Britain Loves a BargainAntique TV programmes
Stop the average Brit – gent or lady – in their tracks, and demand to know their ambitions, and two things will startle you. Firstly, that 99.3 per cent of the time their prime ambition is to become unimaginably rich – just a quid a week on the lottery, or through a chance discovery in the attic. A revelation which links completely seamlessly to our love of TV programmes about antiques – the finding and selling of which is probably the ultimate “get rich quick” scheme.
There’s nothing to dislike about these shows. The soundtracks are plinky plonky and cheerful, the experts are ruddy cheeked, loud and never anything less than enormously over-enthusiastic. And if there’s a more heart-warming sight in the world than watching a confused buyer with a dusty old plate suddenly discovering that she’s a millionaire, we have yet to see it.
On the downside, it can convince you that every single car boot sale is secretly an Aladdin’s Cave. This isn’t really the case.
On the topic of bargain hunting, check out our deal of the week at www.t-mobile.co.uk/shop/deal-of-the-week
Join in the conversation at www.facebook.com/TMobileUK
By Joshua Burt
Britain Loves a BargainLiving off of freebies
We’ve all been there. A week before payday, the cupboard is bare and your bank account has never looked so bleak. The only thing that will get you through the tough times is tracking down some freebies…
Get yourself a free new ‘do by being a hair model at your local hairdressers.
Embrace your inner Ray Mears and get foraging in the wilderness for a tasty snack. Blackberries, nettles, seaweed and shellfish are all nutritious freebies.
Swap your clothes online at www.bigwardrobe.com and get a whole new outfit (or two) for nothing.
Review your local shops, restaurants and pubs for Marketforce and get free food and drinks.
Take advantage of free samples and blag yourself everything from free teabags to miniature perfume tester bottles.
Cycle or walk to work, cut petrol costs and reduce your carbon footprint.
Join your local library and take advantage of the free books on offer.
Join your local www.freecycle.org group and swap your unwanted belongings for something useful.
Britain Loves a BargainUnlimited free texts forever when you top up £10 a month
Watch as once again we bring together the weird and wonderful things Britain loves in a Jubilee special!
All this in the name of another great Bargain from T-Mobile — now when you top up £10 a month you’ll get unlimited FREE texts forever!
To get your FREE SIM text ‘Unlimited’ to 66008 and for more of what Britain loves, news and our latest deals, join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TMobileuk
Britain Loves a BargainFree cup of tea at Piccadilly Records
Here at T-Mobile we love a bargain. We also love a cup of proper British tea (as pictured above by Nathan Jones) and some real music, so it doesn’t get much better than a free cup of Yorkshire Tea all day Saturday at Manchester’s independent record shop Piccadilly Records does it?
Get down to Piccadilly Records tomorrow for your free cuppa and some great music.
Tell us how you get on at www.facebook.com/Tmobileuk
Britain Loves a BargainBargain bragging
Britain loves boasting about bargains. As a nation we’re never happier than when we’re elbow deep in a sale bin, rummaging for that marked down must-have or browsing the web for the deal of the decade. But, once we’ve bagged our bargain it doesn’t stop there. Full of sale-based smugness we can twirl about in our 75% off dress or show off our shiny new gadget (complete with free bundled accessories) and revel in the attention from our slightly jealous mates.
Before the internet the best bragging we could accomplish was in our social circle. Occasionally we could extend the boasting to include work chums, a few bargain crusaders might even have gone as far as to tip a fellow shopper off, but then the fun would be over. Now we can share our deal-spotting prowess with the world online and we love it!
Bargain forums and websites are packed full of shoppers sharing their best buys with fellow discount hunters, showing off their cut price finds with all the pride a mum might reserve for her first born. Through sites like Hotukdeals.com you can even rate other people’s bargains. Adding heat to a deal increases its temperature. The more heat, the hotter your bargain! You have to be quick though. The hottest deals often get snapped up quickly leading to empty shelves and sad shoppers.
