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Cost saving benefits

When you have so many little things to pay for every month, they can really add up: utility bills; gym membership; insurances like car, phone, medical, life. Or maybe you’d like to be able to afford all of these things, but have to cut back to save money. What lots of people don’t realise is that their employer may already offer some benefits that can help.

On top of the benefits that employers legally have to provide you with like Pensions, there are likely to be other benefits on offer that could help you to save money. Some employers offer savings schemes, so you can lock money safely away for big events without being tempted to dip into it, and many now offer discounts on gym memberships and local restaurants or retailers.

We’ve compiled this list of a few different benefits you may have and not realise it to help you make the most of them and be better with money.

Discounts and cashback

Some companies also offer discount vouchers and cashback cards and these can really help you save. For example you could get a cashback card for your regular supermarket that you can load money on to, and every time you shop you will earn cashback, which is really just getting extra money for nothing! Pre-loading shopping cards can also help you to stay within budget – if you’re likely to overspend when shopping you can limit the amount on your card by week or by month, whatever works for you. Using vouchers when eating out can also help you to save whilst still treating yourself.

Health care plans

It’s likely that everyone at some point is going to need medical check-ups or procedures. Even if you don’t think you can afford Private Medical Insurance (PMI), you may be able to through your workplace benefits – it can be much cheaper this way. Your employer might also offer something like a health cash plan which is usually cheaper than PMI and can help to cover medical costs.
Your employer might also provide a dental plan which could be cheaper than paying for private dental insurance. You can usually also add your partner and children to your plans to help pay for their care costs too.

Child care benefits

If you have children, paying for nurseries and other care can be a huge cost. Many companies offer Childcare Vouchers to their employees to help with the costs of childcare, but there is a new Government scheme to help with this too, called Tax Free Childcare. Tax Free Childcare is already available to some people now and will be available to all eligible people this year, and will eventually replace Childcare Vouchers for most people. If you are already using Childcare Vouchers you can continue to use Childcare Vouchers. From October 2018, Childcare Vouchers will no longer be available to new applicants. Some people may be better off using their employer’s Childcare Voucher scheme so it’s worthwhile checking to see which option is best for you to sign up before the deadline.

Discount travel

Some employers provide you with the opportunity to get discounts on local transport if you use it to get to work. You can save money by using your benefits to pay for this as you can pay monthly and it’s taken straight from your pay.
Many companies also have cycle to work schemes, where you can purchase a new bike if you’re using it to commute, so if this is a feasible option for you it’s definitely worth looking into!

Financial education

It can be difficult to understand your workplace benefits and how they fit into your life outside of work and managing your money. Many companies are now offering financial education, particularly on workplace benefits to help you understand your benefits and make the most of them. If you’re not sure if your company provides financial education, ask your HR department, and if they don’t provide it ask them to!
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