 off £30 at Lidl voucher (per 20p paper) & 20% off Oasis, Kickers and Dune codes. Join 15% off Barratts code & 10% off The Book Depository in the Daily Deals List: Shopping Vouchers


Got friends who'd like to save?
Please tell them about this email

Beauty Bonanza! 15% off Benefit make-up code, free mini-massage / facial / manicure, £5 off Boots No.7 & more. These join free mascara, eyeliners & more in the full Deals List: Beauty Deals

The Hidden Energy Price War. Two new gas & elec tariffs push prices lower.
A fierce price war's raging. While standard rates remain unchanged, the real battle's to be top of the comparison site cheapest online tariff results. Check NOW or you can't benefit. New tariffs: Two more cheap web tariffs launched this week to fight EDF's current table topper. British Gas guarantees to undercut its own standard tariff by 6% until Feb '10 & E.On's new capped rate gives surety your price won't jump til Dec '10 (though whether they'll rise is questionable); both have penalties if you leave early. Your cheapest depends on location & usage so use a comparison site first... Compare & Get Cashback: (only via these special links) Top Pick: Energyhelpline* pays £15 cashback per switch. Dual Fuel: MSMarket* £30 cashback, Uswitch* a case of wine & SimplySwitch* £35 Amazon voucher. FULL info in the Guide: Cheapest Gas & Elec MSE News: British Gas new tariff, E.On launches cap Related: Grant Grabbing, Boiler Cover

Check for bogus mobile top ups on your bank statement. This type of fraud is rife, see MSE News: Bogus Top Ups

Free 5 min RNID hearing test. A quick online check-up for MoneySavers of all ages. Forum Note: Free hearing test

It's car insurance renewal month. Combine comparisons & get cashback to save £100s
As September's the new car registration month, many people have car renewals due. If so, sort it early, rather than a rush meaning you need to accept your renewal quote. Follow this system. Do a FULL comparison: Comparison sites search different companies, we've analysed their coverage to work out which to combine to get max. quotes in min. time, do it in this order (as many as poss): MSMarket*, GoCompare*, Confused* & CompareTM*. Extra discounts & cashback: Then check competitive insurer Direct Line* which isn't included by comparison sites and currently gives 7 days for price of 6. Once you've found your cheapest, try & buy through a cashback site to get the max The £14 Record: This came from an original quote of £134, then £120 cashback. Step-by-Step how to in the Full Guide: Car Insurance Related Insurance: Home, Van, Bike

Tesco Points Boosting. Spend £7.50 on ink cartridges, get £8 in Rewards. Buy two Canon compatible ink cartridges at £3.75 each and get 200 extra points, convertible into £8 of Rewards. Ends 26 Sept. See the Deals List: Tesco Clubcard Loophole

Sales Diary. M&S up to 50% off, £5 DVDs, CDs & books. The M&S sale's started online and in-store. See the Deals Note: High Street Sales Diary

Four Travel Tips You Need To Know. Tool of the Week. Summer Holiday Quiz mistakes
Last month over 10,000 people played our fun 10-question summer hols MoneySaving quiz. Spoiler Alert: I'm about to tell you the biggest errors so if you haven't played it yet, first try the Summer Hols Quiz. Four Tips You Need To Know: 1. 70% of people under-estimated Ryanair's added charges (see Beat Budget Airline Fees). 2. 53% didn't realise Section 75 credit card protection on most budget airlines is if an each-way flight (not return) is more than £100. 3. 53% people thought EHIC cards gave free medical treatment, only 41% knew it just means you pay the same as locals. 4. Only 43% of people knew five star ratings are about facilities not quality (see Cheap Hotel Booking). Related: Travel MoneySaving

Private Parking industry hits back at my "don't pay unfair tickets" guide. See m'blog. Related: Private Parking guide.

School Uniform High St. Price War... winner £3.75 for full uniform. This includes shirt, skirt/trousers & sweatshirt is available for £3.75. See the Deals Note: Cheap School Uniforms

Summer Hols Quiz


The Big & Easy Ways to Save Checklist
Quick links or click the titles for full pros, cons, alternatives & more savings

More MoneySaving

Great 'Best Plane Hand Luggage' Hunt: The cheapest & best bags allowed on board
Taking hand luggage only makes budget flying cheaper, as so far none charge for it. Though there is usually a 10Kg weight limit (see Budget Airline Fee-Fighting for the different allowances). So we want to tap MoneySavers for tips on the cheapest, lightest cabin luggage available. Remember it will need to pass the size test at check-in; easyJet & Ryanair allow a max of 55cm high, 40cm wide and 20cm deep. Add your ideas/read other peoples': Great 'Best Plane Hand Luggage' Hunt Past Great Hunts: View all

New School year... possible free school meals (worth £340/yr) if you've family income under £16,040.
May also apply if you receive income support, job seekers allowance and some other benefits. Find out if you're eligible in the Updated Guide: 5 Minute Benefit Check-Up

Student Home Insurance. Don’t assume specialist insurers are cheapest.
Home contents insurance to cover a student house isn’t always that easy to get; often as most policies like to cover the house not the person; not easy with flatmates. Parents' cover: If your parents have home insurance, ask them to get a quote to cost an ‘all-risks’ section specifically to cover your things while out of their home, many policies allow this. Go direct: Alternatively to get cover direct, don’t automatically think student policies are cheapest, always check elsewhere too. Full details on how to get the cheapest in the Full Guide: Cheap Home Insurance Related Guides: Car Insurance, Motorcycle Insurance, Student Bank Accounts

'A Guide To Uni Life' book giveaway. 20 copies blagged for MoneySavers. Want one?

