Getting The Best Deals Around

There was once a time when we got a bill through the post and we paid it without question. We wouldn’t even consider that there might just be a better deal for us out there if we looked, and so we stayed with the same suppliers for all our services and supplies. But as times have been tough, we’ve learnt to count the pennies and to shop around. It no longer pays to stay with the same suppliers, whether it be for our gas and electric, our mobile phones, our credit cards, and even for our weekly shop. If you want to get  the best deal around now, it’s probably cheaper to switch.

Mobile Phones

For many of us, our phone is our lifeline, not just there to make calls and send messages, but also there for our social media, our emails, as a gallery of our family photos, or just somewhere to watch  You Tube when we have a spare few minutes.

But in order to get the best from our mobile, we need to look for the best mobile phone deals. We all have different needs from our network, so using a reputable online comparison site, you can find the best deals, tariffs and plans for you. You can look at the cost per month, the amount of data and minutes in the deal, and how long you are going to be tied into the deal. Then you can make an informed decision as to the very best package to suit your lifestyle and your needs.

Gas and Electric

You should be looking for capped offers on your utilities in order to save money, and if this means moving supplier, then you should definitely do it. Capped offers are good because your bill will not change even if the cost of gas and electric does nationally, although you are also locked in if it goes down (which frankly it never seems to be.)

Some utility companies may also offer you an introductory offer that may be cheaper, or there may be a cash back offer for moving, so it is well worth checking out all the options.

Credit Cards

If you have a high balance on your current credit card, then you may be able to save quite a bit of money by switching to a no interest on balance transfers deal on a new card. You often find that much of the money you think you are paying off, is actually being swallowed up in interest, so a balance transfer with no interest could mean that you start to pay off some of the balance.


This is probably the no brainer of the tips and one which many of you are already doing, but switching to a budget supermarket will save you money on your weekly shop. If you feel you don’t want to leave all your brands behind, then try to switch most of your shop. I still buy tea, coffee, coca cola and brown sauce at Sainsbury, but I can pretty much get everything else at Lidl or Aldi.

How will you get the best deal go further this Autumn?

The King And I Is Launched At The Alexandra

This year, The Alexandra Theatre in Birmingham will be hosting the ultimate in classic musicals when ‘The King and I’ opens in December. The show will have an all star cast, with Jose Llana reprising his Broadway role as the King, and West End star Annalene Beechey once again playing Anna. Last week I went along to the official launch, where we were treated to live performances of some of those wonderful songs in the Alex’s lovely Piano Bar, and learned a little about the show.

There is a lot of excitement about this show coming to Birmingham, as Jose explained that the script has returned to the original script, from before the success of the 1950s film, in order to bring some of the politics back to the fore, that Anna is almost invited to Siam as a foreigner as a way of warding off a foreign invasion. In this way, the story still has a great relevance today.

Both Jose and Anna remembered the film from when they were children and say that is one of the things that continues to draw people to the show. It is a family show that does span the generations and older generations like to watch and share it with their own children and grandchildren.

Of course, there is also the opulence of the show, and, in particular, of the ‘Shall We Dance’ dress. There was artwork showing the design of the dress, which is spectacular, weighing in at 3 stone. Annelene has to get ready in the wings for this scene as the dress will not fit into the dressing room, she has christened the dress Bertha, and says it is weighted in the hem so it dips and lifts effortlessly in the scene.

A huge part of The King and I are the children of the King. In this performance they range from aged 6 upwards and have to travel with the show. Jose explained that the children join the cast before each show for the vocal warm up, that they are true professionals. Annalene agreed and said the children seem to make the adults behave better both on and off the stage.

The King and I opens in Birmingham on December 10th 2019.

For ticket information click here.

Reviewed: Paperscapes London By Sandra Lawrence

The Paperscapes series of books combine two of my passions, architecture and books. Paperscapes are a series of books that look at the major architectural achievements of major cities of the world, and then combine written information about each building, with a pop out of the building. Once the paper around each building has been removed, you get an amazing city scape of the city.

My book is Paperscapes London, the story of the architecture of our capital city. Others in the series include New York and Paris, and there are also Paperscapes editions that cover other topics, like animals. Each book is beautifully presented in hard back. On the internal cover, there are instructions on how to turn your book into a cityscape. There is then a page for each monument, building or landmark. The buildings chosen for London range from Westminster Abbey and The Tower of London, up to the Lloyds of London building and Canary Wharf, and, most recently The Shard, so there is a real span from the historical to the ultra modern. There are also more unusual monuments including a red telephone box and the traffic light tree.

On each page there is information about when the building was first built, where exactly you can find it, the architect and the height. You can also find out some interesting facts and information about each building.

These books are just beautiful, they make a really classy gift for someone who is visiting London, someone who loves travel, and any architect buff. With Christmas just around the corner, these would make a lovely present that really thinks outside the box and gives a gift that will be treasured forever.

Paperscapes London, Andre Deutsch publishing.

Cost £20 from Carlton Books.

Click here to view this and other Paperscapes editions