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High Inflation.

(186 Posts)
Calendargirl Wed 04-May-22 07:11:13

Just listened to the early news on the radio, said inflation is highest for a decade.

Then a quick interview with a couple with two young children, asking how they were coping.

They said, with a laugh, they have had to give up going out. No more coffees, brunches, lunches which they obviously did quite a lot. Nothing wrong with that, but hardly a huge hardship.

I must sound like a grumpy old woman, but so many things that were viewed as ‘treats’ or ‘special’ not so long ago now seem to be viewed as necessities, and not just by the younger generation.

BlueBelle Wed 04-May-22 07:39:56

I often wonder how I ve ever lived and how my children grew big and strong we ate mince in various ways for lots of meals we bought broken biscuits and bacon pieces and they had
(good quality) second hand clothes toys and books but they did not go without at all My mum and dad bought their winter shoes and winter coats We had everything we needed they played out all the time They are all in professions and never been without a job and all have children who have a million things they never had

Joseanne Wed 04-May-22 07:56:24

I think there was a big shift 30 or so years ago towards enjoying oneself going out, out, out. The hospitality industry soared with cafés and restaurants, the leisure industry with gyms and fitness clubs, the beauty industry with spas and treatments etc etc. It seemed as though everyone wanted to "treat" themselves because they were worth it. I guess the time has now come to reconsider, and those kind of things will have to go first. There will be a lot of disgruntled people though.

GrannyGravy13 Wed 04-May-22 08:09:30

I suppose it’s the difference between getting through each day and living each day to the full?

travelsafar Wed 04-May-22 08:19:35

I wonder how many women will end up having to pluck their own eyebrows, paint their own real nails, learn how to colour hair and style it. This will apply to some men too. All these treatments done in specialist places are very expensive and possibly will be the first to go if times are hard. It could mean some going out of business as people cut back.

Germanshepherdsmum Wed 04-May-22 08:22:00

It’s certainly an alien lifestyle to me but one that many younger people see as entirely normal and they feel deprived if they have to cut back on things that seem luxuries to me. I thought I was being wasteful buying a sandwich for my lunch at work instead of taking something in from home. I suppose many young people spend a lot on gyms and beauty treatments too, I have never even had a manicure or pedicure so really can’t relate to it. They are certainly going to feel the pinch but I find it hard to sympathise when so many can’t afford the basic necessities.

Sago Wed 04-May-22 08:56:31

Once a week we do a shop for a local food bank, we have a jute bag with a shopping list, you are asked not to go off piste and to try and adhere to the list.
It’s humbling.
It costs between £13 and £16 pounds and goes a long way to feeding two people for a week.
The food bank have fresh produce, tea/coffee and juice that they add.
A take away Starbucks is £3.50, I don’t think any of my children ever arrive at our home without empty coffee cups they have bought on the journey, I couldn’t bring myself to spend £7 on two coffees, we travel with our Guinness travel mugs filled up at home and a couple of bits of fruit.
It’s very much a generational thing.

Kim19 Wed 04-May-22 08:57:42

I think it's fortunate (but not pleasant) that they have so many casual activities they can cut back on without hitting the heat or eat barrier. Most of the couples nowadays both work whereas I didn't and life was somewhat frugal but manageable. I wish us all luck with the financial management that seems to be about to hit us full on.

volver Wed 04-May-22 09:18:42

Some people have nice lives. They buy coffee at the coffee shop, they take their children for brunch, whatever. As inflation rises, their lives become not so nice; they can't have the things they used to.

Obviously its not the same as staying on the bus all day just to keep warm, but you can't blame people for being sad when their lives become "less nice". I didn't hear the interview that Calendargirl is talking about, but unless they were complaining it was the end of the world, I don't think we should criticise them.

FannyCornforth Wed 04-May-22 09:26:37

But there’s more to it than that.
It’s good when people have lots of disposable income, it keeps the economy going.
The people who do all the jobs that travels does will be out of work. Even less disposable income…
Cafes and pubs will close too.
(I’m particularly thinking of my local here - by the time I’m ready to start going out and about again (I haven’t been to the pub in over two years) the blooming thing will have shut down! sad)

Zonne Wed 04-May-22 09:38:38

Why on earth is there all this resentment? My kids have a more affluent lifestyle than I did when they were young; I had a better life than my parents, both financially and in terms of opportunities they never had; my mother was certainly better off in many ways than her mum, who started work at 13, crawling under industrial machines for 13 hours a day.

I for one am pleased that my sons and daughters-in-law can afford treats for themselves and their kids.

The reason they interview the more affluent as well as the poor is to show that this crisis is affecting us all, and has, therefore, potential to bring about significant political change.