Then there’s Moneysavingexpert.com, it’s a website packed full of sale snitches, tipping off their forum members to the latest discount deals. When a big sale starts, MSE users are queuing up early doors ready to swoop in and bag the lot ready for some serious boasting rights when they get home.
With sites like these attracting millions of users every month bargain bragging has almost become a national sport – probably because the rules are so simple. Snoop around for your deal, buy it, take a picture (including the receipt) and post to the bargain website of your choice. Then sit back and relax while other shoppers leg it to their local store to join in the fun.
Here are some brilliant bargains we’ve bagged:
£5 M&S navy blue dress - original price £45
£65 Next black leather jacket - original price £135
£20 Friends complete box set from Amazon - original price £99
£59 Mountain bike with lights, gloves and bike pump from Evans Cycles - original price £155
£12.50 Sanctuary Spa gift box - original price £50
Have you spotted a top deal? Are you are bargain bragger or do youkeep your best buys a secret? Tell us here www.facebook.com/tmobileuk
By Rebecca Lomax
Britain Loves a BargainPound shops
Like all truly brilliant ideas, it’s an incredibly simple one. Pound shops are one of the few places in the country where there is only one rule and it’s made clear from the outset. As far as shopping experiences go, a pound shop is the nearest you’ll get to an even playing field. But they are also crucibles of madness.
The knowledge that everything in the shop is the same price has a weird effect on the hardiest of consumers. A Pound Shop means everything is available and nothing is beyond your reach. All aisles are open to you. Presuming you are clutching the necessary gold nugget, you can buy anything in the shop. So of course you end up going completely off the rails.
A pound shop, the perfect excuse to buy things you neither need nor want. Which is obviously brilliant, the main drawback being that most of it is about as durable as a snowman in Egypt. In the merciless hands of a toddler, a pound shop toy has a lifespan that would make the average mayfly look like Hugh Hefner. And the adult merchandise is no sturdier. Batteries that run out after five minutes. Mug handles that drop off in your hand. Giant lighters that nearly set your head ablaze. All utterly disposable and, in most cases, utterly useless. But none of it matters. It only cost a quid. It’s the most ultimately liberating consumer experience: the excess of capitalism meets the conformity of communism in a gaudy hall of madly warped mirrors packed with an A - Z of everything you never knew you could have.
The book section is particularly noteworthy, “Get a life, they’re only a pound each”: Ricky Tomlinson, Nelson Mandela, Alan Titchmarsh, Cheryl Cole – the list goes on. You could walk home with the greatest minds of your generation in a carrier bag for a tenner and still have change for… well anything, really.
What’s the greatest thing you’ve bought in a pound shop? Tell us here www.facebook.com/tmobileuk
Britain Loves a BargainBritain’s best value breakfasts
Crispy bacon, perfectly cooked fried eggs and sizzling sausages; the ideal starting point for any great British breakfast. Additional ingredients vary depending on where you are in the country, but everyone agrees on one thing - nothing beats a fry-up. You can’t mess about with Britain’s favourite dish, so the only way to improve on a classic is to make it bigger (as pictured above by Ian Clarke). At T-Mobile we love a bargain, so here are five cafés plating up epic breakfasts to challenge your belly instead of your bank balance.
Jesters Diner, Southtown, Great Yarmouth
Could you eat £15 worth of food in under 60 minutes? Conquer the ‘kidz’ breakfast that’s been making headlines recently and you’ll get the feast for free. The monster meal includes twelve slices of bread, fourteen eggs, a dozen sausages and bacon rashers, plus potatoes, mushrooms, beans and more. Devouring this 9lbs of nosh will give you a ‘food baby’ to be proud of.
When any menu item is called ‘The Big One’ you know you’re in trouble. Weighing in at a whopping three kilos this meal is not for the faint hearted. The Hungry Hossee challenge includes burgers, potato waffles, potato scones and three different types of bread. In 2011 one man managed to eat this stodgy grease-fest in just 13 minutes. His reward? The £12 back that he paid for the breakfast.
