Tips from The Shoppers Guide to Saving Money

This brand new Channel 4 show looks at whether or not we as consumers are getting a good deal when we spend our money. This is a show for anyone who is a frugalist or looking to get the most bang for their buck!

In the first episode of the show, the presenters Dave Fishwick and Kate Quilton investigate to find out if consumers are getting a good deal on printer ink and pet insurance. This series is set to run for 4 episodes and I for one am intrigued with what the findings of this show will be. I will aim to update more topics that have been brought up and ways to save money as the show progresses.

Printer Ink

Printer Ink is something that I have always felt to be overpriced. The big producers of these ink cartridges have always tempted people in with cheap printers but then charge and arm and a leg for the complimentary printer ink. These producers say that you should use their ink cartridges as other non-brand cartridges damage printers and don’t work as well.

So the presenter of the show, Kate went to Poland to visit Europe’s largest remanufacturing company to find out if second hand cartridges damage your printers. This company claims that once they re-fill the cartridges, they print three times as many pages. So this proclamation was put to the test. The presenter filled two empty cartridges, one black and white and the other colour and tested them to see how well they worked.

But when Kate got sent back the ink cartridges, they did not work. This is because the company sent cartridges that were not compatible with Kate’s printer. In this case as Kate new the manager of the company, they sent replacements which did work. But the chances of getting a cartridge that does not work are very high!

One of the biggest secrets of ink cartridges was also revealed. It was found that many ink cartridge manufactures do not fill the entire cartridge with ink,  instead they leave empty spaces of air in the cartridge. You are essentially getting much less ink than you should be. Over the past 10 years, the average amount of ink found in a cartridge has gone down, whilst the price has stayed the same!

A top tip to save money is to change your font to Ecofont as you can save 20% on you ink


Pet Insurance

Bailey, a great dane puppy, was featured on the show. Bailey cannot eat solid foods due to a problem in his throat and thus needed a life saving operation costing a whopping £5,000. Bailey’ owner says she brought Bailey home from the breeder just a week ago. The owner knew straight away something wasn’t right as Bailey threw up his first meal. Bailey had come with 4 weeks free insurance but it was found that some insurance’s don’t cover things which puppy’s are born with.

From Bailey’s story above, we can see how important it is to get the right insurance policies for our pets. Different pet policies offer different levels of cover dependent on ho much you are prepared to pay. So it is always important to read the small print.

Insurance varies greatly on the type of dog you have. Pure breed dogs cost more to insure than cross breeds as insures state pure breeds are more likely to become ill as they are generally less healthy. Another general rule is the larger the breed, the more expensive it is to insure it. Age of the dog and where you live also plays a big factor in the cost of insurance

So are dog owners being ripped off?

A vet, Dr Mark Evans says no. This is because new technologies have come up that are used to  treat dogs better and these technologies cost a lot. And pet owners want the best treatment for their pooches,

Which types of dogs are the most expensive?

According to the show, the Giant Tibetan Mastiff are the most expensive.  On the other side of the spectrum, Jack russell are thought to be the cheapest dog to keep.

Electricity Bills

You can reduce electricity bills by simply turning off appliances instead of leaving them on standby. So how much would you save doing this?

You can save an average of £50 – £86 a year by turning off appliances instead of putting them on standby. This is a good amount for doing very little.

 It was also found people living alone use as much electricity as a couple or small family.

Denim Jeans

Jeans are the epitome of cool and and are a must have item. The price for jeans found on the high street ranges anywhere from between £10 to £200.

Many jeans sold in the UK , both designer and non-deigned are made in Turkey. The average wage in Turkey is quarter of that found in the UK and that is why companies are able to make cheaper jeans in Turkey.

Visiting the Turkish factory, the show depicted how jeans are made and how they are styled. To make worn out lines for example, they blow up the jeans and use sand paper to make the lines artificially.

So the question is, are expensive jeans worth it?

When it comes to the quality of jeans and whether the price matches this, Super shoppers gave us a good idea of this. It was found that Primark Jeans are certainly more durable than the more expensive Levis jeans. But due to Levis having a higher preceptive brand value than Primark, Levis jeans will always cost more than a pair of jeans from Primark

The tailor from an exclusive boutique on Savile Row thought that the Jeans that actually cost £45 was of higher quality than that which cost £198. So if a tip top tailer cannot tell the difference between various Jeans, how are we supposed to?

Fuel Efficiency

What speed should you drive at to save the most money on fuel?

On the motorway, the most fuel efficient speed to drive at is 55 – 60 mph. 


Have you ever wondered why flights are so expensive? What exactly goes into the price of a ticket?

It seems lthat a lot more than we actually think. When we purchase a plane ticket, the cost need to cover a wide array of things such as the following:

  • Price of plane (leases) – Many airliners lease planes which can cost hundreds of thousand of pounds a month.
  • Landing and Parking Fees
  • The cleaning crew on the plane between flights
  • Fuel
  • Crew – Pilots and air hostesses
  • Fess and Taxes to airports and countries they operate in.
  • Operating Overhead

The average profit airlines make on a passenger for a trip from London to Alicante is just over £4. Shockingly low.

One tip is that the best time to book flight tickets is about 8 weeks before you are about to fly. Another greta tip is that you can save money by buying an outward journey with one airline and getting a return with another.


Diamonds are a girls best friend. But how much do those big rocks actually cost? Are diamonds really worth the investment?

Tel-Aviv is a major global diamond hub. About one third of the rough diamonds in the word pass through Tel Aviv every year. The diamonds get to Tel-Aviv rough and are then polished to give it that sparkle. Once the diamonds are polished, they essentially double in value from when they were rough.

Diamonds like cars do not generally make good investments. Buying a new diamond that costs £100,000 will be worth only £40,000 once it becomes second hand. That is an astounding 60% drop from buying a diamond (ring) new to buying one second hand.

When it comes to diamonds, colour does really matter. Coloured diamonds are much more expensive than white diamonds as they are more rare.

To get the best deals on diamonds, shop around on the high street and online. Also consider buying second hand.

DIY Funeral

The average cost of a funeral has increased by over 80% over the past 10 years. The average price accords the UK is  about £3500. So what’s the reason for this. The money you pay for a funeral goes to:

  • Burial fee – For the grave and other admin for burial costs.
  • Fees for the person conducting the ceremony.
  • Gravestone Fees – The average cost of a Gravestone is £900. With gravestones, you pay for each individual letter.
  • Coffins – You can save money on coffins by getting it directly from a dealer. You can get coffins from as little as £200. Like everything else in life, shop around

When looking into organising a funeral, go to independents as well as big services like the co-operative funeral care in order to get the best possible prices. 

Cremations are getting more popular. 70% of people chose cremation over a burial. One of the reasons is cremations are cheaper than burials. Cremations are in the region of around £500, but it depends on the time of the day. This is a substantial difference to the price of a traditional burial as mentioned above.

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