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Weekly Email
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28th Jul 2010
Warning! This info may be out of date. Read this week's email

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"Hi. This free, spam free weekly email is the key way to save. We put all the latest deals, guides and loopholes in, yet many close within hours. Don't miss out, join the 12m who get it each week."

28 July 2010
900 Free £400 Fridges Travelex flash currency sale
13 mth 0% new borrowing M&S 1 day 30% more off sale
Top 40 singles 40p, free £50 account ending, £5 RAC cover, £5 Pret for £1

No 'savings' exist - they're ALL 'losings'
How to ensure your cash is protected from inflation's ravages

Last week, the only UK savings account that beat the 5% RPI inflation rate was withdrawn (see NS&I shuts top savings), so at current inflation, save in any account and your purchasing power shrinks! Here are your options...

  • Repay debts. Unless all your debts are on 0% cards, they're likely to cost much more than savings earn eg. £1,000 on 18% credit card costs £180 a year, while £1,000 savings at 3% earns £24. Use this to repay the card and you're £156/year better off. See should I pay off my debts?

  • Overpay your mortgage. Next look at your mortgage. If its rate is higher than the 'after tax' rate on top savings, consider overpaying - though do check for penalties and ensure you've an emergency fund. See the 'should I pay off my mortgage?' guide & overpayment calculator.

After that beating current inflation without investment risk ain't going to happen. Yet, it's still important to diminish its ravages by getting the best rate possible...(Note ALL the accounts below have full £50,000 UK savings safety protection).

  • 3.2% tax free. Each tax year every UK adult can save £5,100 in a tax-free cash ISA. Existing Santander customers can get 3.2% AER in branches, otherwise B'ham Midshires pays 2.7% inc. 1% bonus for 15 mths, see top ISAs.

  • Lock-in up to 4.9%. Higher fixed rates are possible the longer you're prepared to save without access. The Bank of Baroda* (via Moneysupermarket) online account (min. £500) pays 4.9% AER for 5 years, and 4.3%, 3.8% and 3.15% for three, two and one year respectively, though for postal bankers, Punjab National is 4% and 3.25% for 2 and 1 yr. Yet beware, the longer you lock in for, the bigger the risk UK rates will rise, so it's no longer competitive.

  • Earn 2.8% easy access. The current top variable rate is The AA at 2.8% AER though 2.3% of this is a year's bonus, so ditch it after that. Or go for Halifax web saver*, the top clean (no bonus) rate at 2.6%, though there are very minor withdrawal interest penalties.
Top Story! Lloyds scraps PPI sales
> EDF Energy price hike to hit thousands
> Fight Yorkshire/Clydesdale mortgage hike
> Security warning for web forum users
> Broadband speed claims slammed
This week's full MSE News list

Week of Tue 20 - Mon 26 July '10
(Last week's position)

1. High St Sales (2)
2. Cheap glasses (New) Now ended
3. Top Savings(3)
4. Cheap Travel Money (4)
5. Grant Grabbing (-)

The above excludes daily deals notes

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The Ones Not To Miss

Urgent! Travelex 1-HOUR Flash Sale!
Temporary online rate boosts for €, $ etc this week. Perfect for airport pick-up
It's the first currency flash sale we've seen. Giant bureau Travelex has tipped us off that this week it'll boost its online rates in three 'happy hours'. When's it happening? Euros: Wed 4-5pm, US Dollars: Thur 4-5pm. Turkish, Croatian & Egyptian dosh: Fri 4-5pm. How good is it? We don't know for sure, but it's often 2nd place in some categories, so should be hot. To check, MSE's Holiday Cash Comparison site will update the promo rates when they're on. Airport pick-up? You can pre-order at these rates for airport pick up over the next few weeks. Top credit cards beat this: If you've time to apply, the cheapest way to spend overseas is on the right credit card, repaid in full to minimise interest of up to 28% APR. Top for rate: Halifax Clarity has perfect exchange rates worldwide and low fees. Top for perks: Nationwide* gives perfect Euro rates (and good elsewhere) but higher fees, yet major other benefits inc. a year's extra free warranty on UK bought electricals, and 15 mths 0% on balance transfers (3% fee). FULL info in the Comparison Tool: and Guide: Cheap Travel Money Related: Cheap Travel Insurance


900 FREE £400 A++ fridges blagged for MoneySavers. They're back!
Totally free super-efficient fridge-freezers just for taking part in an energy efficiency trial
Npower couldn't cope with the huge traffic the first time, now its servers are boosted. See the Deals Note: Free Fridges

