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Navigating the Cost of Living: A Closer Look at Financial Well-Being in the UK

As we gear up for the General Election, financial concerns are at the forefront of many voters' minds. A recent survey by Indeed, highlighted on Workplace Wellbeing, reveals that more than 2 in 5 (42%) Brits are struggling to make ends meet. The data, gathered from over 2,000 respondents, underscores regional disparities and the significant impact of the cost of living crisis on the UK's workforce.

Regional Variations in Financial Comfort

Interestingly, those in the North East of England report feeling the most financially comfortable, with less than a third (32%) struggling. In stark contrast, nearly half (48%) of respondents in Scotland find their paycheck insufficient to cover their expenses. This regional divide highlights the varying economic pressures across the UK.

Cost of Living: A Major Concern for Voters

The survey indicates that the cost of living is a primary concern for nearly half (47%) of the population, causing widespread anxiety about financial stability. Many believe that addressing this issue should be a top priority for the incoming government, with 49% advocating for measures to reduce costs and 39% calling for wage adjustments to align with living expenses.

Stagnant Wages and Inflation Woes

Since the onset of the cost of living crisis in 2021, nearly 1 in 5 Brits have seen no change in their salary, with 15% experiencing a decrease in pay. Although the average pay rise for those who received one stands at 3%, it falls short of the peak inflation rate of 11.1% in October 2022. Despite a recent decline in inflation to 2%, a significant 60% of respondents report feeling no better off.

Generational Struggles and Additional Income

Millennials, aged 27-42, are particularly impacted, with over half (52%) finding it difficult to make ends meet on their current salary. To cope, nearly half (47%) have turned to second jobs or side hustles, a strategy also adopted by 42% of Gen Z respondents (16-26) compared to 34% of the general population. Rising transport costs have also driven more millennials to work from home (44% vs. 30% overall).

Perceptions of Wealth and Financial Security

In today's economic climate, UK voters consider an individual income of £96,000 necessary to be deemed wealthy, with households needing a combined income of £115,500. Notably, 16% believe a household income of over £200,000 is required to achieve this status. Expectations increase with higher income brackets, as households earning above £100,000 feel that £164,500 is needed to be 'well-off'.

For a comfortable standard of living, Brits estimate an individual income of £38,130 is necessary, slightly above the average UK salary of £35,822. These figures reflect the heightened financial pressures faced by many and underscore the critical need for policies that address wage growth and cost of living challenges.

As the election approaches, these financial insights provide a crucial backdrop to the decisions voters will make, highlighting the importance of economic stability and support for all regions and generations.

Published 25/06/2024

Making the Most of Your Summer with Plane Saver

As we approach the summer season, it’s the perfect time to reassess your financial plans and make sure you’re on track to achieve your goals.

Budgeting Tips for Summer

Managing your finances during the summer months is crucial for staying on track with your financial goals. Here are five top tips to help you budget effectively:

  • Plan Ahead: Set a budget for summer expenses, including holidays, outings, and leisure activities. Your Summer budget is likely to increase if you have lots of things planned so remember to adjust your outgoings on your budget to reflect this.
  • Track Your Spending: Use our online banking tools to monitor your expenses and identify areas where you can save. You could use apps like Snoop or even a good old-fashioned pen & paper! However you choose to do it, make sure you stay on top of it.
  • Take Advantage of Discounts: As a Plane Saver member, explore our exclusive lifestyle discounts to save on everyday purchases. Our member benefits platform has thousands of offers and discounts you can use to save money on summer activities as well as everyday purchases.
  • Review and Adjust: Regularly review your budget and make adjustments as needed to stay within your financial limits. You could try planning an hour a week to sit down and go through your budget and what you have spent so far.
  • Save Automatically: Set up automated transfers to your savings account to build a safety net for unexpected expenses. That could be using our payroll deduction service or by setting up a Direct Debit. Remember to save on the day you get paid!

Whether planning a holiday, home improvements, or simply boosting your savings, Plane Saver is here to help with our range of financial products designed to suit your needs.

Personal Loans:

Our Personal Loans offer up to £25,000 with competitive APR starting from just 7.9%. Whether you're funding a dream vacation or consolidating debt, our loans come with no hidden fees, no early repayment penalties, and free Loan Protection up to £10,000. Plus, interest is calculated on the reducing balance, saving you money over time. Before you apply for a loan, you can contact us for a quote and decide if it is the right option for you!

Cash ISA:

For tax-efficient savings, consider our Cash ISA. With a minimum balance of £1, instant access, and a projected dividend of 5%, it’s an ideal option for growing your savings while maintaining flexibility. Enjoy online account management, FSCS protection up to £85,000, and exclusive lifestyle discounts.

Junior Cash ISA

Prepare for your child’s future with our Junior Cash ISA, offering locked tax-free savings with a projected annual dividend rate of 3.9%. Available for children under 18, this account allows seamless transfers and withdrawals, making it easy for parents to save up to £9,000 annually towards their child’s future.

Stay Connected with Plane Saver

Remember, Plane Saver isn’t just about financial products—we’re committed to your long-term financial well-being. Whether you’re saving for a rainy day or planning for a major purchase, our team is here to support you every step of the way. Follow us on Instagram for all the latest tips.

Not a member yet? - Join Us Today

Ready to take control of your finances this summer? CLICK HERE to become a member to start benefiting from our range of financial solutions. At Plane Saver, we’re more than just a credit union—we’re your partner in securing a brighter financial future!

Published 18/06/2024

Vice Chair at Plane Saver Credit Union, Appointed as MBE

Plane Saver Credit Union is delighted to announce that their Vice Chair of the Board, Joy Maitland, has been appointed to the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her services to business and charity. This prestigious honour recognises Joy’s unwavering dedication and outstanding contributions to the community.

Joy Maitland, a business psychologist with extensive senior-level corporate management experience, has been a vital part of Plane Saver for the past eight years. With fellowships from the Institute of Directors (IoD), the Institute of Leadership (IoL), and the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), Joy brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to our organisation. She is also an award-winning Executive Coach and the author of ‘From Alpha to Zen: Leadership for a Brave New World.’

Ian Atkins, Chair of Plane Saver’s Board of Directors, expressed his admiration for Joy’s remarkable achievements:

"Joy Maitland's appointment to the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, M.B.E., for Services to Business and to Charity, is a wonderful testament to the dedication with which she applies herself to everything she does. Whether it is in her business or working with her Plane Saver Credit Union colleagues, she adheres to and lives by her motto: ‘Be the Difference. Make the Difference.’ It is no exaggeration to say that The Board and all PSCU employees have benefited enormously from the patience and wisdom that she has applied over the past eight years and ten months. I am personally proud to have met Joy and to have had the opportunity to work with such a wonderful individual who inspires me by living her ideals.’’

Gary Lewis, CEO of Plane Saver, also shared his congratulations:

"We are all incredibly proud of Joy’s appointment as an MBE. Her dedication and commitment to excellence have made a significant impact on our organisation. Joy’s innovative leadership techniques and her passion for continuous improvement have not only benefited our Board but also enriched the entire Plane Saver community. It is a delight to work alongside someone who truly embodies the spirit of our mission and values. Congratulations, Joy, on this well-deserved honour."

Founded in 1993 by British Airways engineers, Plane Saver has grown to become one of the largest credit unions in the UK, serving over 27,000 members. Their mission is to provide flexible savings and affordable loans while maintaining personalised service and a human touch. Joy’s contributions have been instrumental in guiding the Credit Union toward achieving financial well-being for its members and fostering a supportive community.

Joy Maitland expressed her gratitude and reflections on receiving the MBE:

"I am extremely grateful and privileged to receive this appointment to the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE). This honour is not just a reflection of my work but a celebration of the collective impact we make every day. I look forward to continuing our journey together, striving for excellence and making a meaningful difference."

Joy Maitland’s recognition as an MBE is a testament to her exceptional dedication and service. Her motto, “Be the Difference. Make the Difference,” continues to inspire us all. The Plane Saver team are happy to be celebrating her invaluable contributions to Plane Saver and beyond.

Published 17/06/2024

Navigating Persistent Debt: A Closer Look at Credit Card Strategies

In the complex world of personal finance, persistent debt can be a silent menace, quietly accumulating and hindering financial progress. Defined by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) as a situation where interest, fees, and charges exceed the amount paid off over 18 months or more, persistent debt is a challenge faced by many credit and store card holders. In this blog post, we'll explore what persistent debt entails, why it matters, and practical strategies to escape its grip.

Understanding Persistent Debt

Persistent debt occurs when the cumulative interest, fees, and charges surpass the payments made towards the principal amount borrowed. This typically happens when individuals make only the minimum payment or slightly more, leading to a prolonged repayment period. Lenders often notify borrowers about their persistent debt status through letters, urging them to take action to avoid long-term financial consequences.

The Cost of Minimum Payments

Making only the minimum payment may seem like a convenient option, but it comes with a high financial cost. Let's consider an example based on a £3,000 credit card balance with an effective interest rate of 24%. Paying the minimum amount would take a staggering 28 years and 3 months to repay, resulting in £5,214 in interest and a total payment of £8,214. This emphasises the importance of seeking alternatives to break free from persistent debt.

