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Seasonal spending takes its toll

Seasonal spending takes its toll

Category: Health insurance

Updated: 29/12/2014
First Published: 29/12/2014

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

The biggest shopping season of the year is drawing to a close, and after all that Christmas indulgence, chances are you've overspent a bit. But, that shouldn't be an excuse to let your health suffer next year…

Seasonal spending takes its toll

Research from personal finance service MoneyDashboard has found that consumers are on track to spend an average of 35% more this December than they did last month, with outgoings on food and drink alone set to increase by 13% compared with November. Not a huge surprise given the importance of the Christmas feast, but what could be more surprising is the increase in bills and utilities, which could rise by 19%.

This clear increase in spending will understandably stretch the budget, and unfortunately, it means many consumers will need to cut back in the New Year. In fact, consumer spending is expected to fall by 20% in the first three months of 2015 compared with the same period this year, as such significant spending over the festive season starts to take its toll.

However, while some things can easily be put on the backburner – spending on clothes is set to fall by 8%, while consumers will spend some 21% less on leisure and entertainment in the first quarter – others shouldn't be overlooked. Spending on personal healthcare is definitely one of them.

The most worrying finding was the indication that consumers will neglect their health, with a 33% drop in spending on healthcare set to occur in the first three months of 2015 compared with the last three months of this year. This includes reduced spending on dental treatment, optical appointments, medications and health insurance, as consumers begin to look for ways they can make up for their excessive spending – with many viewing these kinds of costs as luxuries than essentials.

Don't get complacent

Arguably, there's nothing more important than spending on your health. This should never be seen as a luxury but as a core part of your budget, and even things like health insurance shouldn't be overlooked. Not only can this ensure you'll get the treatment you need as soon as you need it, but it could be a great way to help you budget, too – by paying for medical treatment in advance you're effectively spreading the cost rather than needing to settle the bill in one lump sum, and with plenty of different policies available, you can be sure you're totally covered.

Health cash plans that offer cover for dental treatment, optical appointments and other everyday healthcare costs could be ideal, ensuring you won't need to jeopardise your health to make up for your festive spending. So, consider investing in suitable insurance, and you can enjoy the Christmas indulgence without sacrificing your health – personal or financial – in the process.

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Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.