Stop Press! M&S 30% extra off flash sale 8am-11.59pm today only (Wed). Online and instore, we're working on details asap. All updates in the Deals Note: High St Sales

Last Chance! Free £50 bank account + up to £10 per month
Bank Wars: alternatives inc "free £100 & 5% interest" or even a "0% overdraft"
A top current account's switchers' bonus ends this week (with all these you must earn £15,000+ and ensure your salary's paid into it). FREE £50 + £5/mth: Halifax's* Reward account pays account holders £5 every month, plus until Thurs midnight sign up via Moneysupermarket (the link takes you there) and you get £50 too. Yet only do this if you're always in credit as its overdraft charges are huge. BOOST this by £5/mth: Those accepted can then apply for a Halifax* Rewards Clarity credit card, which pays £5 each month you spend £300+ on it, and gives perfect exchange rates overseas. So set up a direct debit to ALWAYS repay in full, thus avoiding the 12.9% APR interest and do your normal spending on it, so you're quids in. FREE £100 & 5% interest: Alternatively Santander's* Preferred In-Credit rate account gives newbies a free £100 plus 5% interest on up to £2,500 for the 1st year. 0% overdraft: Go overdrawn and Santander's* Preferred Overdraft rate account gives accepted newbies a year's 0% overdraft. FULL help & more options in the Updated Guide: Best Bank Accounts Related: 5% cashback cards


Cheapest ever RAC cover - £5 (norm c. £28). Even bigger than normal cashback deal means a year's basic cover from £5 (AA for £7). See the Deals Note: Breakdown Deals Related: Cheap Breakdown Cover

Free £10 Body Shop lip tint & £13 Elemis mask (both in £3.60 mags)
New beauty freebies. Also £7 L'Occitane shower gel, £7 hair extensions & £8 Sally Hansen varnish
Join free £7 Neal's Yard cream, Essie varnish & free beauty treat in the Daily Deals List: Beauty Deals

Top 40 singles 40p & Mercury albums £3
MP3 sale! Plus download Now 76 for a fiver (the cheapest CD is £12)
The MP3 price war's hotting up, and don't think just because you've got an iPod or iPhone you can't take advantage, you don't have to use iTunes to download them. Top 40 singles 40p: HMV* has just relaunched its digital site and is offering most top 40 tracks for 40p (though oddly it's not using the official chart) inc. the new No 1 'We speak No Americano', (compare all top 40 singles prices). Get Now 76 for £5: While the cheapest CD costs £12, until 4 August you can download Now 76 for a fiver, not bad as even if you downloaded the 46 separate tracks the cheapest way, it'd cost you around £22. £3 Mercury nominated albums: The coveted nominations have just been announced and Amazon is offering nominees' albums for £3 inc. Biffy Clyro's Revolutions, Foals' Total Life Forever and Corinne Bailey Rae's The Sea. Compare MP3 Prices: Related: Over 806 free MP3s


£5 Pret A Manger card for £1 p&p. Limited Number! Grab a pre-loaded £5 card to spend at Pret for a quid. See the Daily Deals List: Restaurant Vouchers


Codes! Wallis 15% off, BodyShop 25% off, Blacks 20% off, £5 off £30 Lidl w/40p paper
Plus £20 off £70 Gondola wines, £5 off £50 Game, 12% off Barratts & 25% off Planet w/£4 mag
Then there's 20% off H&M, 10% off Family & Friends railcard and more in the Daily Deals List: Discount Vouchers

New Tesco 13mth 0% on spending PLUS rewards
Totally free borrowing and points on top - can be used to make £100s a year
This is the first card for an age offering more than a year's 0% on spending. Yet only use it for new borrowing if you can afford to repay within a year as the rate rockets to 16.9% APR afterwards. New Top Card: Tesco's* credit card now offers 0% for 13 mths on new purchases plus you get a Clubcard point per £4 spent (worth up to 4p if redeemed on 'Clubcard Rewards'). Runners up at 0% for 12 mths inc. Barclaycard Platinum* and Virgin* (15.9%-18.9% APR after). Use it to make £100s: It's possible for the financially savvy & debt free to use this card to 'stooze' (make profit from 0% debt). Simply get a card & do your usual day-to-day purchases on it (not an excuse to spend more), making only the min. repayments to build the debt up while earning points. As you're spending on the card, unspent wages build in your bank account and can be saved at up to 3.2% in a cash ISA or top savings, so you earn interest on money they've lent for nowt! Then repay in full at the end of the 0% period. FULL info, pros and cons in the Updated Guides: 0% Spending for 13 mths and How to Stooze Related: 0% For 16 mths Bal Transfers, 3.2% Cash ISAs, 2.8% Savings

