Favourite Websites

In 2004 I wrote about here. After 13 years it is still my go-to resource for everything from saving money tips on insurance, utilities and groceries to ideas for cleaning, budgeting, cooking and much more.

This weeks “Noteworthy Website” is (Money Saving Expert ) run by Martin Lewis. (UK oriented) “It’s about saving money on anything and everything ? finding the best deals and beating the system. There are pejorative articles and guides detailing the best methods and products, plus the Chat Forum is a focus for tens of thousands of MoneySavers discussing the ultimate deals and helping each other save.”

There are guides and articles split into distinctive categories and individual topics. The forums are a well organised treasure trove of useful ideas and discussion.

Every week Martin sends out his “Martin Money Tips” email which contains summary information from the week’s action on the website and its forums, details of his new articles and any urgent announcements (Such as time limited special offers).

As then I still receive the weekly tips update. Sometimes I will go on the site the evening before the email to read the update as sometimes offers go quickly.

I have found the forum’s on this site to be a great place to find a bargain or to find out useful money saving advice from other users. I think the fact that this site has become so popular in the last few months, has given the forums such widespread usage that they are really useful in finding real bargains, which without such a focal-point of attention by so many people would just not happen elsewhere. I myself have picked up a bargain digital radio at 49% thanks to these forums that I would not have known about otherwise. I have also posted some of my own bargains, which may not have had widespread viewing by interested parties on my personal website, but on these forums people who have been interested in such bargains have been on an active lookout and found what they were looking for.

Personally I am no longer active on the forums as I switched to for bargains.

There is a lot more on this website which I do not have the time to do into detail on now. My suggestion is just to have a look for yourself. Don’t forget to check out the forums and to sign up for the weekly email newsletter. What have you got to lose!

All still true today. What are you waiting for?

TV Shows

UKTV Drama and The Bill

Just signed this petition. As a fan of TV show The Bill I’ve been enjoying watching the UKTV Drama ‘from the beginning’ run of the show which started a few months ago. Now they have decided to skip 9 series, which is just not on. Hoping to pester them to put the show on overnight or on demand.

Android Hardware

OnePlus 3T and OnePlus Customer Service

With my 5 year plan for my Nexus 4 coming to and soon I have kept an eye out on the latest handsets. Now that the Nexus line is discontinued, I am on the look out for something of similar value. The Nexus 4 was fantastic value at the time and I considered a bargain at £279. However, prices seemed to have jumped now, with the successor to Nexus, Google Pixel having starting price of £599.

I had been hearing lots of good things about the OnePlus 3t, so after months of on and of thinking I decided to give it a go. I’m not going to publish specs, photos or detailed analysis here because there is loads of that elsewhere. I was impressed, I found it a lovely phone, blazingly quick with a fast and accurate fingerprint sensor. It installed my apps so fast that my notifications could not keep up, by the time I was informed an app was successfully installed the next one was already downloaded and installing. This also was my first 4G phone and I am blessed with good coverage at home and work, so when I was off wifi it was impressive compared to my 3G connection on the Nexus 4.

However a few things came to light that I could not get over. The first was the size. I started going out without the phone, because it was just too big to be safe in my trouser pocket. I found myself keeping it in my backpack when out and about, and even there, it would not fit in the purpose built pocket. I also found that I was afraid of using it outside, just in case I dropped it. Now I can tell you that my Nexus 4 has been through the wars and has been dropped from my hands more than a few times when out and about. More to me being a clumsy What was the result: nothing. It still works and looks great. I got the impression if I dropped the OnePlus 3t it would shatter. Plus who wants to drop a £450+ device.

I sat down with the OnePlus 3t and it suddenly dawned on me. What exactly can this phone do that my old one could not? Yes it was faster but my Nexus 4 in reality was not exactly slow on opening apps. Yes the new phone had a fingerprint sensor, but was this really that an important a factor. I’d never had a problem with a pin or pattern before. My Nexus 4 battery is dying and is comparitively a dinasor at charging compared to the OnePlus 3t however I had adapted. I have a replacement battery ready to go in, I have a charger with me at all times, I have a wireless charger I place it on when I’m not using it at home and I have the option of carrying a portable battery with me.

I will make a point to say that I was impressed with OnePlus customer service. They offer a 15 day no hassle return on the phone and within 24 hours of me returning the phone via UPS from England to Poland not only had they received and processed the return but they had issued my refund. I was worried due to OnePlus receiving a lot of negative customer service comments but I could not be more happy with the service I received. If OnePlus ever release a smaller handset I will certainly be looking at them more positively.