January 18, 2010 / 11:41 AM / 9 years ago

UK cold snap means woolly sweaters and bill woes

LONDON (Reuters Life!) - Freezing temperatures in Britain in the last few weeks have left many people worried about paying their energy bills, a survey revealed on Monday.

British consumer magazine Which? (www.which.co.uk) said about two-thirds of the 1,066 consumers it polled have been piling on the woolens and thinking more about their energy bills because of the recent freezing weather.

More than a third (38 percent) said they were worried about paying their energy bills this month.

Some people confessed to dipping into their own — or their children’s — savings to make sure they could afford to pay the bills, while some cut back on spending in other areas, sacrificing gym memberships or holidays.

More than half said they were wearing more clothes to keep heating bills to a minimum and almost a third (31 percent) had either switched energy provider or called to check they were on the cheapest tariff. Three people even admitted to making love to stay warm.

As the cold snap is set to continue, Which? also looked at the actions people took to stay warm during cold weather and discovered the following top five.

1. Put on extra clothes (84 percent)

2. Had a warm drink (73 percent)

3. Had a filling meal (40 percent)

4. Blocked draughts under doors/ windows (39 percent)

5. Stayed in bed (37 percent)

Reporting by Paul Casciato, Editing by Steve Addison

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