Strategies to Reduce Debt

  • Pay More Than the Minimum:
    • Aim to pay more than the minimum amount stipulated on your credit card statement.
    • Even modest additional payments can significantly reduce the overall balance and interest paid over time.
  • Understand the Impact of Fixed Payments:
    • Making fixed payments, such as £84 each month, can speed up the repayment process.
    • In the example provided, paying a fixed amount reduces the repayment time to 4 years and 10 months, with £1,866 in interest and a total payment of £4,866.
  • Optimise Payments to Minimise Costs:
    • Paying a little more, such as £124 each month, further accelerates the debt clearance.
    • This approach results in repaying the balance in 2 years and 9 months, with only £981 in interest and a total payment of £3,981.
  • Consider Debt Consolidation
    • Explore options like debt consolidation to streamline payments and potentially secure a lower interest rate.
  • Budgeting and Financial Planning
    • Develop a realistic budget to allocate funds for debt repayment and avoid accumulating additional charges.

By understanding the implications of persistent debt and adopting strategies like paying more than the minimum, fixing payments, and optimising repayments, you can work to regain control of your credit card finances. Most importantly, if your credit card provider contacts you about persistent debt, reach out to them and discuss how they can help you.

If you have a Plane Saver loan and you want to discuss your options, you can contact our team on 0208 607 5020.


Unlocking financial well-being: The power of saving a Credit Union

In an ever-changing economic landscape, achieving financial well-being is an ongoing quest for many individuals. It's not just about the figures in your bank account; it's about finding a balance between financial security, achieving life goals, and being prepared for unexpected challenges. Credit unions play a pivotal role in this pursuit, offering a pathway to financial well-being through effective saving strategies.

Understanding Financial Well-Being

Financial well-being extends beyond the accumulation of wealth. It aims to help people feel more confident and secure in managing their financial present and future. This state of well-being involves a balance between present needs, future aspirations, and the ability to navigate unforeseen financial circumstances.

The Collective Mission of Credit Unions

Credit unions, collectively, are member-owned financial cooperatives that focus on serving their members' financial needs. They operate with the fundamental goal of enhancing the financial well-being of their members. Their structure allows for a people-first approach, where profits take a backseat to the members' interests. This fosters trust, community, and a sense of belonging, as decisions are made to benefit the members directly.

How Saving with a Credit Union Nurtures Financial Well-Being

1. Access to Diverse Savings Accounts: Credit unions offer a variety of savings accounts that cater to different member needs. From emergency funds to long-term savings goals, these accounts provide the tools necessary for effective and secure savings.

2. Competitive Rates and Member Benefits: Members of credit unions often enjoy competitive rates and exclusive benefits. This is because credit unions, like Plane Saver, focus on the well-being of their members, translating into better rates and added advantages compared to conventional banks.

3. Access to Affordable Loans and Financial Education: Credit unions, including Plane Saver and others, extend fair and affordable loans to their members. This accessibility to credit without high rates or hidden charges aids in achieving financial goals. Additionally, credit unions often provide valuable financial education and guidance, empowering members to make informed decisions about their money.

Why Credit Unions, including Plane Saver, Stand Out

1. Commitment to Integrity: Credit unions operate with integrity, acting transparently and always seeking out the best products and solutions for their members.

2. Humanity in Approach: Respect and dignity are foundational to the credit union experience. Members are treated with warmth, consideration, and respect, fostering a personal touch in the services offered.

3. Embracing Diversity: Diversity in talent and ideas is crucial for innovation and inclusivity. Credit unions actively seek diverse skill sets and talent to better serve their members and the community.

Joining Plane Saver and the Credit Union Movement

Embracing the journey towards financial well-being often involves joining a credit union. Organisations like Plane Saver exemplify the values of credit unions, providing a pathway to financial security and prosperity through effective savings and a strong sense of community. By joining a credit union, individuals not only access financial services but become part of a community dedicated to their financial well-being.

Embrace the collective strength of credit unions and join Plane Saver or a local credit union to begin the journey towards a more secure financial future.


​Unlocking Your Financial Potential: Savings Challenges and More with Plane Saver Credit Union

Welcome to the world of smart savings! At Plane Saver Credit Union, we understand that managing your finances is a serious matter, but that doesn't mean we can't make it a bit more fun and rewarding. Our warm and empathetic approach ensures that as you embark on your journey towards financial security, you'll have a reliable companion by your side.

Embrace the Savings Challenge

Saving money doesn't have to be a daunting task. In fact, we've curated a selection of savings challenges that not only make the process exciting but also bring you closer to your financial goals:

1. The £1 Challenge: Save £365 a Year

Starting small can lead to big results. Our £1 challenge encourages you to save just £1 every day. By the end of an average year, you'll have tucked away an impressive £365. It's an ideal method for those looking to maintain a consistent savings habit alongside their regular financial routine.

2. The 1p Challenge: Save £667.95

Taking a gradual approach, the 1p challenge is a popular choice. Begin with saving just 1p on the first day and increase the amount you save by a penny each day. By the end of the year, you'll have amassed £667.95—a significant boost to your savings.

3. The £1,500 Challenge: A High-Stakes Savings Journey

For those seeking a challenge that yields substantial rewards, the £1,500 challenge might be your calling. This method involves gradually increasing your daily savings over a week, then resetting the following week. By committing to saving £28 each week, you'll end up with an impressive £1,456 by the end of the year.

4. The 52-Week Saving Challenge: A Steady Approach

Savings can be gradual, too. With the 52-week challenge, you set aside an amount corresponding to the week of the year. Week one, you save £1. Week 52, you save £52. A simple yet effective strategy to build up your financial cushion.

5. The 26-Week Saving Challenge: Ideal for Fortnightly Incomes

Adapting the 52-week challenge, the 26-week challenge is perfect for those who get paid every two weeks. While the end result matches the 52-week challenge, it allows for a more spread-out savings approach, making it easier to manage.

6. The Monthly Savings Challenge: Consistency Wins

Flexibility meets consistency with the monthly savings challenge. Begin with £10 and increase the amount by multiplying it with the corresponding month. By year-end, you'll have saved £780—a testament to the power of steady efforts.

7. The Fiver Challenge: Aim High

The Fiver Challenge is our most ambitious option, perfect for those with big savings goals. Similar to the 52-week challenge, this approach involves increasing savings in multiples of £5, leading to a potential £7,000 boost.

8. The No Spend Challenge: A Different Kind of Saving

Sometimes, the best way to save is by not spending. Our no-spend challenge encourages you to cut out unnecessary expenses for a set period. You'll be surprised how much you can save by making mindful choices.

Membership Benefits You Deserve

As a proud member of Plane Saver Credit Union, you gain access to a world of benefits designed to empower your financial journey:

  • Online Account Management: Seamlessly manage your savings with our user-friendly online platform.
  • FREE Life Savings Protection: Enjoy peace of mind with up to £10,000 in life savings protection.
  • Flexible Deposit Options: Deposit funds through Payroll, Direct Debit, or Standing Order, tailored to your convenience.
  • FSCS Protection: Your savings are safeguarded for up to £85,000, providing you with financial security.
  • Discounted Gym Membership: Partnering with The Gym Group, our members enjoy exclusive gym membership discounts.

Ready to Begin?

At Plane Saver Credit Union, we believe in combining informative guidance with uncomplicated guidance. Our goal is to help you achieve financial resilience while embracing a journey that suits your lifestyle and needs.

Ready to start saving? Why not consider opening our instant access Cash ISA? With a projected dividend of 4.1%, you'll be making your money work for you in no time. Learn more about our Cash ISA account here.

Don't miss out on the world of benefits that come with being a Plane Saver member. Apply for membership now and unlock a world of financial possibilities.

Remember, finance may be a serious business, but with Plane Saver Credit Union, it's also about empowerment, growth, and achieving your dreams. Join us on this exciting journey towards financial freedom—because your goals matter.

Note: The information provided in this article is for educational purposes only and is not financial advice. Please consult with a financial professional before making any significant financial decisions.


Last-minute holidays

Life is unpredictable. Especially this year, it is even more difficult to plan as the cost of living continues to rise. However, if you need a well-deserved break but are worried about the impact on your wallet, fret not! We've got you covered!

In this blog, we'll delve into the art of booking last-minute holidays on a budget, so you can embark on an incredible adventure without breaking the bank. Whether you're dreaming of exotic destinations abroad or exploring hidden gems within the UK, we have some fantastic tips to help you secure the best deals and create unforgettable memories. Let's dive in!

Flexibility is Key:

When booking a last-minute holiday, being flexible with your travel dates is paramount. Look for midweek departures and returns as they tend to be cheaper than weekends. Avoid peak travel seasons, school holidays, and major events, as they usually come with inflated prices. By keeping your schedule open, you increase your chances of finding great deals.

Embrace the Power of Comparison:

Utilise online travel platforms and compare prices across multiple websites to find the best offers. Websites like Skyscanner, Kayak, and Momondo are excellent resources for flight comparisons, while and Airbnb can help you score affordable accommodations. Don't forget to check the official airline and hotel websites, as they sometimes offer exclusive deals and promotions.

