happy chippers

Lee is student loan free!

Meet Lee. She graduated from university in 2004 and has been giving up a large part of her wage to pay it off EVERY month, ever since. 

That's 14 years of being a slave to her Student Loan Company. 14 years! 

Now, with the help of Chip, Lee is finally free from her student debt. 

She got in touch with us to says thanks and tell us a little bit about her Chip journey...

So here it is...

"I was on the lookout for anything that could help me improve my saving when I came across Chip," Lee told us.

"I was drawn to the notion that Chip helps people save automatically and decided to give it a go.

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"I remember thinking, if this app gets rid of all that lingering debt it will change my life."

Surely enough, with a little patience and determination, Chip helped her to achieve her goal. 😎

Lee says what she loved most about her Chip journey was the automatic app's AI and the fact that for the first time she could really save up without having to think about it.

“I love the app, I love how easy it is to use. It’s a ‘set it and forget it’ system. The tone of the communications is great and engaging and I think the Chip team are doing a great job."

In fact, Lee loves Chip so much, she' already set up a brand new goal which she hopes to reach by next year. 🙌

“Since paying off my student loan, I’ve set up a new goal," she told us. "I’m starting my daughter at Stagecoach theatre school which isn’t cheap - so I have a goal in place to save the fees for that for the next year.”

Thanks so much for sharing your story Lee! Your Chip journey really made us all smile over here at Chip HQ.

In fact, every Chip story makes us happy, so don't be shy and send them our way. We love getting to know our savers and hearing about what Chip is helping them to achieve. 

If you've got a story you'd like to share with us, then drop us a line at hello@getchip.uk. 💌

 

Beth's Ibiza Weekender

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Meet Beth. Beth is 27 and works in TV. She lives in London and earns good money but she STILL struggles to stash money away every month. 

Why? Because let’s face it, spending is just more fun than saving!

The problem with that simple fact is, it leaves you with little money left over for emergencies, or in this particular case, spontaneous trips to the Med.

With a month to go, Beth downloaded Chip and (spoiler alert) she made it to Ibiza.

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This is how she made it happen…

I’ve always wanted to put a little away every month, but, especially over summer, I can easily spend my entire paycheck. Cue me desperately waiting for the next one to land in my account. 

Being so used to this routine, I was a little disappointed when my friends suggested an impromptu trip over to Ibiza for a weekend break. They were planning to go in just under two months time. Fantastic. 🙄

While I had enough left from my paycheck for flights and accommodation, it didn’t seem likely that I was going to be able to save up the £200 or so I’d need for spending money on the notoriously pricey island in such a small amount of time. It would also mean seriously cutting back for the next few weeks. 😤

When I asked the others how they were saving enough each month to be able to book a spontaneous weekend (and not a cheap one) at such late notice, one friend Alice told me she'd been saving up with Chip for a few months. 

Alice had put away more than enough for the entire break and claimed she hadn’t really noticed that she was saving over the course of four months. I'll admit I was intrigued but I also wasn’t sure how I was realistically going to save enough in time. 

I downloaded Chip anyway and set my save amount to the maximum level possible. (This means its clever algorithm stashes away as much as it feels it can do, into my Chip savings account.)

To be perfectly honest I was worried that the saves would be too much for my dwindling bank account to take — but I was pleasantly surprised. 

Even on the maximum save amount, Chip’s saves mirrored my regular spending. They were no more than a trip to the supermarket or picking up a few toiletries here and there. I never had to cancel a save! 

After a month and a half I’d saved up £150 and was no longer worrying about the weekend, I could just look forward to it. All thanks to Chip! 

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Even though the trip has been and gone, I've kept on using Chip.

I've lowered my save level and I'm putting away a little less each week, but i know I'll still have a healthy little present stash saved up in time for Christmas...

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The Big Chip Tee giveaway winners!

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We loved hearing about the ways Chip is helping you all live your best life and save for the things you want. There were so many wonderful stories it wasn't an easy task picking our winners. 

But here they are... the first batch of Chip tee owners!

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Meet Hamish. 

He's been using Chip to save up and support himself while he volunteers at a refugee camp in Greece. If anyone deserves a Chip tee, it's definitely Hamish!

