It’s that time of year again when everyone reflects on the year that’s been and looks forward to what’s to come in the next 12 months. Here at Deals.org.uk, we wanted to put together a list of the 25 best money-saving websites in the UK – the ones we feel have done a cracking job in 2011 at helping their readers to really save money.
Whether that be finding them freebies, helping them get the best deal on a day out, save money on food shopping or by providing sound financial advice which helps people to save on things like mortgages or personal loans.
There are a mind-boggling array of financial advice websites out there so it can sometimes be difficult to know which ones to trust. At Deals.org.uk, we wanted to put together an easy to use list to help you cut through the noise and find the very best websites to help you get the guidance you need.
Money Saving Expert
One of the most well-known personal finance websites is MoneySavingExpert.com, led by Martin Lewis a frequent sight in the UK media and consumer champion of champions. MSE has a very popular forum where you can go to get penny-pinching tips, as well as a number of useful tools to help you find the best savings accounts, cheapest foreign currency exchange rates (travel money maximiser), a tool to compare the prices of MP3s (TuneChecker) and much more besides.
It’s their personal financial guides (such as their Free 40 page mortgage guide) however which secured MSE its place on our list as they offer a truly comprehensive guide to all types of financial products, they are written impartially by experts but remember MSE staff are not professional financial advisors and as such you are reminded to seek professional advice where applicable.
This is Money
This is Money offers a superb blend of coverage of topical issues as well as sound, straight-talking personal finance content that will help you steer your way through the minefields of savings, insurance, mortgages, pensions, utilities and more.
The also have a blog section where the resident bloggers draw on their own personal experiences which certainly helps to bring what would otherwise be quite dull subjects to life.
BBC Your Money
Hidden in the depths of the business section of the BBC website is a wealth of personal financial content which is exceptionally easy to understand and very well thought out. Similarly to This is Money, there is a blend of news coverage and financial guides.
As you would expect from the BBC, navigating the site is very simple and there is a load of great content to be explored.
Lovemoney.com is a community that aims to help you live life richer. The site is jam-packed with useful and easy to understand financial guides as well as their fantastic MoneyTrack tool which hooks up securely to your bank account. Once combined with your spending figures, MoneyTrack is a complete personal money dashboard, completed with visual charts and pretty pie charts helping to make staying on top of your finances a breeze.
Lovemoney.com can also help you to compare popular financial products and features a regularly updated blog which provides topical tips and advice.
The videos that can be found all over the site are certainly one of the best features of lovemoney.com as they help to bring the content to life and add a new dimension to the tips and advice being discussed.
The Guardian Money site’s layout has been well thought out with content divided into logical sections which enables you to find exactly the advice or news you want without having to click around too much. They also have a very useful A-Z section which helps you lookup the particular issue you want to read about. Their moneydeals section enables you to compare and switch things like mortgages, credit cards etc.
IVA.co.uk is one of the foremost Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) resource and advice websites in existence. They help you to consolidate your debts and manage your financial situation It is one of the longest established and most reputable in an industry which has its fair share of unethical and unscrupulous operators. IVA.co.uk has a useful payment calculator tool to help you understand the costs of an IVA as well as a plethora of guides and advice on dealing with debt and financial difficulties.
The free online resource from Citizens Advice Bureau, Adviceguide has a plethora of resources within their ‘Your Money’ section – guiding you through benefits, tax, employment and money management. The advice is entry-level it is a very useful resource if you find the world of personal finance a bit overwhelming.
Their fact sheets are really good and they tell you everything you need to know about issues like budgeting, repaying debt, saving money and much more besides.
‘Getting away’ can soon start to add up and at Deals.org.uk we are something of an authority on the latest holiday deals and discounts.Here are some of our favourite money-saving travel websites where you can save on everything from trains, planes, hotel rooms and package holidays…
Skyscanner helps you to quickly and easily compare the cost of airfares with just a couple of clicks. You select your route and dates and they’ll compare the prices on over 500 travel websites, very simple. The pricing bar charts that Skyscanner present are also a fantastic way to help you to visualise the cheapest days to fly and they have a nifty app for smartphones which has been used by over 6 million people!
Flights can be really expensive but let Skyscanner be your secret weapon.
With Redspottedhanky.com you can save up to 80% on rail fares by booking online through their price comparison and ticket booking system – simply plug in the dates and destination and Redspottedhanky.com will save you a load of cash.
They have a top offers section which helps you find the best deal if you are just looking to get away somewhere for the weekend and unlike some of the other train ticket price comparison websites they can help you sort tickets for train travel in continental Europe.
Hotels Combined is THE price comparison website for hotels – they search all the top travel websites to find you the best deal on the hotel you are looking to book. They can also help you search out the best hotel in an area because they aggregate reviews from many of the top travel review websites and they guarantee ‘verified reviews’ which means you will only see reviews from actual customers rather than faked hotel reviews which have become more commonplace.
Their iFind Hotels App for the iPhone is also superb and a real must-have if you frequently book hotels.
40winks.co.uk is the website to find massive savings on UK hotels. Through the power of group buying, 40winks allows you to save 50%+ on your stay at some of the finest hotels around the country.
40 Winks is the must-visit website if you are planning a weekend away or a staycation with stellar discounts on hotels in really beautiful parts of the UK including Devon, Kent, Edinburgh, Norfolk, Cotswolds and others.
Fast becoming one of the leading cheap holiday sites in the business, Sunshine.co.uk offers unbeatable holiday prices that are backed by a guarantee as well as full ABTA protection and no hidden charges.
They are online only which means they save money on call centres and pass those savings on to you. There is a wealth of information on their site to help you find and book the right holiday for you and they have a very quick to respond customer service team who are contactable via email and can quickly solve any issues you may have.