Stay Open to Unconventional Destinations:

Consider exploring lesser-known destinations that might not be on everyone's radar. These hidden gems can offer unique experiences and come with more affordable price tags. With last-minute deals, you might just stumble upon an incredible adventure in a place you never considered before!

Travel Abroad

All-Inclusive Packages: Look for all-inclusive holiday packages, which often bundle flights, accommodations, meals, and even some activities. These packages can provide significant savings, especially when booked last minute.

Standby and Charter Flights: Keep an eye out for standby flights or charter flights that are sometimes available at lower prices. Airlines occasionally have unsold seats that they offer at discounted rates, providing an excellent opportunity for last-minute travellers.

Flexible Accommodations: Opt for accommodations like hostels, guesthouses, or vacation rentals, which can be more budget-friendly than traditional hotels. Websites such as Hostelworld and have filters that allow you to search for affordable accommodations.

Explore the UK

Off-Peak Adventures: Discover the beauty of the United Kingdom by visiting popular destinations during off-peak seasons. Not only will you enjoy fewer crowds, but you'll also find more affordable rates on accommodations and attractions.

Last-Minute Hotel Deals: Hotels often have last-minute cancellations, which means they may release discounted rooms closer to the date. Keep an eye on hotel booking websites or give them a call directly to inquire about any last-minute availability.

Camping and Glamping: If you're up for an adventure, camping or glamping can be an incredibly cost-effective and fun way to explore the UK. Pack your tent or rent a pre-set campsite and immerse yourself in the breathtaking landscapes of national parks and coastal regions.

Bonus Tips

Sign up for Travel Alerts: Subscribe to newsletters and travel alerts from airlines, hotels, and travel agencies to stay informed about flash sales and last-minute offers.

Clear Your Cookies: Some travel websites track your visits and may increase prices if they detect frequent searches. Clear your browser cookies or search for flights and accommodations in incognito mode for the best rates.

Consider Package Deals: Look for bundled deals that include both flights and accommodations. These packages often provide better rates than booking each component separately.

So, who says you need months of planning to embark on an unforgettable holiday? With these valuable tips, you can confidently book last-minute getaways without straining your budget. Remember to remain flexible, embrace unconventional destinations, and make use of comparison websites to secure the best deals on flights and accommodations. Whether you choose to travel abroad or explore the wonders of the UK, the thrill of an adventure awaits you. So, start packing and get ready for an incredible journey!

Be aware of the Scammers Posing as Energy Bill Support Scheme

We are aware that members of the public have reported receiving messages requesting their bank details to provide financial support for energy bills. Please be aware that the first instalment was added automatically to bills on the 1st of October; therefore, there is no need to disclose ANY bank details.

According to the Energy Saving Trust, ‘’you don’t need to contact your supplier, as all households with a domestic electricity connection will be automatically given the discount. However, if you haven’t received the first instalment by the end of October 2022, you should get in touch with your energy supplier. You will never be asked for your bank details.’’

Citizens Advice also published a helpful guide and checklist for identifying scammers and potentially harmful text/emails.

Half Term and Halloween on a budget!

Half term and Halloween entertainment can be a scary thought when the current cost of living is looming over us all. However, spending time with your family and celebrating the spooky season doesn’t have to cost the earth!

Here are our top tips on how to stay within your budget this Autumn:

Days Out

Let’s face it, nothing beats a fun day out during half term, but attractions can sometimes come at a cost. Before you book anything, check websites such as Groupon or Days Out With The Kids - you might find a discounted ticket or two! We also found this list of free days out in October on Magic Freebies. Don’t forget to take a packed lunch and save on expensive restaurants and cafés.


Most supermarkets will have offers on pumpkins, decorations and outfits for the kids as well as treats for your scary visitors but, our two favourites this year have to be ASDA and Home Bargains. Not only do they have a range of budget friendly games, decorations, and treats, but the selection of costumes is also varied.

For a fun family day out, you might be able to find a local pumpkin picking patch or farm. If you do, check the prices as they could be cheaper than store bought. It’s also a good way to support a local business.

On the day, why not have a Halloween hunt? This is such an easy and cost-effective way to keep the kids busy. All you need is some card and some spooky things to hide. Write the clues and the card and let the kids have fun finding all the items. Make sure you have a prize at the end for the winner.

And of course, there’s always family film night to keep everyone entertained. Warm up the popcorn, snuggles on the sofa and get set for a cinema style night in. Here’s a list of family friendly Halloween films courtesy of Good Housekeeping.

Shopping for the new term

The winter school term will soon be upon us and if your child’s school kit needs refreshing, why not check out some of the uniforms available instore and online?

Retailers such as Sainsbury’s, ASDA, Matalan & Next offer their own range of school wear. If its sportswear you need then try MandM Direct who are currently offering up to 60% off in their ‘School Shop’.

Keeping the bills down

It’s on everyone’s mind right now – the cost of living.

First things first; if you haven’t already you should check what support is available from your energy supplier. We mentioned in our member newsletter recently what support is available, but you can also read more about this by clicking HERE.

There are also plenty of little changes you can make around your home to become more energy-efficient and keep your bills to a minimum.

These include:

  • Setting your washing machine to a lower temperature
  • Switching to LED or battery-operated lighting
  • Remembering to turn mains powered lights off
  • Utilising the microwave instead of the oven
  • Not overfilling the kettle
  • Taking shorter showers
  • Not leaving the heating on all day
  • Purchase fuel from a supermarket station

Whatever you do this Halloween or Half Term, we wish all our members and their families a happy and safe one!

Is a Debt Consolidation loan right for you?

As the UK continues to struggle with the ongoing cost-of-living crisis, some institutions are advising UK residents to seek financial assistance. With many people now considering a debt consolidation loan, the question is: is it right for you?

According to financial capability charity The Money Charity, the total unsecured debt per UK adult in February 2022 was £3,771, while the average total debt per UK household was £63,803.

With the cost of living crisis also cranking up the financial pressure facing UK households to near unbearable levels, news that inflation has risen for a ninth consecutive month to 9.4% is not what anybody was hoping to hear. It does, however, send a clear message to us all: there's never been a more important time to keep a close eye on your money and make sure your debts are properly managed.

Echoing that sentiment are the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Government-approved online advice service MoneyHelper, both of whom are recommending that UK residents should actively seek help if they're struggling financially. As a result, many people are considering a debt consolidation loan, one of the most effective ways of dealing with debt.

So what exactly are debt consolidation loans and what benefits do they offer?

What is a debt consolidation loan?

A debt consolidation loan is a loan taken out by an individual in order to pay off their existing debts. The individual uses the money from the debt consolidation loan to pay off the people or companies to whom they owe money, then repays the loan in monthly instalments.

Debt consolidation loans can be used to pay off different types of debt, such as overdrafts, credit cards, personal loans or store cards.

Why do I need one?

Taking out a debt consolidation loan is an effective way of taking back control of your finances as it allows you to immediately pay off all your debts and leaves you responsible for just one repayment per month.

When you have several lenders to repay each month, it can be easy to forget to make a payment, especially if the repayments are for different amounts and due on different dates. Needless to say, this makes budgeting and general money management much more difficult.

Because bigger loans often come with lower interest rates, debt consolidation loans can also lower your monthly repayment amount, reducing your outgoings. The repayments can also be spread over a period of time that is more suitable for you, which could potentially lower your monthly repayments too.

What if I'm too embarrassed to ask for help?

With debt, a serious issue that affects many households in the UK, taking out a debt consolidation loan seems like the obvious thing to do. Unfortunately, another issue is preventing people from doing so - embarrassment.

According to the FCA, embarrassment causes some 52% of borrowers facing financial hardship to wait more than one month before seeking help, with 53% of these regretting not doing so sooner and feelings of regret increasing exponentially the longer they wait.

While it is perfectly understandable to not want to discuss your finances if you are experiencing debt, it is important to recognise that, with the cost-of-living crisis dragging on, the stigma attached to being financially unstable is quickly disappearing as more and more people find themselves in the same boat. It is also worth remembering that financial help is available from reputable lenders to anyone who needs it, with no judgement attached.

Bring your debts under control with a Plane Saver loan.

At Plane Saver, our Debt Consolidation loans enable you to borrow as much as £25,000 with rates starting from as little as 3.4% APR, allowing you to consolidate any existing loan, credit card, or overdraft into one monthly repayment. We'll even repay your lenders directly so you don't have to.

With no hidden fees or charges, no early repayment penalties and free loan protection of up to £10,000, one of our Debt Consolidation loans could help you improve your financial well-being today. For more information, click here.

Saving for your child's future

With economic uncertainty gripping the UK, saving for your child's future is more important than ever. Here's how to start.

Putting money aside for your children is something most parents want to do as it guarantees them a degree of financial independence once they become an adult. Depending on how much you are able to save, the nest egg can be used as a deposit for a house or a car, reducing the financial pressure they are likely to face.

