Wedding etiquette – am I alone in preferring to be told what gifts a couple wants?
On Tuesday I wrote my ask for wedding cash not gifts blog – exploring how gift giving as a form of social banking. I was surprised by how partisan the responses were – many people supported my idea, yet some deemed it near blasphemous. Yet it was the "you shouldn’t give any indication" comments that most intrigued...
How to have lots of passwords without struggling to remember them
The news splash about the major PlayStation Network security breach possibly affecting 3 million people in the UK brings into sharp focus the scourge of our digital age – the password dilemma. Should you be secure and use lots of different passwords? Or is it more convenient and easy to remember just one or two? Almost everything...
Olympics ticketing system – a psychic booking process that’s anti-consumer
It’s the last day in which you can put in a bid for tickets for the 2012 Olympics. I’ve completed mine and as an Olympo-phile I’m incredibly excited. But I find the entire need for psychic booking quite ridiculous. There are many things wrong with the way the organisers have set up the ticket payment system (for...
Don’t be afraid to request wedding cash instead of gifts
Wedding gifts aren’t just a pleasant way of wishing a new couple a great life together, historically they’re there as a form of social banking and before you decide what to ask for on the big day – it’s worth understanding the function this ‘ceremonial gift exchange’ performs. Later this week, the most talked about UK wedding...
My PPI day diary – paps, snaps, clips and facts
What a fantastic day. The FSA gave the banks a kicking in the High Court over PPI and I had the joy of being in the court to watch. After that it was a day of running and ranting around on the media, taking advantage of the interest to get the ‘reclaim PPI’ message across. As it’s...
Is AV really so complex? Or is it just confusion marketing?
The vote on the Alternative Vote is around the corner. Yet all I seem to read is misinformation, confusion, and politicking. I find the whole process slightly distasteful. Here we are with a chance to change our democratic system, when what we need is a decent, rational debate and to ensure that everyone understands the choice – yet...
Only fair to publish my own results on BBC’s Big Money Test…
Last night on Watchdog I launched the BBC’s new Big Money Test. It’s a massive social science experiment to assess the financial capability of the nation and help people improve their own skills – with the hope of helping policy makers in the future see what’s lacking (it should be great for the campaign for financial education)....
Do Twitter and Facebook make blog comments easier?
Scan your eyes down to the bottom of this blog. As well as the normal forum discussion link, you’ll see that you can also post short 50 word comments. We’ve been noticing recently that as well as the detailed reaction in the forum, many people make smaller comments via Twitter or on my Facebook page. So to...
Inspired by an amazing man – Chris Hyde’s Bucket List
Chris is 45, from Kidderminster and is dying. He has brain cancer and as such has what he calls a bucket list (things he wants to do before he kicks it). Some may think it morbid; I, like many others, think it’s inspiring. I was contacted by members of the MSE forum community, telling me about Chris’ Bucket...
Nando’s – the worst designed public toilet I’ve ever seen
For me a trip to Nando’s is a guilty pleasure, but the loos in the Westfield (the big London shopping centre) were the most poorly designed I’ve ever had the misfortune to witness. I hope the photo I took (I know photographing toilets is a bit strange, but you need to see it to understand) does the...
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Martin Lewis: Is it time to ban unnecessary Christmas presents?5 December 2022Update September 2017: It’s eight years since I first braved this subject, expecting a snowstorm of protest. Instead, year after year more join in, like Julia who recently tweeted me, “@MartinSLewis, finally took your advice and told my family I can’t afford Christmas presents. What a weight off my mind. Thank you.” One year even the Archbishop of...
Martin Lewis: The one thing everyone aged over 66 needs to know29 November 2022It is a national tragedy that getting on for a million pensioners, many of whom have been paying into the system for years, are missing out on a critical boost to their income. It's called pension credit, and this year it also means you get an extra £650 to help with energy bills.