MONEY MORAL DILEMMA. Should Angela give the old lady extra time to pay?
Angela has been working in a bank for five years. Her boss says she’s too lenient with customers in debt, and if she doesn’t toughen up, she'll be first in line for the next lay-offs. She then gets a visit from a sweet elderly lady, who’s just come out of hospital and has fallen behind on her mortgage repayments. If Angela doesn’t give extra time to pay, the lady’s home will be repossessed, but Angela knows her boss is watching. Enter the Money Moral Maze: Should Angela give the old lady extra time to pay? Previous MMDs: View All


Q. I’ve lost my job, do I need to tell my car insurer?

A. Yes. Always tell your car insurance company about any change of details as soon as possible, including redundancy or change of career.

Failing to do so could invalidate your insurance and / or see claims rejected, as career impacts price & the small print usually specifies, "you must inform us of any significant change in circumstances".

According to ABI (insurers trade body) the reason behind this is if you don't inform it insurers can argue they haven't had the opportunity to recalculate if there's now an additional risk.

Discuss: Tell insurer I've lost job?
Suggest: A question of the week

(big general issues not personal q's pls)

Quick Forum Tips
Warning! Bargains listed here tend to sell out quickly

Newry (NI) Credit Union now offers a Current Account. Good for those with poor credit
Credit Unions are non-profit financial organisations which offer savings and borrowing to their local communities, great if you struggle to get accepted at a bank. Northern Ireland Residents: The second largest Northern Irish Credit Union in Newry has become the 22nd union to provide current accounts. It's similar to a basic bank account, but with the addition of a debit card and great for those who struggle to get a bank account. For info on how credit unions work, how to find one near you and how to join read the Updated Q&A Guide: Credit Unions Related: Bank Accounts

Board of the week: Made redundant or expecting to be? Redundancy Planning
Month after month we hear new jobless figures, to help as well as the Redundancy Guide; we've a Redundancy forum board for sharing MoneySaving info, and support for those who've lost jobs or those worried it may happen. Discussions include Job application tips, Redundancy & age discrimation and Jump or be pushed?

Great 'Your Top Tip For New Uni Students' Hunt Result
Last week we tapped MoneySavers' knowledge for their top tips on saving for students. There were some great suggestions including How to P/T work, Cooking skills and 11 top tips


Royal Academy of Art: Lectures, Tours & PDFs, 3D Craft Downloads, Cartoon & Art Family Day,
Lacoste Challenge For Men Sample, Action Aid / Amnesty School Resources

Odds and Ends

Martin's Appearances...Weds 26 Aug - Tues 1 Sept
These are scheduled appearances, though other ad hocs may happen. See the appearances list for updates.

  • Thurs, GMTV, ITV1, sometime between 8:30 & 9:30am. Deals of the Week.
  • Mon, The Gadget Show, five, 8pm. Reviewing net-top PCs.
  • Tues, GMTV, ITV1, sometime between 7:20 & 9:30am. The topic's news reactive.

This week's Martin's Blog: The free 50p paper
"The private parking industry hits back...". Read m'blogs (or RSS users access)

Is the house price crash over? This week's poll. Vote and House Prices discussion.

94% of MoneySavers back the NHS! Last Week’s Vote. Asked to tell the US what you think of the NHS, given the recent stateside furore, an overwhelming 94% of you responded positively. 50% of voters thought while it has its faults it nonetheless beats any 'pay' system, 27% had nothing negative to say about it at all, and 17% reckoned while it needs some serious work, on balance it's still the best system. See NHS poll results.

Archna's Free Game of the Week! How quickly can you finish Just One Level?

Who was top of your pops? This nifty site tells you which act was topping the charts the day you were born. No. 1 fun!

We hope you save some money

Martin & the MSE team

Explanation of * Links

FSA NOTE: Referring people to insurers or insurance intermediaries can in some circumstances require FSA authorisation. For this reason, Martin Lewis of Shepherd's Studios, Rockley Road, Shepherd's Bush, London W14 0EH is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

How this site is financed. Any links with a * by them are affiliated. That means go via this link and a contribution may be made to, which helps it stay ad-free and free to use. You shouldn't notice any difference, the links don't impact the product at all and the editorial line (the things I write) is NEVER impacted by it. If it isn't possible to get an affiliate link for the best product, it's still included in exactly the same way. As I believe transparency is important, I'm including the following 'un-affiliated' web-addresses for the same things:,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Read more about this in how this site is financed. is the free to use Consumer Revenge website focused on how to save you cash. It's owned, and run by ultra-focused journalist and bestselling author Martin Lewis. On TV amongst other things Martin is GMTV's Money SavingExpert and presents money programmes for ITV1 Tonight. On Radio Martin has regular slots on Radio 2 Vine and Radio 1 Whiley. He's also a columnist for the News of The World, Moneywise and the Sunday Post. Find out more: About the site and its funding.

Disclaimer: This e-mail is based on journalistic research. It does not constitute financial advice. Any information should be considered in regard to your own specific circumstances. All tips are followed at your own risk and should be followed up with your own research Full Terms & Conditions.

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