More about Sunshine.co.uk
Take a look at their savings calculator and we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at just how much you can save on journeys by sharing a lift with someone else. It is completely free to join and once you are member you can search for other members who travel along your route, you then get in touch and the
There are nearly 350,000 journeys registered on the site so you are highly likely to find someone travelling the same way as you.
There are also environmental benefits and many members say just how much fun liftshare.com is – no more solo journeys!
Freebies & Cashback
There really is so much you can get for free these days and there are a wealth of freebie websites out there to help you find the best stuff – we’ve hand-picked the cream of the crop and also picked a couple of our favourite cashback websites which give you money-back when you make purchases online at your favourite retailers. So in this section, you get free stuff and free money :-)
One of the longest established freebie websites around and still updated daily by Tom (the owner) and his loyal team of staff and freebie finders. The great thing about MagicFreebiesUK is that they scoop exclusive freebies which you won’t find anywhere else and they also seek out offline freebie offers aswell.
Unlike so many other freebie websites, MagicFreebiesUK categorise the deals to help you find what you are looking for so whether its a free bet, some free makeup, a free gift when you spend a certain amount or anything else that’s free, MagicFreebiesUK is the website for you.
You may have seen the TV adverts recently for Top Cashback and they are without a doubt the UK’s #1 cashback website offering a competition-beating cashback rate of 100%.
Once you are a member (it’s free to join), you can make purchases at your favourite online retailers who pay TopCashback a commission, TopCashback will then pass 100% of this commission back to you. They make money on the advertising that’s placed on the site which makes them different to many of the other cashback websites out there.
An incredible array of freebies for you to choose from – updated almost daily, WOW Freebies handpicks some of the best freebies and free to enter competitions – they also have a mobile app and web toolbar to help you stay updated with the best freebies whatever you are doing.
Don’t forget to sign up for their newsletter too as it has some great freebies and deals.
Froggybank recently merged with CashbackKings to form the new and improved Froggybank which is another 100% cashback website. We wanted to include Froggybank also because not only is it a great website for saving money but it also makes it really easy to make donations to worthwhile organisations and causes.
Similarly to TopCashback, you receive 100% of the commission that big name retailers give Froggybank for referring you to their stores but unlike TopCashback, at Froggybank, you have the choice to donate or keep the money. You can also setup a fundraising page to help a charity, organisation, group or school and every time somebody joins via that page and makes a purchase, funds will be raised for that worthwhile cause – it’s the perfect idea because it allows people to donate by buying the things they would have bought anyway.
Loquax is the UK’s competition portal helping you to truly impressive number of competitions to enter.
It really is a haven for any avid ‘comper’ as they’ve categorised competitions into new, latest and then closing soon also as a member of Loquax (it’s free to join) you can take advantage of their competition tracking tool so that you don’t lose track of the prize draws you’ve entered. The site is very community driven so you can rest assured you’ll find the best of the best when it comes to competitions.
It certainly feels like day to day living has become a whole lot more expensive so we’ve put together some of the best websites in the UK that can help you save money on everyday items like food shopping, petrol and mobile phones.
MySupermarket is a price comparison website which allows you to compare the prices of the products you buy across the major supermarkets. It started life just comparing food and other grocery items but they have now expanded into price comparison for beauty products and price comparison for wines.
You do your shopping as usual (from the comfort of your home or office) and then MySupermarket will tell you where is the cheapest. The website is quick, easy to use and you can save an absolute fortune on everyday items.
Supermarket Own Brand Guide
A fantastic resource for anyone looking to save money on their food shopping without compromising on enjoying their food – it has a comprehensive database of supermarket own product reviews helping you to decide whether to ‘go branded’ or make huge savings and enjoy a similarly great tasting product.
The site also has a number of great shopping tips to help you avoid overspending in the aisles and they also have quick links to all the latest deals (updated daily) at all the major supermarkets.
Quickly and easily compare the prices at over 11,000 petrol stations helping you to find the lowest fuel price in your area. You’ll likely be as amazed as us when you compare the prices at just a handful of petrol stations local to you – the differences can often be astounding and will mean you can save a fortune. And let’s face it, nobody enjoys shelling out for fuel.
Sometimes saving money on everyday purchases can seem like a bit of a hassle with the time and effort it takes to compare prices from multiple retailers – not with Invisible Hand though. This add on for Firefox makes saving money online really very simple. You can browse your favourite shops as usual and Invisible Hand will notify you discreetly when the particular product you are looking for is cheaper elsewhere.
Invisible Hand also saves you money on flights too, with 589 airlines in its database for price comparison. This add-on has helped its customers to save neary £100million since it was launched with the average person saving over £6 – all for installing a simple, safe and free add-on to your web browser.
WhatContract is an easy to use mobile phone deal comparison website – you can search over 1 million mobile phone and contract deals to help you find the right contract and the right phone at the right price.
There is a useful review section to help guide you through the process of choosing your new phone. WhatContract also has a very interesting “price watch” feature which allows you to see the average monthly cost of the phone over the past week to help you spot a phone that is coming down in price.
This is a must have in every money-saving-guru’s toolbox – it offers up alternative numbers for non-geographic numbers such as 0870, 0845 etc. You’ll be surprised just how much this website can save you because many of the biggest businesses we all deal with everyday have non-geographic customer service numbers which cost us Brits millions of pounds each year because calls to these numbers are charged on top of our inclusive home and mobile phone calls packages.
Read It Swap It
The UK’s free book swap shop with over 300,000 books for you to choose from. The way it works is very simple indeed and this site can easily save you a fortune on books particularly if you have a short term need for a book such as a reference or text book. It’s free to join, then you search and find something you like, ask to swap, another ReadItSwapIt members chooses something of yours and you exchange the goods.