The UK cost of living crisis is hitting hard and fast. People all across the country are having to drastically rethink their retail habits in the wake of rapidly rising prices affecting everything from groceries to fuel.
Fears of millions having to choose between heating and eating for their families this winter has defined headlines for many weeks. The latest revelation from a Conservative government scrambling to keep faith from its constituents has only cemented the shift in consumer behaviour.
Thriftiness has become the word of the day for many families feeling the pinch. Shoppers have abandoned their usual brands and outlets like Tesco and Morrison’s for more cost-effective options like Aldi and Lidl.
In the wake of Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-budget too, we have all witnessed the pound fall to record lows against foreign currency, including the US dollar. In fact, at the time of writing this article the current exchange would net you a meagre $1.033 for a pound – the first time it has dipped so low in our history.
Kwarteng Mini-Budget Fallout
Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng has announced a series of additional tax cuts on top of a £45 billion package he announced in his ‘mini-budget’ on Friday (23/09/22). His plans were set amid predictions that borrowing in the UK could be about to surge as interest rates escalate to their highest levels in years.
Some economic experts predict the Bank of England may call an emergency meeting as soon as this week to raise rates, to help stem a fall in the pound and calm high inflation. The pound’s fall however has been a steady process as faith in the British economy weakens. Recent events have only driven it home.
Will the Budget Affect Vaping?
How this could impact vaping products like e-liquids and devices is yet to become clear, although it can be safely assumed that duties on many goods including vapes and tobacco products could increase even more.
This assumption is based on the sudden drop in the pounds strength, which will mean importing of any goods from other economies will inevitably cost more, particularly if bought against the US dollar. Unfortunately for vapers, almost all devices come from China and are typically bought using US dollars.
Thankfully e-liquids like our 50-50 and HVG ranges are all made in the UK, and we will still be able to offer LiQuid customers the same great price of £1 per 10ml bottle. We will have to wait and see how economists manage the remaining fallout of the budget’s reveal.
UK Consumers want a Cheaper Option
The cost-of-living crisis has driven shoppers away from their usual big name brands – even those famed for affordability like ASDA and Tesco. In the wake of the aforementioned economic chaos, people are scrambling to save money wherever they can.
Aldi Is Now Britain’s 4th Largest Supermarket
The boss of Aldi has announced today (26/09/22) that hoppers have been flocking to his stores in droves. UK Chief Exec Giles Hurley told the BBC that Aldi has gained more than 1.5 million customers in 12 weeks.
This means the discounter has overtaken Morrisons to become the UK’s fourth largest supermarket chain, an upset that many saw coming as the financial clouds gathered earlier this year. Mr Hurley said of the shift:
"We're seeing customers switch in their droves," he said. "Customers are prioritising value like never before and switching their shopping to Aldi." Saying that shoppers from "all of the traditional full-price supermarkets" were coming through Aldi’s doors.
"We haven't seen growth rates like this since the last recession," said Mr Hurley, referring to the recession in 2008-2009 that shook the country to its core.
UK Bargain Hunting
The BBC reports that private label ranges now make up 51% of sales vs branded products. Sales of the cheapest of these ranges are up by one third compared to last year.
There’s one brand you can count on to hold fast throughout the coming financial storm – and that’s us! Here at Liquid we promise to any of our customers who might be worried their favourite vapes will suddenly shoot up in price – we are, and always will be £1 – budget be damned!
We will continue to work closely with our suppliers to maximise quality and minimise cost to you all so you can enjoy premium vaping products even when times are tight.