Whether it’s a few pounds or a few hundred, getting ripped off is a guaranteed day-ruiner. Sometimes there’s not much we can do about it (if you can find a solution to ridiculous parking charges, please let us know), but sometimes there’s a surprisingly easy way of dealing with it.
Some things are guiltier than others when it comes to terrible value for money, so we’ve ranked the absolute worst culprits for ripping people off, and even given you a helpful way around one of them at the end!
7. Cinema food
A thorn in the side of anyone who enjoys watching films which would be, well, most of us then. If you’ve forgotten to buy your snacks elsewhere, you’re stuck with paying a small fortune for a drink and popcorn. It’s a lot of money for something you’re absolutely going to finish during the trailers, left only with the need to go to the bathroom halfway through the actual film and lots of kernels stuck in your teeth.
6. Train tickets
Considering how small the UK is, it’s a little confusing that the cost of train travel is so eye-wateringly high. If you’ve ever thought of being smart with money and choosing a “staycation” over going abroad, you’ve probably been hit with the harsh reality that a train ticket to go somewhere four hours down the road can cost more than an international flight. And you don’t even get a little screen to watch movies on or an eye mask, just someone nicking the seat you’ve reserved and getting huffy when you point it out to them.
5. The mini bar at hotels
You’re probably still haunted by the warnings your parents gave you on holiday not to, under any condition, touch a single thing from the mini bar. And you probably remember the fact those warnings made you want to have some of those overpriced snacks even more. At the time it probably seemed like they were being dramatic, but now you’re older you know that mini bars are a no-go zone. That is until you find yourself inexplicably thirsty, too lazy to head out to get a bottle of water, and are unable to enjoy your refreshing drink because you know it’s put you £7 out of pocket.
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4. Branded painkillers
Logically we all know that painkillers aren’t a designer watch and that nobody thinks its a status symbol to be buying the most expensive paracetamol from Boots. Yet we all chuck money at a fancy version of painkillers because the packaging looks a bit more dynamic. Companies getting a good graphic designer doesn’t mean their ibuprofen is magically any better than the 60p kind, and this is one rip-off we’re all pretty guilty of falling for.
3. Having to pay to sit on a deck chair
Picture a beautiful, clear, sunny day, the kind we get approximately twice a year. Now imagine going to the park with some friends, planning to bask in the sun and… oh, what’s that? You have to hire out a deck chair? And pay by the hour to sit on a bit of wood and fabric rather than grass? While it is a rip-off, it’s also just a little bizarre.
Are crisps expensive? No. Are they kind of expensive when you consider they’re 30% crisp and 70% air? We think so. As far as getting ripped off it’s definitely small fry, but it’s still no fun to sit down to enjoy what should be the best bit of your meal deal, only to find a mostly empty bag doesn’t quite satisfy your appetite and the portion of actual crisps is so small you could accidentally inhale them in one go.
1. Energy bills
The worst offenders. If ripping people off were an Olympic sport we’d back the Big Six to take home the gold. Imagine you and your neighbour in identical houses, using the exact same amount of energy. And yet there could be hundreds of pounds of difference in your energy bills, just because one of you switches regularly and one of you doesn’t. While we can’t call on the savoury-snack industry to give you more crisps or sort out the whole mess of train tickets, we can help you stop getting ripped off on your energy bills.
Just sign up to lookaftermybills.com, let us get to work on finding you the cheapest deal, and then relax while we switch you to the best possible option whenever we spot one for you.