Ever wondered if you could purchase anything decent for under a pound in the UK? Do you think that we are rip off Britain,  well we have sent two researchers of around the world to see what they can buy for 80 Pence, there's nothing quite like playing FTSE underneath the table.
US Dollar (USD) $1.29 = 80p
Everyone in the world (yes everyone ;-) knows New York is a world-class destination.  For the romantics it's synonymous with strolls in Central Park or Breakfast at Tiffany's. Whilst for the ladies it's a fantasy like girlie weekend of secretly feeling like you're on the set of Sex & The City. Indulging in the shopping, whilst wearing your Manolo heels (not!) getting “Carrie”'d away with long lunch girlie chit chats or sipping on a cosmopolitan in some swanky Manhattan bar..... Sounds fun right?
My reality – wearing clothes from Primark, flip flops (albeit Haviana's), drinking a freebie hotel coffee, lunch at KFC, whilst shopping at Jacks 99c store.  I've had to dispel the fantasy, all in the name of 'Around the World on 80p'.
That said, I still absolutely love New York especially in the sunshine – by day the hustle and bustle of shoppers, street vendors and performing artists and by night the coolest, funkiest or highly cultured bars. Checkout 
or an insider's guide to NY, including freebies!
As mentioned earlier, I had to limit my shopping to Jacks 99c Store, not dissimilar to UK's Poundland, just a little cheaper.  What's fascinating about the streamline of big Dollar stores is, before the market meltdown of 2008 the appeal was mainly to poor or low-waged people but now it's created a fear-induced pleasure where the those who have money feel they don't, or soon won't, so they take pride in their selective bargain hunting! 
For me, once I waded through the cheap tat, the "what do you do with that" items and even a few overpriced items....  There were plenty of savings to be had, I picked up my necessities!;-)
Such as:
1kg Chamomile Epson Salts (perfect for those aches and pains and aids a good nights sleep)
5oz Cayenne Pepper (quite hard to find cheap in the UK, natural remedy for sore throats and colds)
5oz Cajun Spices
Gym wear: leggings and bra top
Set of four stylish tea coasters
'As Seen on TV' Bra clips!
And a big bag of liquorice, my favourite!
You could also purchase a vast array of housewares, toiletries, food, cleaning products, small items of clothing and accessories.  You name it, you'll find it – most of which, compared to the UK, was definitely better value.
You only need to observe the popularity of websites such as Groupon, Vouchercodes, Vouchermania etc. to know saving is once again en vogue, but even I, the princess of bargain hunting, couldn't help but feel just a tinge of guilt, for my purchases, did I really need them? I questioned whether I was simply appealing to my media fuelled financial anxiety or if I’d fallen prey to the new consumerism – super saving, yet still spending? You decide......
dawne b stewart
Twitter: @dawneb007

Article by Dawne B / 3rd October 2012


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Around the World on 80p