How much does the UK spend on payday?

er all our hard work the past 30 or so days.

OK, so maybe not mountains of cash for the majority, but it seems like most of us certainly like to spend as if it is. According to a new survey from the alternative banking folks at Suits Me, the average person splurges 21% of their monthly disposable income on payday, which averages out at £132 per person across the UK.

So, if you’re spending big the moment your pay packet touches your account, you’re certainly not alone. But what else do we get up to on payday? 

Our most popular spends

According to the report, there are some fairly common culprits for our payday spending. Leading the charge is the evening’s takeaway, with 41% of those surveyed admitting to getting something tasty in as their first spend. Those straying out of their home for food and drink aren’t too far behind, however, with meals out and drinks out in joint second at 37% a piece. In terms of more permanent purchases, new clothes, beauty or grooming products and shoes take up the next three spots, attracting 28%, 24% and 23% of spenders respectively.

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Other notable focuses of spending in the survey included home furnishings (22%), limited edition products and video games (both 10%). Interestingly, and perhaps rather damningly, PT sessions bookended the popularity table with takeaways, but only 9% of payday spenders chose the fitter (but decidedly less delicious) route.

Who’s spending what?

Unsurprisingly, London is the area boasting the highest average payday spend in the UK at £163. Perhaps more surprisingly, it’s Scotland in a very close second with an average of £162, easily outpacing the £150 spent in Northern Ireland and the £142 spent in Wales. As for the thriftiest of the UK bunch, it would appear those in the South West are most sensible with their money, with an average of only £99 leaving the accounts of locals.

One of the most interesting finds of the survey lies in the gender split, which found that men (19.9%) are spending almost double the amount as women (11.6%) on designer clothing and almost the same (16.9% to 17.4%) on beauty products and treatments. Some of the more bizarre purchases of individual respondents included a Vatican City stamp for £500, a duck-adorned pillow for £70 and a lump of silver for £1,500.

With some of the items above in mind, perhaps those of us getting takeaways shouldn’t feel too guilty about their payday spending after all.

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