Make money from plastic

Forum Hottie! £14 breadmaker at Currys (was £35) This deal's been rising in our forums and now it's baking hot. Cough up the dough for a bargain breadmaker (sorry). See Forum Note: I knead a breadmaker! (sorry again) Related: Thrifty Ways

Warning! Tax credit renewal deadline this Sat
Fail to renew correctly and risk payments stopping or overpayment hell
If you've only a renewal form, just check it, but with declaration forms, sign & return asap. If owt's wrong call 0845 300 3900 Full details: Tax Credit Renewal

Urgent! Cheapest 'Unlimited' Broadband £6 per mth
Ends this Sat! Beat the tenner a month barrier without limited downloads
Two big broadband providers have launched short-term '3 months free' on their 12 month contract deals. Unlimited Broadband £6 - £9/mth: Until this Sat 31 July, O2's* offering 3 mths free on its unlimited download deal. This costs £7.50/mth for existing O2 mobile customers or £12.50 for others, yet the free months mean the average contract cost's just £5.63/mth and £9.38/mth. While it's by far the cheapest even for non-O2 mobile customers, those willing to play could qualify for the cheaper rate by grabbing a free PAYG sim* and topping up £10 every 3mths. Standard Broadband £6.95/mth: Alternatively new customers at BT-owned Plusnet* get 3 months free until 31 Aug on its £6.49/mth plus £25 activation fee deal. All-in that's an average £6.95 a month over the year. It has a 10GB monthly download and upload limit. FULL info, including getting added cashback and more best-buys in the Updated Guide: Cheap Broadband Related: £8.99 phone line rental, 3G Broadband

Forum Hottie! £75 outdoor 8ft trampoline inc enclosure! Loved in the forum, it's half price in-store at B&Q but selling out fast. See the Forum Note: B&Q trampoline

Urgent! £50 extra cashback on super-cheap British Gas deal
Short promo means you get £50 ON TOP of usual cash or wine crate
British Gas' dual fuel Websaver 8 online tariff is already in the top 3 for most people, saving £200+ a year for many. Yet a short term promo means sign up via certain comparison sites (not direct) and you get £50 credit for the dual fuel tariff on top of the usual extra freebies via the links below, but only after you've been with it a year. Any good? With the £50 boost it'll be cheapest overall for many and the price is guaranteed to stay at least 6% under BG's standard price until Oct 2011. Yet like most guaranteed rate tariffs it has a £60 exit penalty before then -so if other prices drop a lot (unlikely but not impossible) it'd diminish the switching gain. Compare, switch & get extra cashback: The £50 extra is available through Energyhelpline* which via this special link pays £15 cashback per switch and Uswitch* which gives a free case of wine. FULL general switching info in the Guide: Switch Gas & Elec Related: Boiler Cover, Grant Grabbing


Kids eat free! At Pizza Hut, Brasserie Gerard, Fire & Stone & more
Free kids meal per full price adult main joins new instant 50% off La Tasca & Zizzi 2 for £10 vouchers
Plus 2for1ish at Pizza Express & GBK and other deals at Strada, Prezzo all in the Daily Deals List: Restaurant Vouchers

Hidden grants and scholarships. New Guide!
Summer schools, free part time degrees & places for students to tap extra cash
Don't believe the hype, education and grants still go together like Itchy and Scratchy. Our new guide shows hidden forms of funding, including... Free Part Time Degrees: If you want to study part time including OU home study, and earn under £28,000 a grant scheme means you could get it for free including cash towards living costs. Hidden Student Grants Searches: It's often less about academic ability and more about religion, geographic location, parental occupation or even what pub's near your home. Check out the Scholarship Search and Studentcashpoint websites. Free short courses: For the under 25s in London, 100s of courses and activities are free during the summer inc. animation, animal care and aqua extreme. Plus virtually every college offers free courses for adults of any age wanting to improve their Maths, English and IT schemes. FULL info and much more in the New Guide: Education Grants Related: Energy Grant Grabbing, Student Loans, Free Foreign Language Lesson


Sub £5 cross country coach tickets (250,000 available). National Express sale, get them quick! Routes inc. Ldn to Manc, Newc. to Sheff, Manc to Glgw & more. See Deals Note: Train & Coach Deals

Are At Cost Energy's promises for real? The much-hyped energy provider claimed it'll sell gas & electricity 'at cost', then went quiet, but its top brass agreed to an interview after Martin's At Cost - any good? blog. See MSE News: At Cost Energy Interview