But with the cost of living crisis showing no signs of stopping, it may be tempting to wait until the economy starts to improve. However, saving for your child's future doesn't need to be expensive; the key is to save regularly, then sit back and watch the money build up over time. For example, if one person saves one pound a week from when a child is born until it turns 18, they will earn £936. If two people contribute to the account, each saving £2 per week, the total will rise to £3,744. For those eager to save larger amounts, the easiest way to go about it is with a junior ISA.

What is a junior ISA?

Junior ISAs allow you to save a certain amount each year for your child and are available from many credit unions, building societies and banks. They are tax-free savings accounts that can be opened by a child's parents or guardians, who manage the account until the child turns 16. However, the child cannot access their money before the age of 18.

Once an account has been set up, anyone can pay money into it but the total amount paid in cannot exceed a certain limit; for the 2022-2023 tax year, the maximum amount that can be paid in is £9,000.

There are two types of Junior ISA: cash ISAs and stocks and shares ISAs. With Cash ISAs, you don't pay tax on interest on the cash you save; with a stocks and shares ISA, your cash is invested and you don't pay tax on any capital growth or dividends you receive.

What are Junior Saver accounts?

Another option for people who want to save money for their child's future are Junior Saver accounts.

Junior Savers enable you to save for your children straight from your pay via Payroll or Direct Debit, with whatever you pay into the account earning an annual dividend.

Unlike ISAs, there are no limits on the amount that can be paid into a Junior Saver account - just a minimum deposit of £5 per month - making it a great way to save small or large amounts.

Plane Saver can help you save for your child's future, today.

At Plane Saver, anyone with one of our Junior Saver accounts also receives free life savings protection of up to £10,000 and Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) Protection of up to £85,000.

To set up a Junior Saver account, click here. For more information, click here

How to Save Energy at Home.

With the cost of living on the rise, we've rounded up some advice on how to reduce your energy usage and keep your bills low.

The last month has been dominated by talk about the energy price cap increasing by 54% and the impact this will have on the millions of Brits whose household bills are set to rise by around £700 over the next calendar year as a result.

Designed to ensure customers aren't overcharged for their energy, the price cap is rising because the price of wholesale gas has increased four-fold over the last year. Because energy companies simply can't afford to supply gas for less than they have paid for it, customers are now having to pay more for it too.

Under normal circumstances, customers could simply shop around for a cheaper deal from a different supplier. Unfortunately, every energy company is in the same boat, so no cheaper deals are available.

So what should I do?

The best thing most people can do is stay on a capped tariff or move to one as soon as their current deal comes to an end. In the meantime, there are plenty of little changes you can make in your everyday life to become more energy-efficient and keep your bills to a minimum.

These include:

Setting your washing machine to a lower temperature

Programming your machine to wash at 30 degrees and no higher will reduce the amount of energy your washing machine uses by approximately 40% per year. Wait until you have enough washing to do a full load before turning it on too - doing a full cycle with the drum half-empty is a waste of water.

Switching to LEDs

Although they're slightly more expensive, LED lights last approximately 40-times longer than regular light bulbs and are around 90% more energy-efficient, so switching to them is a great way to save money in the long term.

Turning lights off

Speaking of lights, getting into the habit of turning yours off every time you leave a room unattended - and encouraging your family to do the same - will save you a surprising amount of energy each month.

Utilising the microwave

Microwaves cook food much faster than ovens or grills and don't require preheating, so use yours as much as possible and your energy usage will reduce dramatically.

Not overfilling the kettle

Only boiling the exact amount of water you need will knock around £11 a year off your electricity bill.

Taking shorter showers

Reducing the amount of time you spend in the shower to four minutes per person, per day, could save a typical household £65 a year on their energy bills.

Not leaving the heating on

As we head into summer, most people will find themselves using their heating less but if you do need to use it, use timers and thermostats to make sure you're only heating your house when absolutely necessary - it will save the average household approximately £70 per year.

How Plane Saver can help

If you're struggling with the cost of living, don't panic - help is available. We offer a range of savings accounts and affordable loans that can help ensure your energy bills are always paid on time. Click here for more information.

The 2022 Mini-budget - What Does It Mean For Me?

Now the dust has settled on last week's Spring Statement, we evaluate the impact it is likely to have on ordinary households.

Ever since Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak announced his mini-budget last Wednesday, people have been trying to work out how it will affect them over the coming months.

We've taken a look at the main talking points from Mr Sunak's Statement to help our members understand just what they mean for them.

Energy bills

With so much having been made about the sky-rocketing cost of energy recently and with the energy price cap set to rise significantly on April 1st, many people were hoping that measures designed to reduce energy bills would be announced in the mini-budget.

However, no such help was forthcoming. Instead of helping families faced with the prospect of having to choose between eating or heating, the Chancellor only announced that VAT would be scrapped on energy-efficient measures like solar panels and heat pumps. Although energy efficiency is undoubtedly important, this new measure does nothing to support the vast majority of families and it's hard not to feel like this was a missed opportunity to offer some support to those who need it most.

The cost of fuel

Fuel prices have been reduced by 5p per litre, making the cost of filling a 55-litre family car approximately £3 cheaper, equating to an annual saving of around £100 for the average car driver. The reduction is effective immediately and will last until next March.

Unfortunately, with the recent rises in fuel prices, this reduction merely brings the costs back to the levels they were at last year and, as such, offers little relief for motorists.

National Insurance and income tax

Good news - the national insurance contribution threshold has been raised, allowing workers to earn £12,750 before they have to pay any income tax or national insurance. This means anyone earning around £15,000 will be circa £330 better off per year. Furthermore, from 2024, the basic rate of income tax will be cut from 20% to 19%.

Although in an ideal world the income tax cut would come into effect sooner, the raising of the NI threshold is great news for workers earning less than £40,000 per year.

Household Support Fund

Designed to support people recovering from the financial impact of the pandemic deal with rising utilities, food and energy bills, the Household Support Fund has been given a £500m injection, meaning £1bn is now available to help the UK's most financially vulnerable households - another welcome announcement.

For information on how to apply, click here.


Despite the ongoing cost-of-living crisis, no additional support was announced for those on universal credit.


While there were some crumbs of comfort in the Spring Statement, the ever-increasing cost of living means it's impossible to get excited about it as it simply does not offer enough financial help or support to those who need it most.

Consequently, our advice is to continue trying to reduce your outgoings wherever possible and shop around for the best deals on essentials. A recent report from consumer champion Which? found that Lidl currently offers the best value for money on groceries so if you live near a branch, it's worth getting as much of your weekly shop from there as possible. If you are struggling with rising bills, one of our affordable loans or savings accounts could help you get your finances back on track. For more information, click here.

New plate, new car?

With new plates now available, now is the perfect time to get a great deal on a second-hand car.

Buying a Used Car

Savvy motorists know that the best time to pick up a used car at a bargain price is around the time new licence plates are released - i.e. right now!

If you're in the market for some second-hand wheels, our guide to buying a used car is here to help ensure you get maximum value for money.

Take advantage of new plates being released

When new plates are released - as they were this week, on March 1st - some people just can't wait to get their hands on one and will often part-exchange their old cars to do so. The result of this is dealers across the UK suddenly find their lots full of cars they want to sell asap. With supply outstripping demand, dealers are more likely to sell at a lower price, which means now is a great opportunity for you to head over and get haggling.

Check the car's history

Once you've chosen a used car, you need to make sure it's not going to break down within a couple of weeks and land you with a hefty repair bill and the best way to do that is to check its service book.

Service books keep a record of when a car was last serviced, how many miles it's done and its MOT status, among other things. If the tax has long since expired or the MOT isn't current, find out why before completing the purchase. If the dealer can't give you a satisfactory reason, play it safe and walk away - the car may have been off the road for an extended period due to ongoing problems. Don't let them become YOUR problems!

Be aware of dealers' sales quotas

Car dealers have sales targets to hit to earn bonuses and, as luck would have it, the end of their first sales quarter is at the end of March (the other sales quarters end in June, September and December). As their sales deadline approaches, dealers can be more open to negotiating to sell the last few cars that will take them past their target. If you're not in a rush to buy a new car, waiting until the end of the month could allow you to make a significant saving.

Don't pay for unnecessary trim

Trim levels are different versions of the same car. If, for example, you want to buy a Ford Focus, you'll usually have the option to buy a version with standard trim (which doesn't have many extras), one with a fancier trim (which has some extras) and one with a fancy trim (which has lots of extras).

When buying a new car, it can be all too easy to get carried away with the salesperson's talk of heated seats, parking sensors and monitors in the headrests. But as you can probably guess, the more extras you want, the more expensive the car will be so, if you're on a strict budget, stick to the basic trim.

How Plane Saver can help

With a Plane Saver Car Loan, you could borrow between £1,000 and £25,000 to help you buy a new car or just cover the deposit. For more information, click here.

Storm support for members

One way or another, you have probably seen or felt the impact of the recent weather. With Storm Dudley, Eunice, and Franklyn wreaking havoc across the country, we know many of our members may be left with damages to sort out.

