Scotland’s national advice service has launched a week-long campaign to help Scots simplify their spending amid the growing cost-of-living crisis. Advice Direct Scotland’s financial awareness campaign will highlight useful tips for people struggling with debt, energy bills, or overspending.
It will also promote the support available to people in Scotland, such as a free benefits calculator to check entitlements, debt solutions, and energy discounts and grants.
Advice Direct Scotland provides free, impartial and practical advice to anyone in Scotland, and runs the consumeradvice.scot service, working in partnership with the Scottish Government. It receives more than 700,000 contacts annually, across its organisations.
The new campaign comes after last week’s energy price cap was lifted, adding hundreds of pounds to bills, while food and fuel prices are soaring – forcing many Scots into financial hardship.
A recent Survation poll for Advice Direct Scotland found more than two-thirds of Scots are worried about affording their energy bills this year and many already feel cold in their own homes because they are limiting usage.
The consumer spending and financial awareness campaign will run on social media platforms throughout this week, with a different focus each day. It will highlight the multiple ways that services can be accessed, including online knowledge centres, and by phone or webchat.
- Monday – how to receive free advice from Advice Direct Scotland’s services. The national advice hub, which covers areas such as employment, housing, debt and benefits, is available at www.advice.scot (0808 800 9060), while other services include www.consumeradvice.scot (0808 164 6000), www.energyadvice.scot (0808 196 8660), and www.moneyadvice.scot (0808 800 9060).
- Tuesday – using the Advice Direct Scotland benefits calculator at advice.scot to check your entitlement to benefits, and where to receive housing advice, council tax discounts, and what support is available from local authorities.
- Wednesday – how to get back on track if in debt, and the solutions available to help those in financial trouble.
- Thursday – where to access support for energy bills, including discounts and grants, and energy saving tips.
- Friday – Consumer tips on making the most of our money, avoiding overspending, and reducing household bills.
Andrew Bartlett, chief executive of Advice Direct Scotland, said:
“People across Scotland have seen a huge jump in the cost of living recently, with further increases expected in the coming months.
“The price of energy has increased dramatically, with many households being forced to choose between heating and eating, and soaring prices have pushed many into financial hardship.
“Although there are practical ways of saving money on household costs, such as avoiding leaving electrical gadgets on ‘standby’ and using a lower water temperature on washing machines, these efforts are often not enough for those struggling.
“Nobody in Scotland has to struggle alone – our campaign is designed to raise awareness of the support that is out there from a range of services. This includes checking your benefits entitlement, accessing energy grants, and seeking support from your local council.
“Over the course of the week, we will look at how we can demystify the jargon to help simplify spending at this difficult time for so many in Scotland.”
More information on the campaign is available on the dedicated #simplifyspending campaign page.