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

More MoneySaving

Free £48 EuroDisney ticket with P&O ferry trip (min £25). Book til 30 Sept for cars with up to 9 people. Full info in the Deals Note: Cheap Days Out

What'd you tell the Financial Ombudsman Service? We're meeting the FOS, and would love your feedback on which issues the financial disputes body should address. More info/Discuss: Ombudsman feedback Related: Financial Rights Guide

Great 'Best shops & chains to haggle in' Hunt revisited'
Haggling can save you big bucks, just be polite and with a bit of chutzpah. A few years ago we asked MoneySavers for the best chains and shops they've haggled in and we think it's time to do it again. Please Add your ideas/read other people's: Great 'Best shop chains to haggle in revisited' Hunt Past Great Hunts: View all Related: High St. Haggling tips

Is duty free cheaper before you jet off or on arrival? Test a new site which tells you airport-by-airport, possibly cutting hand luggage. See the Forum Note: Duty-Free On Arrival


Ryanair. Price: £10 e/w. Ends: Midnight Thurs 29 July
Ryanair is selling flights for £10 each way (inc. some charges) from various UK airports to around 40 European destinations, for travel throughout Sept and Oct. Speedily find them using the FlightChecker & beat the scores of add-on charges with the Budget Airline Fee Fighting guide. Related: Cheap Flights, Cheap Hotels, Spending Abroad, Cheap Currency, Travel Insurance

Money Moral Dilema

Should I make my friend pay for the vase?

This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...
I hired my friend, at her request, to clean my house as she's only working part-time and needs extra cash. The other day while cleaning the living room, she broke an expensive vase given to me as a birthday present. If she wasn't my friend, I would've docked it off her wages. But I know she's a bit broke at the moment. Enter the Money Moral Maze: Should I make her pay for it? Previous MMDs: View All Suggest: A Money Moral Dilemma

Quick Forum Tips
Tips, Tricks and Treats

Great 'Home Exercise' Hunt Result
Last week, we asked MoneySavers to share some home exercise plans for people to get fit on the cheap. Suggestions include home skipping, chair workouts and free stairmaster.

Board Of The Week
Mortgage-Free Wannabe
The popular Mortgage-Free Wannabe offers support and advice for Moneysavers repaying their mortgage. Recent discussions include pay off mortgage & have fun, simple to be MF and overpay or save? Related Guide: Should I pay off my mortgage?
What's your biggest bill? This week's poll
and Bills, Bills, Bills discussion.

MoneySavers split on the BBC licence fee. 29,340 voted
In last week's "do you believe in the licence fee" poll, 50% said no, it should be ad funded. Of the yeses just over half said it should be scaled back, leaving the remainder happy as it is. View the BBFree poll results.
Archna's Free Game of the Week!
This one's all about balance & timing. Rotate & Roll

"Large New York loft apartments are affordable for the unemployed!" That's it for this week, but before we go, have a look at these facts that are always true in the movies!

We hope you save some money,

Martin & the MSE team


Q. I'm a diver and would like to beat budget airline baggage charges by wearing my 10 kg underwater buoyancy control device on the plane as hand luggage? Steve, by email.

Martin's A. Hilarious! This I presume is on the back of my budget airline jacket with a poacher's pocket so you can stuff 10kg of socks, books and more in it, to supplement hand luggage and forgo the need to pay for a case.

In your case there's no technical reason it shouldn't work, though I'd worry about taking those metal lumps through security. Yet it's a very obvious breach and you may be pushing the airlines a bit too far - they can always ask you to take it off and weigh it. So it's a case of let the flyer beware I'm afraid.

Discuss: Beat Budget Airlines
Suggest: A question of the week
(big general issues not personal q's pls)

Andrea's Freebies
Full compendium
Freebies, Freebies, Freebies
New this week

Clinique sample

Index note tabs
Scotland Relaxation CD & booklet
Crayola art pack
Hugo Boss perfume

Martin's Stuff
This week's blogs (See All)
Find Martin on facebook!Join Martin on facebook!

"Moira Stuart and the Misfit…"

"Bad joke but hilarious responses"

"Wow it actually types as I talk! Sadly my RSI is back"

"How many times? If your bank says no to PPI reclaiming, it's not a failure!"

Weds 28 Jul - Tues 3 Aug

GMTV, ITV1, 8:50am
Deals of the Week

BBC Radio 5, Live, 12-1pm
Consumer panel

GMTV, ITV1, 6:50am
Subject tbc

Martin's Appearances

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, Charecroft Way, 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 we 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 we believe transparency is important, we're 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 amongst others the News of The World, The Telegraph and the Sunday Post. Find out more: About the site and its funding.

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