Brits learned thrift during lockdown - and we love it

·3-min read
The pandemic has made Brits more thrifty, according to new research. (Getty Images)
The pandemic has made Brits more thrifty, according to new research. (Getty Images)

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted our lives in many ways, both positive and negative – but research has revealed the way we spend our hard-earned money is one of the biggest changes. 

It seems the events of the previous year have forced us to take a long, hard look at our spending habits, with a new survey revealing we're likely to emerge from lockdown with a thriftier mindset. 

According to a poll by SMARTY Mobile, 80% of Brits admit to wasting up to £3,600 a year on things they don’t need (hello, kettle bell we'll never use). 

Read more: How this shopper batch cooks two weeks' worth of dinners for just £5

Thankfully, however, it seems the financial implications of the pandemic have forced us to address the way we splash the cash, with 82% already making savings on 'unnecessary expenses'. Post-lockdown, we're cutting back on meals out, gym memberships, phone plans, clothes shopping and more.

Two in five (40%) have ditched a gym membership they don’t plan on reinstating, while 40% of Brits will commit to eating at home rather than going out. 

Read more: Woman who saved £10,000 during first two lockdowns shares her tips for stashing the cash

Brits plan on saving money post-lockdown by continuing park meet-ups. (Getty Images)
Brits plan on saving money post-lockdown by continuing park meet-ups. (Getty Images)

Meanwhile, over a quarter (26%) are going to bring a packed lunch into work when they return to the office and 14% are saving on mobile phone extras they don’t need.

Unsurprisingly, many of us are excited about measures being lifted, with 34% of Brits ecstatic to return to a normal routine and a third citing being able to socialise with people outside of their household the change they're most excited about.

Watch: Save money at home with these simple tips. 

But despite the excitement at getting our social lives back, Brits plan on saving the cash when it comes to meeting up with our loved ones, with 40% saying they plan on cutting the expense of going out by keeping up park meetings and walks. 

We're also planning on picking and choosing when we go out, out with over a quarter (27%) saying they will only accept invitations for nights out they really care about and 32% saying they plan on cutting back spending on alcohol.

As we wait to hear when (and if) we can jet off on holiday again, this commitment to frugality amounts to an average saving equivalent of a whopping £855 per person - enough for a sunny getaway.

Read more: 'How I saved £15,000 to buy a house in just two and a half years'

Many of us plan on ditching our unused gym membership and working out at home. (Getty Images)
Many of us plan on ditching our unused gym membership and working out at home. (Getty Images)

Tuns out lockdown has also made us more conscious of the way we spend our time, with 43% claiming they plan on clocking up more quality time with people they care about and 41% saying they will be spending more time doing things that matter, rather than things they feel they “have to do”.

As well as helping us to become more spending-savvy, lockdown also taught the nation some other valuable lessons – including 40% saying they have a renewed love for the NHS and 35% saying they now plan to prioritise their mental and physical health.

Watch: Couple transform their home, while saving money. 

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