With this in mind, we have pledged a pot of £1m specifically to help our members with the recovery after the storms. Members can apply to borrow from us to cover expenses related to storm damage, including repairs and extensive clean-up.

Gurminder Bhagrath, Head of Operations said ''We would encourage our members to check if they are able to make a claim with their insurance companies for storm damage. However, we recognise that in some cases our members may have to cover the costs themselves. As a Credit Union, it is important to us that our members know we are here to support them if they need it.''

Members can apply for an Emergency Loan to cover the cost of small damages or one of our Personal Loans for larger damages.

Log into your online banking or the mobile app to apply.

Get Your Finances Fit For 2022

Now is the perfect time to review your finances and see if you could make any improvements. To help you out, we've come up with some hints and tips to get your finances fighting fit for 2022.

Monitor where your money goes

Most people think nothing of having numerous direct debits, standing orders, and subscriptions linked to their bank accounts but forgetting to cancel those you no longer need puts an unnecessary strain on your finances. Start 2022 by going through your bank statements and making sure you're not still paying for anything you no longer use.

Create a budget

Writing down a budget is one of the most effective ways to monitor exactly how your money comes in and goes out. There are lots of budget planners available online but this one from Money Saving Expert will help you manage your money, fast. It may also be worth researching the different budgeting apps that are out there too.

Try to avoid adverts

We all like to treat ourselves to a new purchase every now and then but spending more than you can afford can quickly land you in financial trouble. To curtail your spending, unsubscribe yourself from every retailer's email list in your inbox - if you make it harder for them to contact you, you'll reduce your exposure to adverts and decrease the chances of you making purchases you don't really need.

Don't overspend on your mobile bill

With data having overtaken the number of text messages you send and the duration of phone calls you make as the main expenditure on a monthly phone contract, overspending on your mobile bill has never been easier. If you frequently use more data than you prepay for, adjust your contract by contacting your supplier and adding extra data to your tariff. By eliminating excess charges, you could make a significant monthly saving almost instantly.

Find out what benefits you're entitled to

Many of us don't know about all the financial benefits that are available to UK citizens but there are more than you think and, what's more, you may be entitled to some you didn't even know existed.

Check out to find out if you're missing out on any and, if you are, how to claim them.

Ensure your taxes are in order

The last thing your finances need is a hefty and unexpected bill from HMRC because you're on the wrong tax code, so get your latest payslip, P60 or a pension advice slip and visit to make sure you're not under (or over) paying. Let HMRC know immediately if you are.

How Plane Saver can help

Our credit union offers a range of savings accounts and affordable loans to help you manage your finances. To find out more and for answers to some of the most commonly asked financial questions, click here.

Money Saving Tips For 2022

With the Covid-19 situation continuing to impact a significant number of households' finances, you'd be forgiven for feeling stressed about money right now. To try and reduce our members' anxiety around Christmas and the new year, we've come up with some money-saving tips to help keep your bank balance out of the red.

Take advantage of money-saving apps

Technology has many uses and one of the best is the access it provides to financial advice. These money-saving apps will help you to budget, save and manage your money quickly and conveniently.

Make sure you're not paying too much for your mobile phone

Many of us have smartphones these days, with most of the money we spend on them going towards the cost of data, rather than texts and minutes. If you regularly use more data than you pay for, you'll soon find yourself staring at a large and unnecessary bill as a result of all the excess charges.

To ensure you're only using what you pay for, contact your supplier and add extra data to your tariff. Over the course of a year, this simple move could save you hundreds of pounds.

Reduce food waste

Creating meal plans for the upcoming week is an excellent way to ensure you don't spend more than you need to on food shopping. By helping you cut out impulse purchases, meal planners can also benefit your health by reducing the amount of junk food slipping into your trolley, as well as the likelihood of you ordering a takeaway because you haven't got the right ingredients to cook with. Ordering fewer takeaways is also a fool-proof way to save money - the definition of a win-win!

Create a budget

Creating - and sticking to - a budget is arguably the simplest, most effective way to save money. Our Plane Saver Budget Planner will help you plot your income against your outgoings to help you keep track of your finances and identify any problems before they occur and, best of all, it's completely free! Download yours here.

Don't be afraid to discuss financial issues

Many people in the UK would prefer to say nothing at all than admit they're struggling with their finances, but research has shown that talking to friends, family and even your employer about money issues helps relieve stress and stops you from making the same mistakes over and over again. If you're feeling anxious about your economic situation, picking up the phone and talking to someone you trust could make all the difference.

At Plane Saver, we're here to help

Our credit union offers a wide range of loans and saving accounts to help you keep your finances in order or get them back on track. For more information and to find out if you're eligible to join, click here.

Black Friday - Our top tips!

What is Black Friday?

Black Friday is an informal name for the Friday after Thanksgiving in the United States, which sees many stores offering big sales and price reductions. This now incredibly popular sales event also happens every year in the UK. This year it falls on Friday the 26th of November. It’s one of the biggest shopping events on the retail calendar and current shopping trends suggest that most of us will look for our Black Friday bargains online.

With a range of retailers set to reduce their prices on luxury items such as TVs, toys, laptops, and pretty much anything you can get your hands-on, it's the best time of the year to find a deal that’s perfect for you - and it’s a great chance to get Christmas presents sorted ahead of the big day.

Top 3 tips for the Black Friday sales

It’s hard to say where the best deals will be and what products to buy this Black Friday as it can vary every year. We can though offer you some top tips on what to look out for and how to stay ahead of the mayhem.

1. Research the products beforehand

It’s always great snapping up a bargain - but it’s not great if the product isn’t worth it. So, make sure you read the reviews online on that specific product and any other product from that company. If your item isn’t exclusive to one retailer, check the prices against other retailers.

2. Create a wish list

Some websites allow you to set one up, but you can also write it down. Having a list to refer to so you know which items you want is extremely helpful. It saves you time, instead of scrolling through item after item trying to find the best deal. It’s also a simple way to curb your spending.

3. Look for the early deals

In recent years, many retailers and outlets have launched deals a week or two before Black Friday. There may even be some who run promotions throughout the whole of November. If you’re really keen you can even jump online super early to try and get a head start on everyone else.

4. Do you NEED it?

Before you spend, ask yourself, do I need it? Can I afford it? If the answer is no to any of those questions, then DON’T buy. It's not a saving if you weren't going to buy it anyway.

5. Look out for scams

If it looks too good to be true it could be false! Be on the lookout for dodgy sellers and scams, as scammers tend to take advantage of unsuspecting people around this time of year. Here are a few ways to protect yourself:

Keep a strong password - It may seem simple, but it is effective. According to the National Cyber Security Centre, a good way to create a strong and memorable password is to use three random words - with numbers and symbols. Use a different password that isn't the same as your account details

Make sure the site you are using is real - Make sure you’re triple-checking everything is legit when using a website that you’re unfamiliar with. Look for things such as previous reviews and trust ratings. If you don’t think it checks out then don’t take a risk on that site before you hand out your financial information!

Think about your payment - Consider how you would like to pay. Credit Cards are usually safer and more reliable than Debit Cards - you have more protection if something goes wrong. You can also use Google or Apple Pay where you don’t have to give the seller your information directly.

When purchasing online expect to provide some method of payment, shipping address, telephone number, and email address, etc, however, if the seller requests other information don’t go through with the purchase.

This month, we are offering members the option to apply for a loan of up to £2,000 to help cover the cost of shopping the sales for Christmas bargains. To apply, simply log into the mobile app or click 'Log in' at the top of this page and click on the 'Personal Loan' application.

Early Christmas Planning

With Christmas being a notoriously expensive time of year, it's time to make sure your finances are in order while there's still time.

Christmas is just around the corner and, with the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic still being felt by many households, finding enough money to give your family the festive period of their dreams may be easier said than done.

However, with our budgeting advice, you can plan your Christmas spending in advance and ensure your money stretches as far as possible. Here are our top tips.

1. Be realistic

When all's said and done, Christmas isn't worth going broke for, so stick to what you can afford and don't be tempted to get into debt just to keep up appearances.

2. Make small sacrifices

Making small sacrifices in the run-up to December 25th is an easy way to help boost your Christmas coffers. For example, instead of buying lunch during the week while at work, prepare something at home to take with you and you'll be surprised at how much you can save.

3. It's never too soon to start shopping

Whatever the time of year, planning ahead is the key to saving money and this is particularly true around Christmas. Start by making a list of all the people you need to buy for and if you see something suitable at a reasonable - or reduced - price, buy it now.

4. More expensive doesn't mean better

Paying over the odds for branded food and drink or the most expensive available option doesn't mean it's going to taste better, so shop around for cheaper alternatives. The same applies to sundry items like wrapping paper, Christmas cards and decorations.

5. Limit who you buy presents for

There's no rule that says you have to buy presents for your colleagues, cousins or anyone else for that matter. Stick to only buying presents for immediate family and your wallet will be thanking you in no time - you could even put a price cap on the amount you spend per person.

6. Make your own gifts

Instead of buying all your presents, why not get creative and make some instead? This list of Xmas gifts you can make yourself has plenty of great ideas that will raise a smile and save a packet.

