An excerpt from Metro's top tips ~ the full article can be viewed here
1. Heat the human, not the home
Getting extra warmth from electric blankets, heat pads and footwarmers is recommended.
Other tips include dressing in a base layer, mid-layer and an outer layer, using thermal socks and using the hot water bottle in a sleeping bag’ trick.
2. Free water-saving gadgets
Water firms hand out free water-saving gadgets via water efficiency site Save Water Save Money.
This includes shower heads (which help regulate water usage and are normally £20), tap inserts (which also regulate water flow, normally £5) and ‘Buffaloo’ cistern bags (which you place into your toilet cistern so each flush uses less water, normally £2).
3. Healthy Start vouchers for those pregnant with a child under four and on benefits
They can be used by families on low incomes to buy cows’ milk, formula milk, fruit and veg and other food. Apply via the NHS.
4. Stop overpaying for prescriptions
More than one million people in England from April 2020 to April 2021 would’ve been better off using an NHS prescription prepayment certificate.
Paying £9.15 for each prescription, rather than a single payment of £108.10 for unlimited prescriptions shows an average overspend of around £40 a year.
5. Get tactical with your oven and washing machine
Doing one fewer load of washing a week, using your machine on a 30-degree cycle and making sure your machine is full when you use it can save about £28 a year on your energy bill, the Energy Saving Trust advises.
6. The ‘Downshift Challenge’
Dropping down a brand level on groceries can cut 30% off bills.
7. Clip coupons online
MoneySavingExpert has a monthly 40+ supermarket coupons guide.
8. Household hacks
From cutting dishwasher tabs in half, to saving wrapping paper from opened gifts, all the little things add up. See hacks here.
Apply for free school meals
Check if your child can get free school meals in England.
If your child is eligible for free school meals, they’ll also qualify for the Holiday Activity and Food Programme (HAF). You have to apply before each holiday.
Your child may be able to get free school meals if you get any of the following:
Your child is able to get free school meals if they’re in a government-funded school and in:
Please contact the school office if you would like your child to swop over to dinners.
ADVICE FROM CITIZEN'S ADVICE BUREAU
Our advisers can help you find a way forward with advice on energy, benefits, debt and money issues, housing, access to grants, schemes and other support.
GET SUPPORT WITH CHILDCARE
Working parents are entitled to 30 free hours per week for 38 weeks of the year once their child is three-years-old.
The free hours can be used at any Ofsted registered nursery. The 30 hours are only available for working parents.
Find out more on the Gov.uk website.
You can fund your child's Breakfast and After School Club using tax-free childcare (TFC) accounts.
The government will pay £2 into a TFC account for every £8 you contribute.
Visit Gov.uk/tax-free-childcare for more information.