This morning, I paid £3.42 for a packet of Nurofen. I was desperate - I had a headache and had to pop out to the local garage to buy them - but the price still left me reeling. It was ten times what the supermarket own brand costs! Daylight robbery! It cured the headache, but left me wondering about the price of convenience.
How many times have I opted for the convenient option when, with a little bit of planning, I could have had something better for cheaper? The Nurofen is a case in point - I normally carry a packet of supermarket own-brand Ibuprofen with me, but I'd run out and forgotten to replace it. What about the times when I've forgotten a book to read on the Tube and bought a magazine, getting an expensive second-rate reading fix? Or buying a bottle of water, when I could easily have brought a (refilled) bottle from home?
We all do it, often without thinking about it. These are the little things that eat away at your budget. You waste your money on the unimportant things and then it's all gone before the important stuff occurs. I heard a great quote today - I wish I could remember who said it, so that I could look it up - about it being the accumulation of $3 purchases that make you bankrupt. That's the price of convenience.