7. Do your research

One of the easiest ways to save money on Christmas presents is to shop around and compare prices from several retailers. And always remember to check if your presents are available cheaper online - in addition to the likes of Amazon, sites like Facebook Marketplace and eBay are full of bargains.

8. Plan journeys in advance

Discounted train tickets are available now for Christmas so if you need to travel around over the festive period, book yours asap before they sell out.

We can help with the cost of Christmas

At Plane Saver, our affordable Christmas Loans could help you cover the cost of your festivities without needing to turn to high-cost lenders. If you'd like to know more, click here to apply.

The 2021 Autumn Budget | How Will I Be Affected?

Now that the 2021 Autumn Budget has been announced, we take a look at the impact it could have on our members.

On Wednesday, October 27th, Rishi Sunak, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, unveiled his Budget for autumn 2021. So what did it include and what does it all mean for our members? We take a look.


From April 1st, 2022, the National Living Wage will rise from £8.91 an hour to £9.50, leaving those in full-time employment an extra £1,000 per year better off. The National Minimum Wage will also increase to £9.18 per hour for younger workers and £4.81 for apprentices.

Members of the armed forces, nurses, and teachers will also receive a pay rise when a pay freeze is lifted in April.

Universal Credit

The Universal Credit taper rate - the amount of Universal Credit (UC) withdrawn for every pound someone earns - will be cut from 63p to 55p by December 1st.

While this could be worth more than £2 billion to those claiming Universal Credit overall, it's worth noting that the £20 per week increase to UC payments that was introduced at the start of the coronavirus pandemic has now been withdrawn. Whether or not the reduction to the UC taper rate will fill that gap remains to be seen.

Affordable housing

Good news for first-time buyers - the government has committed £24 billion to a multi-year housing settlement, with £11.5 billion of funding going towards building new affordable homes.

Fuel duty

Good news for motorists too, as fuel duty has been frozen at 57.95p per litre, a move that is predicted to save drivers an average of £1,900 over the next five years. With pump prices at an eight-year high, it's hard to imagine anyone complaining.

Schools and education

Among a raft of new measures are:

  • an extra £4.7 billion for schools by 2024/25
  • nearly £2 billion of new funding to help colleges and schools recover from the pandemic
  • the launch of a new Start for Life scheme to support families, perinatal mental health services, and parenting programmes
  • a pay rise for childcare providers

An additional £44 billion has been made available to increase healthcare spending by May 2024. While the details are a little vague, extra investment in the NHS should make getting GP appointments easier and help hospitals deal with ever-lengthening waiting lists.


With the state of the UK's roads coming in for regular criticism, £2.6 billion has been committed for more than 50 local road upgrades and more than £5 billion has been put aside for road maintenance - enough to fill approximately one million more potholes per year.

What now?

While the Budget contains some good news for households, it is too soon to tell how much of an impact it will have on families. This is because the prices of many goods and services are still rising and, as a result, the Bank of England is expected to announce an increase to its key interest rate in November. If this happens, it will affect the amount the public sector receives after the pay freeze ends and could also negatively impact the increase to the National Living Wage.

Consequently, now is not the time to make drastic changes to your spending habits. Instead, we would recommend our members continue to be as careful as possible with their money while the financial impact of the pandemic is still evolving.

If you think you would benefit from one of our loans or savings accounts, you can find out more about our services here.

Happy International Credit Union Day!

Credit Unions Throughout History

Established in 1948 to increase awareness of the work carried out by credit unions and the benefits they deliver, International Credit Union Day (ICU Day) takes place on October 21st. But what do we know about the foundation of the first credit union? And what do credit unions really do? Let's find out...

What is a credit union?

At its core, a credit union is a bank controlled by its members that offers them financial services including access to expert advice, loans, and savings accounts, while operating on a strictly not-for-profit basis. In excess of 1.3 million people in the UK are credit union members and there are more than 230 million credit union members worldwide. Credit unions also come in a huge variety of sizes, with some boasting hundreds of thousands of members and some having only a handful.

Whereas commercial banks have customers and tend to be publicly traded or privately owned, credit unions have members to whom they offer lower rates on loans, higher annual percentage yields on their savings, and lower fees.

Another difference between credit unions and commercial banks is that credit unions don't pay a fixed rate of interest on savings balances, meaning they can distribute their profits among their members as an annual dividend or as a rebate of loan interest already paid. Consequently, credit unions are known for prioritising people over profits.

When did the first credit union appear?

Founded in Slovakia to provide cheap loans to its members, the first credit union was established as long ago as 1845 and was originally called 'The Household Association'. Although this original iteration of the credit union only survived until 1851, this was long enough for it to have a lasting impact on financial services in Slovakia and it was quickly acknowledged as having rescued many Slovaks from poverty.

The success of The Household Association didn't go unnoticed and, in 1852, an economist by the name of Franz Hermann Schulze-Delitzsch set up two credit unions in Germany. After both proved overwhelmingly popular, Schulze-Delitzsch set about opening more and, by 1859, more than 200 credit unions had sprung up all across the country.

Not content with simply establishing credit unions, Schulze-Delitzsch then helped develop the legislation which ensured financially unstable Germans would always have access to them and, as a result, much-needed capital.

When he died in 1883, Schulze-Delitzsch was responsible for helping set up more than 3,500 credit union branches in Germany, and for exporting the idea to other countries in Europe. By 1888, credit unions had become commonplace in England, France, the Netherlands, Italy, and Russia, amongst others. And the rest, as they say, is history!

What about Plane Saver?

We first started out in 1993 and were originally known as British Airways (UK) Employees Credit Union. In 1997, we broadened our membership criteria and began welcoming employees of UK-based, Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) registered airlines and their associated companies. In 2010, we extended our common bond further still to include those employed by, or associated with, other industries including transport, the armed forces, and engineering.

In 2015, we started ‘First Defence Finance’ to provide our services to the Ministry of Defence, and today we're one of the largest credit unions in the UK, with more than 16,000 members. To date, we've lent them more than £100 million!

We're here to help

At Plane Saver, we want to help all our members achieve financial stability. If you think one of our affordable loans or savings accounts is just what you need, click here to find out if you're eligible to join and start your application.

Preparing Your Car For Winter

With autumn already upon us and winter just around the corner, now is the time to ensure your car is ready for the cold weather.

With rapidly falling temperatures, fewer daylight hours, and poorer weather, the arrival of winter usually brings with it an increase in breakdowns, so it's worth taking a few minutes to ensure your motor is prepared. Here are our top tips for getting your car through to spring.

Check your battery

Car batteries have a life expectancy of approximately five years, which is why most manufacturers recommend getting yours checked at least twice a year.

If you haven't had yours looked at for a while, do it before winter arrives - in addition to the risk posed by the cold weather, you'll most likely be using your lights and heater more than usual, putting more strain on the battery than it's accustomed to. And the last thing you want is to find yourself stuck in the middle of nowhere in freezing temperatures.

If your car has problems starting, get the battery checked as soon as possible and replaced if necessary. You could also teach yourself how to jump-start your car here.

Check your tyres

It's obviously important to keep your tyres in good condition all year round but, as they're responsible for both braking and steering, ensuring you have reliable tyres over the wet and icy winter months should be top of your to-do list.

Although the legal minimum depth of tread is 1.6mm, your tyres should have a minimum depth of 3mm over winter to improve their grip on potentially slippery surfaces. You could even swap your tyres for winter tyres, which improve braking, traction and grip at any temperature below 7℃.

Top up your antifreeze

Adding antifreeze to your engine coolant over winter is vital to protect your car's engine and it's also important to get the mix right - you're looking for a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze.

Once you've topped up, remember to keep checking it as the antifreeze will become diluted over time. If it becomes over-diluted, it runs the risk of freezing during particularly cold weather, causing the engine to overheat and leaving you with an untimely repair bill. And remember to keep spare antifreeze in your car at all times!

Take your car for a service

If your car needs servicing, it's a good idea to get it done before winter - cold weather can cause all sorts of problems but many of them can be prevented with a preemptive maintenance check. Some garages even offer discounted winter car checks.

What you're after here is a mechanic to take a look at your tyres, battery, wipers, brake pads, lights and oil.

Keep a winter kit in your car at all times

The only thing predictable about winter weather is how unpredictable it can be, so it's important to prepare for every eventuality.

Every car should have a winter kit that includes:

  • a scraper
  • de-icer
  • a shovel
  • a blanket
  • a hi-visibility vest
  • food and drink
  • sat-nav and a map or atlas
  • a torch
  • spare batteries
  • a mobile phone and phone charger
  • snow grips in case you need to walk to safety
  • screenwash
  • antifreeze

In addition, it's also worth checking your oil before setting off anywhere and remembering to fill your tank up with petrol once you get down to a quarter tank of fuel in case of unexpected delays.

Clean your lights

With the nights drawing in, you need your car's lights, indicators, and rear reflectors to be as effective as possible, so carrying out regular maintenance on them is imperative. Make sure you don't have any blown bulbs or cracked lenses and remember to check your full-beam headlights and fog lights too.