Mario’s Café holds the official Guinness World Record title of ‘largest English breakfast commercially available’. At £10.95, the belly busting platter is laden with 10 eggs, 10 slices of buttered toast, ten rashers of bacon, ten sausages, baked beans, tomatoes, mushrooms and is topped off with five black puddings. Eat that lot within 20 minutes (without a drink) and you won’t pay a penny for the tasty treat. Bargain.
Apparently the home of the original ‘Gut Buster’, the all-nite café in Brighton has gone one better and now offers the ‘Mega Buster’ meal. At £7.50 this bargain basement breakfast will challenge the hungriest diner. As well as traditional fried fare they have thrown in burger and chips for extra value. Whether anyone could manage to eat all that at 6am is another matter.
Bikers Break, Neath Port Talbot
If you’re not up to the challenge of a record breaking spread then the Bikers Break bap might be more realistic. Could you put away two bacon rashers, two sausages, double black pudding, egg and beans all sandwiched in a roll? This bun seems modest in comparison, but at just £3.20 it’s not going to break the bank or your belt buckle.
By Rebecca Lomax
While we’re on the subject of big helpings at bargain prices, have you tried T-Mobile’s own Full Monty? Unlimited internet, unlimited texts and 2000 minutes per month to any network.
Britain Loves a BargainDiamond deals at car boot sales
That the British love a bargain is news to no one. Problem is, finding a bargain nowadays is no longer much of a challenge. Every High Street in the land is plastered with permanent SALE ENDS SOON signs. The virtual shelves of eBay and CraigsList are groaning with instantly clickable deals. Bargains?
We’ve got bargains flung in our faces (like in Chris Poolman’s Jeff Koons car boot sale pictured above) on a daily basis. No, what people want now is something beyond mere value for money. What we want now is treasure. We want the winning lottery ticket, the golden handshake, the pot of glory at the end of the rainbow. Thank heavens, then, for the British Car Boot Sale – the muddy road to Damascus that is littered with potentially priceless booty.
Everyone has heard of the 10 pence copper bangle plucked from the boot of a Ford Cortina in Wakefield that turned out to be a priceless Roman Antique. Or the long lost Picasso that was pulled from beneath a pile of imitation fur jackets on a trestle table in Taunton. These are the urban myths that fire our imaginations with starry-eyed optimism as we set off every Sunday to poke through other people’s unwanted possessions.
But be warned – there are no short cuts at a Car Boot. Digging for treasure can be hard work. You have to wade through a teetering mountain of junk, and you have to be double quick about it; clothes, shoes, tables, chairs, hat-stands, kennels, books, plates, cheese graters, budgie cages, guitars, mobile phones, garden hoses, ornaments, pans, cameras, paintings, books, scratched LPs, flood damaged toys – all must be scoured with the eye of a hawk. No pool of junk can remain unsifted if you’re serious about striking it rich at a Car Boot. And if you snooze, you lose. Be warned - a gaggle of pensioners can strip the rear compartment of a Volvo Estate clean faster than a shoal of hungry piranhas on a buffalo.
And you have to haggle.. Quibbles over chipped casserole dishes, drama over the price of a deep fat fryer, arguments over Abba CD’s – every Sunday, the school playing fields and disused car lots of Britain are alive with the heated debate of tatty commerce.
We’ve all clung to the faintest of hope that something glimmering beneath our everyday junk could, indeed, be gold. Buried deep amongst the mounds of oven gloves and wall clocks and half complete games of Buckaroo, the British Car Boot Sale keeps the flicker of that dream burning in our hearts.
Here’s our five favourite car boot bargains:
Dean Windass Bench: £5
Sparkly Blue Reindeer: £5
Little Robot: £7
Box of 7” records £2.50
Vintage car pictures £3
What are the best bargains you’ve ever found at a car boot sale? Tell us on our Facebook page
By Russ Litten