• A third of UK adults still rely on unsecured credit to purchase non-essential items
• Under half (44 per cent) pay for non-essential items, such as tablets, with cash
British consumers are still relying heavily on various forms of unsecured credit to buy non-essential items, reveals a new report from VoucherCodes.co.uk. The report highlights that shoppers are more likely to turn to credit cards and overdrafts than to their savings to buy non-essential items.
Nine out of ten UK adults (90 per cent) worry about how much money they have, with the majority blaming the soaring cost of essential bills such as utilities and groceries for the lack of monetary wiggle room. As a result, fewer than half of UK adults are able to pay for their non-essential purchases such as meals out, new clothes and gadgets with cash (44 per cent). More than a third are turning to unsecured credit such as credit cards (31 per cent) and overdrafts (6 per cent). The report also showed that 45 per cent of UK adults are unable to pay off their monthly credit card bills and with the nation's unsecured debt reaching £139 billion it is clearly still a big issue with consumers.
Despite this, the most popular non-essential item that consumers choose to purchase is a new tablet or mobile phone (17 per cent).
Women and money
Women are better at managing their credit however, with two thirds of females managing to pay off their monthly credit card bills (62 per cent), compared to only half of men who manage to pay off the monthly credit card debt (51 per cent).
The report also highlighted that 1 in 10 adults spontaneously buy non-essential items but do not think about the financial consequences (10 per cent) and 20 per cent assume that one day they will earn enough to pay it off.
Anita Naik, lifestyle editor of VoucherCodes.co.ukcomments:
"With the average UK adult having £3,167 of borrowed debt, consumers need to be smart and savvy about the way they shop and look out for ways to reduce costs of essential and non-essential items. If they buy something using a credit card and don't have a competitive product they could end up paying over the odds when the interest stacks up. There are plenty of options available to consumers to reduce these bills and make their money go further rather than having to cut back on quality or their needs. Voucher codes websites are an easily accessible way to get deals and discounts to enable you to make the best savings on essentials and so making that special treat more of a reality."