Prepare for your journey in advance

Even if you're not travelling far, preparing in advance will help you arrive safely at your destination. Check the weather forecast and travel news and, if you have one, use a sat-nav device to find the safest route. If the forecast looks bad and your journey isn't essential, the safest option is to not travel - always drive according to the road and weather conditions.

It's also a good idea to allow yourself extra time so you can drive slowly when necessary.

Need a hand getting your car winter-ready?

At Plane Saver, our Personal Loans can help ensure you and your car have everything you need to make it safely through winter. Apply for yours here.

Thinking about booking a Late Summer Holiday?

Summer may be coming to an end but you can still experience a last-minute holiday. We've taken a look at the latest travel rules and restrictions for some popular European destinations.

For many people across the UK, normality is returning and one of the pleasures that people have missed the most is the ability to holiday abroad for some sun, sea, and fun. But with travel restrictions to most countries easing, now is an excellent time to book a holiday and take advantage of what remains of summer.

We’ve decided to help you by listing some of the best European destinations to visit, along with the travel restrictions that remain in place. Here's what you need to know:

Key advice

If you decide to travel abroad, you'll be required to take Covid tests but please be aware that the rules vary depending on whether you're visiting a green, amber, or red list country.

In most cases, you will need to return a negative test or provide proof that you are fully vaccinated before entering another country, on arrival at your hotel, and before returning to the UK.

However, every country has its own rules, so remember to visit this Government website for a full list of requirements and up-to-date travel advice before travelling.

Travelling to France

You must be fully vaccinated to holiday in France. Fully vaccinated people can travel from the UK as long as they provide proof of their vaccination status and complete a 'sworn statement'.

The NHS Covid Pass can be used as evidence of vaccination status. Children aged 12 and over need to provide proof of a negative PCR test. You can find all the travel advice from the government here.

If you’re looking for the best locations and places to touch down in France, Planetware has got you covered - listing 21 beautiful, must-see destinations all over the country.

Travelling to Spain

Everyone aged 12 or over arriving in Spain from the UK must present either a negative Covid-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of travelling or proof of being fully vaccinated at least 14 days before travel.

The NHS Covid Pass can also be used as evidence of vaccination status. You must also complete a health control form no more than 48 hours before travelling.

There's lots to see and do in Spain, including buzzing cities, coastal beaches, and quaint mountain villages. In 2018, Culture Trip listed fifteen excellent cities and towns to visit in España; dive into its list here.

If Spain is the ideal destination for you, the weather forecast predicts temperatures in the low thirties for the foreseeable - so it’s looking very promising!

Travelling to Greece

If you're craving some excellent weather and perfect beaches, you can head to Greece so long as you complete a passenger locator form before travelling and, if you're aged 12 or over, provide one of the following:

● A negative PCR test, taken within 72 hours before arrival

● A negative lateral flow test, taken within 48 hours before arrival

● Proof of recovery from Covid (a positive PCR result dated 30-180 days before travel)

● Proof of being fully vaccinated at least 14 days before arrival. The NHS Covid Pass can be used as evidence of vaccination status

You may also have to take a rapid Covid test once you arrive in Greece and, if other passengers on your plane or ferry test positive, you may be required to self-isolate.

Full travel advice is available here.

As is typical for this time of year, the temperature for the coming weeks is steady at around 30°, so don't forget your sunscreen and towels!

Travelling to Malta

Those who like warm weather and great value for money could do a lot worse than taking a trip to Malta. If you're considering it, bear in mind that UK visitors aged 12 and over must be fully vaccinated and children aged 5-11 must show evidence of a negative PCR test carried out within 72 hours before arrival. The NHS Covid Pass is accepted as evidence of vaccination status.

You will also need to complete a passenger locator and public health declaration before you travel.

As for potential destinations, Malta's capital, Valletta, boasts a huge variety of sights and cultural attractions and temperatures as high as 31°.

There are more cities than just Valletta, of course. The Three Cities and Mdina offer plenty more to explore and do in this beautiful part of the world and Voyage Tips has put together a list of the country's must-see attractions and points of interest.

Travelling to Italy

If it's cappuccinos and the culture you’re after, there are not many better places than Italy!

To be allowed into the country, you'll need to complete an online digital form, prove you are fully vaccinated, and present a negative PCR or lateral flow test taken within 48 hours before arriving. The NHS Covid Pass is accepted as proof of vaccination. Unvaccinated under-18s won't have to quarantine if they are travelling with a fully vaccinated adult. You must also call the local Covid-19 hotline to inform them of your visit within 48 hours of arrival.

Unvaccinated travellers and those without proof of full vaccination and a negative test will need to isolate for five days.

With plenty of cities to choose from, Bazaar has pieced together some of the more low-key and under-the-radar cities and islands to explore.

Need some help with your last-minute holiday?

We are here to help! With a Plane Saver holiday loan, you could borrow from £500 to £10,000 and enjoy rates as low as 3.4% APR. Find out everything you need to know about our holiday loan here.

Credit Union Members can win up to £5,000 Each Month with PrizeSaver Scheme

Plane Saver Credit Union, in partnership with credit unions across the UK, will now run the PrizeSaver Scheme originally set up by the Government in 2019 to promote a savings culture. Members of Plane Saver can continue to win a top prize of £5,000 a month and 20 smaller prizes of £20.

The scheme has encouraged members to save over £1m, with winners receiving over £100,000 across the 14 participating credit unions.

Commenting on the success of the scheme, Head of Operations at Plane Saver, Gurminder Bhagrath said ‘’We are delighted to be able to continue this product for our members. Having had over 60 winners, we are excited to see the scheme continue for the benefit of our members’’.

“It gives account holders the chance to win prizes every month in order to incentivise them getting into a savings habit,” says CEO of the Association of British Credit Unions, Robert Kelly. “Credit unions have a proven track record of helping people to save and to improve their financial resilience. Our sector has helped members to build up savings of over £1.7bn and encouraging saving is central to what we are all about. That’s why this saving scheme fits so neatly into the credit union mission.”

The PrizeSaver scheme is partly inspired by the 'Save to Win' scheme in the US, which has helped credit union members save $200million and has awarded $3.1million in prizes nationwide.

The 14 credit unions participating in the scheme are:

Plane Saver Credit Union

1st Alliance (Ayrshire) Credit Union

Central Liverpool Credit Union

Clockwise Credit Union

Commsave Credit Union

East Sussex Credit Union

Lewisham Plus Credit Union

London Capital Credit Union

Merthyr Tydfil Borough Credit Union

Notts & Lincs Credit Union

Riverside Credit Union

Serve and Protect CU

South Manchester Credit Union

Westcountry Savings and Loans

To open your Prize Saver with Plane saver, click HERE

New Car? What you need to know before you buy or borrow.

Is it time to upgrade your run-around to something altogether more eye-catching, economical, and reliable? Car finance is designed to help you spread the cost of car ownership with a repayment plan to suit your situation. However, while it can make buying a used car affordable, weighing up the different finance options available can be difficult if you don't know the difference between your options or your APRs. Hire Purchase (HP) and Personal Contract Payment (PCP) are the most popular types of car finance but you can use a loan or your savings to purchase a car outright.

Let's take a look at the options in more detail. . .

What is Hire Purchase (HP)

A Hire Purchase (HP) finance agreement works by providing a loan that equals the total value of the car, minus the amount of your initial deposit. You pay back HP finance through monthly repayments at a fixed interest rate, over a pre-agreed term of one to seven years.

Typically, the deposits tend to be around 10% of the total value of the car, but this depends on your chosen dealer. The more deposit you pay upfront, the smaller your monthly repayments are likely to be. Once you have made all the repayments plus a final purchasing fee, you will own your car outright.

What is Personal Contract Payment (PCP)

With a Personal Contract Payment (PCP) car finance plan, you have more flexibility when it comes to what happens to the car at the end of the agreement. The amount you borrow is considerably less than the total value of the vehicle, minus your deposit - meaning that you pay less per month on a smaller car loan. You can reduce your PCP repayments by paying a larger deposit, and also by keeping your mileage low.

PCP effectively defers part of the repayment until the end of the agreement. With PCP car finance, you usually get three options:

  • You can pay a larger final payment to own your car outright.
  • You can choose to not pay the final payment and return your car.
  • You can part-exchange it for a new one.

As you will have the opportunity to return your car at the end of the PCP term, it's especially important to look after it. As any damage affects the value of the car. You will be asked to agree to your forecasted annual mileage at the outset of your agreement - exceeding this is likely to come with extra fees. You may want to consider putting some money aside each month to cover the maintenance of the car.

Buying a car outright

There are many used car deals currently available on the market and with sites such as Autotrader and CarWow. It is relatively easy to find the right one for you. If you can purchase a car with cash you already have, then that is probably the best option. However, for some people who do not want to use their savings or do not have enough in their savings, taking out a personal loan can be a good option. As a member of Plane Saver Credit Union, you can apply to borrow anything from as little as £500 up to £25,000* so, if you need a deposit or to purchase a vehicle, get in touch and see how we could help.

