Global Prices Are Rapidly Rising
Some of the world’s biggest economies are currently experiencing an inflation of sorts. In the United Kingdom, the prices of food and fuel are surging, and inflation rate has risen to 9.1%, the highest that the country has experienced in 40 years. In the United States, inflation recently hit 8.6% – the last time this happened there was December 1981 – and the price of gas has continued to rise at an alarming rate, with the average cost of a gallon now over $5.
There are several reasons for the current situation. The patterns of supply and consumption were significantly altered by the COVID-19 pandemic, causing many businesses to effect upward reviews of the prices of products and services. The Russia-Ukraine war has also adversely affected the supply of gas and petroleum products on a global scale. The point is, pockets all round the world are hurting, and it could get worse before it gets better.
The Nigerian Situation
In Nigeria, the prices of commodities seem to go up by the minute. A loaf of bread that currently costs N500 could go for N700 next week. Inflation currently sits at 17%, service providers regularly have to review their prices due to increasing cost of production, and everyone is feeling the brunt.
Electricity tariffs have been on an upward surge for a while: consumers who bought power at N50.72/kWh in January 2022 were to pay N54.22/kWh from February. The cost of purchasing a 12.5kg cylinder of household cooking gas in Nigeria has increased from N7,000 in September 2021 to N9,400, as at May 31, 2022. Abuja and parts of Lagos are witnessing the gradual return of long fuel queues, and for consumers of these products, there’s a lot of uncertainty as to how much more of their spending power will be eroded in the coming months.
How You Can Save Money
There is no way to know when things will get better, so the best thing to do for now is to adapt. It’s important to be deliberate about power consumption and use of gas. Here are a few ways to cut down on costs:
- Turn off and unplug what you aren’t using: By leaving things around your house plugged in and turned on when you aren’t using them, you’re driving up your electric bill unnecessarily. You can start by turning off lights when you aren’t in the room or when it’s light enough outside to rely solely on natural light.
- Buy energy-efficient gadgets: If you have the means, ensure that the models for your gadgets are the energy-efficient ones. For instance, non-energy-efficient bulbs are cheaper to purchase, but they become more expensive in the long run to use. This is because they consume far more power than energy-saving bulbs. Also, the ceiling fan is one of the home’s highest passive power consumers, and you might not know it, but your fan practically runs all day and night, which significantly impacts your power bills.
- Insist on prepaid meter: To regulate electricity consumption, it’s a lot better for you to have prepaid meters for your homes or business offices. This is because unlike estimated billing, you can keep track of what you spend on electricity monthly. This helps you to plan your budget properly. With prepaid meters, you only pay for what you use. Your prepaid meter stops reading the moment there is no power supply, and it starts reading the moment power is restored.
- Smart regulation: Install smart switches or sensors that can automatically turn lights on or off when in use and not in use.
How Paga Can Help You Save Costs
As Nigeria’s leading payment solutions provider, Paga is easy to use, it is secure, and transactions are conducted speedily. Here are the ways through which Paga ensures that you can regulate your expenses and save costs on electricity.
- Multiple Options: Paga allows you to pay utility bills, purchase prepaid airtime, pay for subscription services as well as internet bundles, and make payments to retailers. You can sort out your cable TV, internet subscription and electricity bills with Paga’s smooth bill payment service. The platform currently caters to payments for DStv, GOtv, Smile, and Spectranet.
- Recurring Payments: A recurring payment is designed to take away the burden of initiating a regular payment while ensuring you do not miss the payment. It is simple to set up. To do this:
- Log into your Paga account
- Select “recurring payments” from the list of services
- Create a new recurring payment
- Select the service you want to create a recurring payment for
- Fill out the details of the recipient/beneficiary
- Set up the schedule and fill all required fields
- Review the details and confirm the transaction.
Opening a Paga account is pretty easy. To get started, click here to download the Paga app on your device, then click on ‘Sign Up’, and follow the instructions from there.
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