When you hear chronic illness, you probably do not automatically think of money. However, one thing I have learnt is being chronically ill has become really expensive. Less physical ability to work, multiple trips to see specialists miles away from home, special dietary foods with premium price labels, prescriptions and special skin products all add up. If you are or know someone chronically ill and are trying to save the pennies like me, I hope this short guide to save money with a chronic illness can be of help.
8 Ways to Save Money with a Chronic Illness
- Cashback Sites & Coupons
I use to think cashback sites use to sound to be good to be true and I didn’t want to spend ages trying to find coupons. Once, I gained experience in Online Marketing function I realised – I was so wrong. If you are not accustomed to how cash back sites work, I will get you up to speed. You make a purchase by being referred to a company website by affiliate and you receive a % of cash back stated on your order. A popular cashback site is Top Cash Back but there are also apps like Honey that automatically add on the best valid coupon to your order.
2.Make an Amazon Wish List
I am not sure how successful an Amazon wish list be for everyday objects you need but if you are a chronically ill student who needs books or are thinking about fundraising for charity – setting one up is definitely worth a shot. I set up a public Amazon Wish List for Art Materials a couple weeks ago to make pieces that I will eventually sell online to fundraise for Ehlers Danios Support U.K. I am overwhelmed that I raised a lot of art materials donations from my wish list.
All you need is an Amazon account and make your page public and make your address hidden to the public but shared with third party vendors. On settings you can ask for Amazon to remove an item once it has been purchased to avoid duplicate purchases. However, you can still see what has been bought off your list by selecting purchase off the filter button.
The only things I would raise of caution is as these are ‘gifts’ you won’t necessarily know who sent them to say thank you unless they contact you directly or delivery waits or times. Also, if a product is not suitable you don’t tend to get an invoice so it cannot easily be exchanged – so make sure the products on your wish list are the right specifications.
3.Set a Budget
I know that dreaded B word but if you make a budget you will have a clearer idea of your in goings and outgoings. You can make mini budgets on a large budget with sections on Excel. The benefit of this is by using formulas you can easily adjust your budget. If you do not have savvy computer skills don’t worry you can find templates online quite easily or find budgeting apps.
4.Purchase a Prepayment NHS card
If you are in the U.K and require multiple repeat prescriptions a prepayment NHS card will definitely save you money. A single prescription costs £8.80 a pop unless you are 19 years old or under and in full-time education. However, the good news is you can from a card that costs £29.10 for 3 months if you cannot afford to pay £104 per annum for exemption.
5.Utilise Hospital Services
Okay, I will admit this one is a little bit trickier. Although, if you are on benefits or earn a low wage you may be able to claim travel expenses back from your hospital visits. If you are on benefits you just need to take proof of benefits, evidence of your receipt of travel and get the ward you see to fill out a form and asked where to take it on the day of your visit. If you are on a low wage it is a bit more difficult you have to send off for the refund I think it is called a H1 form. I was so poorly at the time, I didn’t go through this whole process but I regret it as it can save you a lot of money.
Another way to save money is to use NHS patient transport services. Please note you will not be eligible due to financial reasons alone. You must also be ready 4 hours prior to your appointment and may have to wait up to 90 minutes after it has finished. However, if you have a physical disability that means you cannot walk very far or drive – this service is a life saver.
6.Purchase a National Rail Card / Apply for a Blue Badge
You can save a 1/3 of ticket prices with a railcard. I purchased a 16-25 years old railcard which cost £30 for the year but now you can also get a millennial railcard for the same price! There are also other types of railcards, like a disability railcards but these seem to have strict rules, so you must check if you are eligible. You can also buy your railcard and have it displayed on the app if you purchase it online. My phone always dies so I did not opt for this option. Before you can get your railcard you will need a passport photo or edit out the background in your image.
You can also apply for disabled parking permit for £10 per annum through your local council. The permit can help you find a spot car parks that are closer to where you want to go – that are full in normal spots and may be cheaper.
7.Set up Direct Debits
If you set up standing orders monthly you know that money will be taken out and it will help you budget. Things you may want to set up standing orders for are like utility and mobile phone bills.
8. Enquire about Subsidise School Meals
If you have children getting free or subsidised school meals if you are on a low income can help make sure your children do not go hungry whilst you save money. You usually will just need to provide evidence of your household income per year.
So, there we have it guys. If you think my post can help anyone I would love it you shared it to spread the love.I would also love to hear your thoughts on how you save money, with a chronic illness (or without) if you have stumbled across my post but aren’t unwell.
My next post will be 10 Ways to Earn Money with a Chronic Illness.
Lots of Love,
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