* All loans are subject to status. Terms and conditions apply. Representative 12.7% APR. If you would like a personal loan quotation, please contact our lending team:

The dangers of 'Buy Now Pay Later'

2020's Christmas shopping period was probably one of the strangest many of us have experienced. Less of us were able to hit the high streets for our annual Christmas shop and more of us took advantage of the numerous deals online. But, with the dramatic increase of 'buy now pay later' or 'repay in three months' offers, what does this mean for our long term affordability?

You might think what's the harm in that right? Well imagine you make a large purchase or you fill your shopping cart to the brim then opt to repay over three months. Did you have to fill out an affordability calculator? Probably not. So how do they know you will be able to afford those payments over the next three months?

If you find yourself being tempted to spread the cost, make sure you do the maths before you hit that checkout button. Here are three steps to take before you proceed:

  1. Set up a monthly budget planner and add in all your usual outgoings PLUS the cost of the buy now pay later repayments
  2. Check how much money you would have leftover each month and evaluate it! Can you afford your day to day expenses?
  3. If you have savings, consider using them to pay for your goods in full. Then amend your budget planner to see the difference!

You can download a FREE budget planner from the Money Advice Service - CLICK HERE.

Remember, you can save for next year with a Plane Saver account.

International Credit Union Day 2020

On Oct. 15, 2020, credit union members around the world will celebrate International Credit Union Day®, an annual event to commemorate the credit union movement’s impact and achievements. This year marks the 72nd anniversary.

Credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives that provide an effective and viable alternative to for-profit financial institutions for more than 274 million members in 118 countries worldwide. More than 85,000 credit unions exist globally, providing a plethora of financial services for their members, recognized as a force for positive economic and social change. Plane Saver Credit Union was established in 1993 and now serves over 15,000 members.

Since 1948, International Credit Union Day has been celebrated annually on the third Thursday of October. Each year, the international event allows remembering credit unions’ proud history and promote awareness of and support for the credit union and financial cooperative difference. This year’s theme is “Inspiring Hope for a Global Community.”

Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, credit unions around the globe have continued to provide a high level of service to their members and demonstrated generosity to their local communities that have set them apart from other financial institutions. We are truly inspiring hope for a global credit union community. ICU Day 2020 is a celebration of the impact credit unions and other financial cooperatives have made—and continue to make for their members. It is also a chance to be thankful for the lives and communities that have been improved by our movement.

School uniforms – how to find the perfect fit.

With just a matter of weeks until the highly anticipated start of the new school term, you might already be thinking about kitting out the kids. We have put together a short guide on the best deals* we have found on the wonderful world wide web.


Let's face it, ASDA is a firm favourite for uniforms, and every year they seem to meet the demand for affordable yet durable school kit. Here you will find a selection of their Online Exclusives with prices starting from just £2.00:

TU by Sainsury's

Sainsbury’s have upped the stakes with their uniform supplies this year! You can even bag a pair of plimsolls for just £3.00. The shoe range also includes ToeZone which allows your little ones’ feet to move more comfortably. Take a look here:


Not expecting this one? Neither were we to be honest! We must give them some major credit for their multi packs which are reasonably priced. We also liked their collection of lunch bags and water bottles which we feel like we could potentially get away with buying for ourselves! Check it out:


Their prices may be slightly higher than the supermarkets however, the quality is good. You can get some of their shirt and polo packs for as little as £8.00! So if you’re open to spending that little bit more, why not see what they have here: They also offer next-day delivery, so it’s a good choice for all you last-minute shoppers!

M&M Direct

This website reminds us a little of an outlet store. You might get lucky or you might not however, they do stock brands like Adidas, Ralph Lauren, and Kickers so definitely worth a try for things like trainers and bags.

JD Sports

For everyone out there with kids who make demands for the brands! JD Sports is a solid favourite for trainers and everything you need for your favourite little sports champion. The prices are higher than the non-branded options but there is no denying the quality. You can find their back-to-school collection here but they also have a summer sale on which might be worth your while.

*We checked these prices on 07/08/2020

Recent donations from Friends of Plane Saver

During such testing times it didn't come as a surprise to us when we heard that some of the country's charities have been struggling. The demand for services and resources is increasing by the day. Our charitable partner, Friends of Plane Saver, recently selected five UK charities to each receive a £1000 donation to help them meet current demand for their services.

Trussell Trust:

“The donation will help support the 426 food banks in their network and to provide support food banks after the initial 3-6 months emergency as the impact of this crisis will be felt for some time. This will ensure food banks can continue to support people in crisis with emergency food and access to additional advice and support services to help get people back on their feet. The individuals and families who turn to food banks for help are overwhelmed by the warmth and compassion they receive and the dignity they are afforded.”


“Thank you so much to you and all at Plane Saver for your support of Shelter through you donation of £1,000. Your continued support truly does make an amazing difference to families struggling with bad housing and homelessness.”

Victory Services Club:

“Big thank you to Plane Saver for the most generous donation. You will also wish to know that during this crisis the Club has remained open, but only for key workers. Currently, we have fifty individuals who are staying with us and these are very largely drawn from military personnel who are augmenting the Ministry of Defence, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and the National Health Service, amongst others. The Club has a team of living-in staff who are looking after these fifty key workers; we have offered up to one hundred bedrooms. The service we are providing is extremely bespoke and is fully cognisant of the health advice in respect of social distancing and our dedicated housekeeping staff are delivering an enhanced cleaning programme. Your donation will assist greatly in our commitment to keeping the Club open to key workers during this difficult time and will also support the Club’s dedicated workforce. “

Red Cross Covid-19 Appeal:

Due to the increase in their demand, we have not been able to get a quote about our donation from the British Red Cross however, they did say ''In these uncertain times, small acts of kindness can make a huge difference. For over 150 years, the British Red Cross has supported people in the UK in times of crisis. The ongoing, ever-changing situation concerning the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is no exception. Our network of incredible staff and volunteers means we are uniquely placed to reach people in fearful, uncertain times. But it’s the generosity of our supporters that enables our work to happen quickly and efficiently. We rely on your support to keep us going. With your help, we’ll continue to provide vital humanitarian, individual support for the most vulnerable, and those who fall through the gaps.''

NHS Charities:

We decided the best way to do this was through Captain Tom’s Just Giving page (Captain Tom’s 100th birthday walk for the NHS) not just because of his military achievements but also his amazing charitable achievement at 100 years of age is nothing short of amazing! A real inspiration.

Friends of Plane Saver is a private lottery for members of Plane Saver Credit Union. Friends of Plane Saver is overseen by a group of volunteer trustees who run the lottery on behalf of the members of Plane Saver Credit Union. Tickets cost just £1 with a maximum of 10 tickets per member and there are three monthly prizes to be won:

  • 1st Prize £1000
  • 2nd Prize £500
  • 3rd Prize £250

Members can join the lottery by visiting the Friends of Plane Saver website.

COVID-19: The latest update

Following the announcement by Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, the Board of Directors and we took the decision to close our office in order to protect our employees and our members. We are continuing to review the COVID-19 updates and advice the government issued.

However, our message to our members is that Plane Saver Credit Union is very much operational, and we will be continuing to support our members with savings and loans in the same way we have done for the past 27 years.

During these uncertain times, understandably, lots of our members have questions about their accounts and what services we can continue to offer in this time of national crisis. In order to reassure you and answer your questions and concerns we have created some FAQs as guidance for those who need it.

We ask that members continue to follow our updates and announcements on our Facebook page, Twitter page and our main website.

We thank our members and working partners for their ongoing support

Click here to see our FAQs:

COVID-19 Update for members

Following the recent updates on Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the possibility of emergency workplace evacuations, we have had to take preventative measures to help minimise the risk of infection within our offices and workforce in line with NHS guidance on best practices.

As of Monday 16th March 2020, and until further notice, members and visitors will not be able to visit or access our office. This is a protective precaution for the health and safety of our staff and our members.

Please continue to check our social media pages for updates.

For the most up to date government advice on Coronavirus, please visit:

Your FREE Life Cover and Loan Protection is changing

Your level of cover is changing from 1st June 2020
As a member, you automatically receive Life Cover FREE when you save and/or take a loan out with us. The cover is FREE to all members and you do not need to do anything to activate this cover. Both the savings and loan cover is subject to the terms and conditions below.
*Life Savings
  • The maximum amount of cover is £10,000
  • Your beneficiary will receive 100% of your balance as cover on top of your balance; up to age of 64
  • Your beneficiary will receive 50% of your balance as cover on top of your balance; up to age of 69
  • Your beneficiary will receive 25% of your balance as cover on top of your balance; up to age of 79
  • Your beneficiary will receive 0% thereafter
*Loan Protection
  • to age 70
  • limit of £10,000
*Cuna Mutual Group Limited are the providers of the Life Savings and Loan Protection Scheme. Plane Saver Credit Union do not offer or own this insurance product but are the administrator managing claims between our members and CUNA Mutual Group Ltd. Please ensure that your beneficiaries are aware of this benefit. If you make a claim between now & 1st June, your cover will still be up to the limit of £20,000.

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If you'd like to join Plane Saver, simply fill in our application form.

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