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          hoy there and welcome aboard to 2023 (the sequel to 2022)! 
This voyage has everything… inflation, rate rises, TikTok, power and gas bill surges, an ever-looming recession and recovery from a global pandemic. What fun life has become!

In December 2022, inflation rose to 7.8%.1 To give you context on how rare this has been in the past few decades, the last time inflation rose this high was the year we were introduced to a young Macaulay Culkin as Kevin McCallister in Home Alone (aka, 1990).2  With interest rates predicted to continue to increase into 20233, we thought now would be a great time to explore the cost-of-living issues further and see if we could give Aussies some hope in this glum climate. To get started, we commissioned YouGov to conduct a national survey of 2,000 Aussies to see how they feel about their current financial position, and what they’ve done to try and save their hip-pocket.

Arriving At Lost  Lagoon

When it comes to the current power market, Aussies really aren’t feeling much power to save their pennies. When we asked those surveyed what household expenses they were most concerned about managing over the next 12 months, energy was the second highest response behind groceries.4   

Some of you may be wondering why the energy and gas market is such an issue at the moment. The world is going through a global energy crisis. Energy market pressures aren’t new, but with the addition of extreme weather events, hampered supply chains due to the pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, energy issues have become a full-blown crisis. As a response to Russia's actions, a number of governments around the world, including Australia5 have stopped trading with Russia, who happens to be one of the top producers of fossil fuels and natural gas in the world.6 So, should we give up hope now?

Yo-ho-ho (according to a pirate terminology site this is ‘17th century slang’ meaning ‘cool’, ‘lit’ or ‘fire’…)So, yo-ho-ho, am I right?!

Although the electricity market is in dire straits, there are clearly ways to make the best out of a bad situation, and that could be by switching your plan or provider to see if some of those lost savings can be found. Now you know what to do to master Power Mountain, let’s head across the mountain to the tricky terrain of Vehicle Volcano.

Let’s be honest, no one likes paying for the upkeep of their car.
Between our registration payments, car maintenance and unstable petrol costs, there is already enough to spend on our cars. Unfortunately similar to the energy market, Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine has caused havoc on our petrol prices. In February 2023 the price of crude oil broke through the $US100-a-barrel mark, reaching $US139, a level that has not happened since 20087 (aka the year when cinematic trilogy High School Musical said farewell on the big screen).

Unsurprisingly, when we asked our respondents what household expenses they were most concerned about managing over the next 12 months, the 3 top concerns were groceries (52%), energy (45%) and petrol (40%).4 
Considering the cost of petrol doesn’t seem to be stabilising any time soon, what could you do to save a buck on the cost of your car?
According to our research, of the Aussie households who switched their car insurance in the last 12 months, 79% said they saved money.4  

Touring Vehicle Volcano

Scouring Cellular City

Coasting through Curative Cove

We’re finally here, plundering (looting) the booty (treasure) without having ended up in Davy Jones’s Locker (surely you get the gist by now?).

Between hearing about the cost of living, inflation and world events, it can seem like there is no winning in this current economic climate. Luckily, through our journey to this Lost (savings) Lagoon, it’s clear that there are ways you could save money that don’t include sacrificing the things that let you enjoy life. Instead, we have found that it can be beneficial to review your grudge purchases, because although you may need them, it doesn’t mean you have to settle. With up to an estimated $18.7 billion in missing savings, it’s time to break out the shovel (computer/phone) and get digging for your own buried treasure (lost savings).4

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In amazing news, our research suggests that Aussie households could potentially find savings of up to $3.2 billion a year by switching their electricity plan or provider and up to $1.5 billion a year by switching their gas plan or provider.

Investigating Power Mountain

You could find yourself an annual average saving of about $331 on your car insurance.4

We also discovered that pirates might be right when it comes to mutiny. Our research suggests that Aussie households could be losing out on $1.8 billion in savings a year by remaining loyal to the same car insurance plan or provider.4 Accordingly, the 43% of respondents who have stayed on the same car insurance policy for more than 5 years, could be losing out on finding their own lost savings.4 

Are you with the 43% who have let their car insurance policy roll over year by year? If so, it may be worthwhile reviewing your current car insurance policy and seeing if there is a better deal out there.
With Vehicle Volcano ready to erupt with your new lost savings, we will continue our journey  through the choppy seas to Cellular City.

Broadband is the rare grudge purchase that actually makes us happy. Working from home? Sorted. Streaming the newest Netflix series? Done. Having something to lord over your kids to get them to clean the house? No problem! That’s the magic of broadband.

Although, the average Aussie may not know when the peak times of usage are, or what Mbps means, they do know when their broadband connection is working for them and when it may not be living up to its full potential. Consequently, shopping for broadband can mean shopping for value over savings. For example, when we asked our respondents who had switched their broadband plans in the past 12 months whether they had saved, 30% said they got better value but didn’t save more money.4 In the wise words of the historical figure Captain Jack Sparrow ‘not all treasure is silver and gold, mate’ and that’s true enough, especially when it comes to broadband value (we realised we hadn’t referenced our pirate theme in a while, so here you go).

However, if saving is what you’re after then have no fear, because most Aussie households surveyed (60%) that switched their broadband in the last 12 months said they saved money, with an average annual saving of $587.4 

Our research also suggests that Aussie households could potentially find savings of up to a whopping $4.1 billion a year by switching their Broadband.4

Therefore, before we hit the open waters and sail to go and gain some medicinal care at Curative Cove, it may be a good idea to consider whether you’ve got some lost savings to find with your own broadband plan.  

Welcome to our final stop on our journey before we hit the Lost Lagoon, shiver me timbers, we’re close!

Although paying for health insurance can be a (major) grudge purchase, it can be helpful, especially in uncertain times. After the past few years we’ve had (we’re talking about you COVID), it makes sense that Aussies are craving some form of stability in their health care.  In December 2022, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) found that COVID-19 interferences had led to the lowest number of public surgeries performed in over a decade.8  Why is this relevant? Well, with the uncertainty of the past few years and the current state of the elective surgery waitlist, private health insurance can assist in getting you seen faster and of course, give you peace of mind.9

If you’re an Aussie with health insurance, but are considering giving it the flick it may be worthwhile seeing if you can switch and save instead.


In our research, we found that most Aussie households surveyed (63%) that switched their health insurance in the last 12 months said they saved money, with an annual average saving of around $520.4

When it comes to overall lost savings, it was suggested that Aussie households could potentially find, savings of up to $2.5 billion a year by switching their health Insurance plan or provider.4

With the current financial climate, it makes sense that when purchases don’t appear to give quick, or obvious returns on investment they can be the first to be given the ol’ heave ho. However, with our data suggesting that there is a lot of missing savings to be found, it could be good to see if you can have your cake and eat it too and get a good deal first.


Let's Begin

So, with this said, how can Aussie households find their lost savings to see if they can turn their deteriorating quality of life to plundered pleasure...

So arghhhhh you next?

  1. ABS found here 
  2. Yahoo News found here
  3. The Guardian found here
  4. iSelect commissioned YouGov Limited to conduct a national online survey between 8 December and 13 December. The sample is n=2,000 Australian sole/joint household decision makers aged 18 years and older, with data weighted by state and household size.
  5. Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade found here 
  6. Forbes found here 
  7. Sydney Morning Herald found here
  8. Australian Government - Australian Institute of Health and Welfare found here
  9. ABC found here = "hidden"