It also has the potential for people to recognise that here is something we all have in common, even if the degree of impact differs, and which could bring people together - although some of the comments on this thread suggest that’s a forlorn hope.

Zonne Wed 04-May-22 09:39:18

Grrr. 12 hours a day. Point stands.

Germanshepherdsmum Wed 04-May-22 09:46:30

I don’t think it’s resentment at all. I certainly don’t resent others’ lifestyles and I am comfortably off, but if they were to moan about giving up some treats I would be inclined to try to give them a little perspective.

Zonne Wed 04-May-22 09:56:07

I haven’t seen the interview, so can’t comment on the specifics. But, if they were asked, ‘what will you need to cut back on’, or ‘how is the rise in prices affecting you’, I can imagine people listing the ways, and not expanding that they recognise others are far worse off, even if they feel that. Or the interview could’ve been edited due to time constraints. Or, of course, you’re right, they may be empathy-free creeps.

And you may not be resentful, but several posters on this thread seem to be, tbh.

Kate1949 Wed 04-May-22 10:02:56

We'll be OK. A Government Minister has come up with the bright idea that we should stop buying branded items and change to own brands. Like we hadn't thought of that before. 🙄

Riverwalk Wed 04-May-22 10:08:14

The couple didn't moan - they just replied to the question as to what they were cutting back on.

BigBertha1 Wed 04-May-22 10:22:48

We are very lucky in that we have good pensions and do more or less what we like but we aren't extravagant. However we are making some economies. We have been more careful about energy bills and have found that by switching off things and not leaving them on standby the electricity component of our fuel bill was £27 less last month. We do like a meal out but our favourite pub has put the price of meals up terrifically- nothing under £17 dessert £8. I will never understand why a steak is £25 in a pub where even in Waitrose a nice sirloin steak is £5 so its a meal out once every couple of weeks now- DH says once a month but he doesn't do the cooking!
As for coffees while we are out they just aren't very good or worth the money unless you find a nice authentic cafe- Costa and Starbucks coffee are vile. Small independents seem to be cheaper and better quality.
I don't begrudge my children and grandchildren their treats they work hard and pay their own way.

Calendargirl Wed 04-May-22 10:29:10

In my OP, I didn’t say the couple complained, I just stated what they said they were having, or choosing, to cut down on.

Another couple may have said the heating, or petrol, or certain foods.

I never go out to brunch, for example, so wouldn’t think of cutting that out.

MaizieD Wed 04-May-22 10:36:44

I will never understand why a steak is £25 in a pub where even in Waitrose a nice sirloin steak is £5

It's partly because the pub knows that people will pay the price they're asking, but it's primarily because the cost of that steak has to price in the maintenance/running costs of the establishment you're eating it in, the wages of the people who cook it and serve it to you, the price they've had to pay for it (supermarkets buy in bulk for big discounts. Individual establishments can't) and the price of the fuel used to cook it. If their costs are rising they have to raise their prices to cover it.

Whitewavemark2 Wed 04-May-22 10:39:16

Don’t forget the profit. That’s why they are in business, everything else is an inconvenient expense.

vegansrock Wed 04-May-22 10:40:04

Why shouldn’t people aspire to live on more than mince and live in warm homes? I’m all for cutting out waste and buying less, but no wish to return to 1950s.

MaizieD Wed 04-May-22 10:51:13

Sensible post, FannyCornforth

We're in for a recession and so far the government have made the pain worse by cutting the incomes of those who will have to give up the most. The Bank of England is about to make it worse by raising interest rates because they think that is the way to halt inflation. That would only work if the inflation is caused by too much money chasing too few resources, then raising interest rates would (in theory) dampen demand.

But that's not the cause of this inflation, is it? It's soaring energy prices, problems with the supply chain (anyone noted the huge lorry queues at Dover?) and war in Ukraine.

And, as has really been noted already on this thread, it is the poor, and the people who are just about managing to live a fairly comfortable life style who are going to be hardest hit. The moderately well off (i.e, those with a substantial cash buffer) and above are going to be able to absorb increased costs.

Riverwalk Wed 04-May-22 10:53:26

£5 of the £25 steak will be VAT.

Blondiescot Wed 04-May-22 10:58:34

Think inflation is bad here in the UK? Try living in Turkey, where it's currently running at more than 54% - oh, and wages are far lower than here too.

Kate1949 Wed 04-May-22 11:02:59

Our children and grandchildren like to go to pricey restaurants regularly, not just for special occasions. It's what they like to do. They work hard and can afford it so why not.
We don't eat out often but if we do, its usually cheap and cheerful. The last one was Wetherspoons. A toasted panini for me, small all day breakfast for DH, two large glasses if wine £13 ish the lot. It was lovely. Each to their own.