This is what Hamish had to say about his Chip journey...

Using chip over the course of this year has enabled me to save up a surprising amount! I'm a Doctor working for the NHS but I'm taking a break from working in the UK to go and work in a refugee camp in Greece.

Chip has made saving effortless and it builds up really quickly. 

This is a voluntary post so I've been using Chip to help me put away the pennies to make sure I have enough to get out there and pay for accommodation too! Chip has made saving effortless and it builds up really quickly. Really pleased with the app! Thanks guys!

You're more than welcome Hamish! 

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Our second Chip tee winner is Nick. 

Nick got Chip to save up for his son's school cricket tour to Barbados. Fast forward a few months and he's not only saved up for the trip - he's booking his own holiday to Barbados too! 

Here's his Chip story...

'We’re going to Barbados for our school cricket tour!'

Imagine that as the first thing my son says coming home from school earlier this year. My first thought was, 'well you’re not going then', but that would be too harsh so my next thought was how expensive is that going to be?

£2400 it turns out. I only got to go to the Lake District for my school trips - he gets to go to Barbados for 10 days.

Anyway I have resigned myself to the expense and I'm using Chip to get me to save as much of the money as possible. It’s going pretty well on top of the monthly payments the school in their wisdom allows us to pay in.

It's going so well in fact I’ve decided I’m going to Barbados too and staying in a different hotel to him! I’m sure the Chip tee will look good by the pool as I sip rum and think about watching some cricket. Perfect 😊

 

That does sound perfect, we're glad we could help! 😍

In fact, there's nothing we love more here at Chip HQ than feeling like we're helping our savers get the most out their money. We want you to enjoy the things you really want in life so please do get in touch if you have a Chip story you'd like to tell us about!

And don't be too disappointed if you didn't bag yourself a tee... there will be tons more ways to get your hands on cool Chip sh*t coming soon.👊

Steph's summer abroad

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Meet Steph. As a student, she'd constantly struggled with saving.

Steph had always planned to go travelling around Europe after graduating but with expensive student loans to start paying off this was looking less and less likely.

That was, until she found Chip.

This is her story. 

Exploring Europe after finishing my degree was something I'd always wanted to tick off my bucket list. It wasn't until I was heading into my final year that I realised I was going to seriously struggle to afford it. 

Then, around October, I found out about Chip and decided to give it a go. Three months in and I couldn't believe how much I'd saved without even trying. After five months, I actually started planning my trip.

Chip's intelligent saving algorithm and adaptable saving level meant I never had to cancel a save. I was constantly building up my fund even when my bank balance was low. 

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I even had enough to rent a small camper van to drive along the Spanish coast, making unforgettable memories along the way. 

It's thanks to Chip that I was able to spend my last summer before going into full time work doing what I'd always dreamed of.

Thanks Chip. I really couldn't have done it without you! 

 

 

 

Tom's overdraft escape

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Meet Tom, he’s been struggling for years to get out of his overdraft.

He downloaded Chip to try and save a little extra each week before he discovered our amazing overdraft saving feature.

A year and a half later, Tom's overdraft is no longer holding him back and he's putting his weekly Chip saves towards the things he loves instead.

After reaching his goal and finding himself free from debt worry for the first time in a long time, he got in touch with us to say thanks. 

Here’s his story.

I’ve always hated missing out on things my friends are doing. Lads' holidays, nights out etc. So I’d do everything possible to keep up — even if this meant spending way out of my budget.

Not the smartest idea really, as I was racking up a pretty substantial amount of debt with most of my monthly income going towards rent and paying it off. 

A friend of mine had been saving up for a holiday with Chip and told me to give it a go. He said I wouldn’t really notice the saves and I’d finally be able to put away a little bit of cash each week. Great stuff!

After downloading the app I switched on overdraft saving and without even thinking about it, I was able to build up a healthy savings stash despite dipping in and out of my overdraft.

If you’d told me a year and a half ago that I’d have saved up for a new TV to watch the World Cup (and not just feel like I'm drowning in my overdraft), there’s no way I’d have believed you. But here I am. 

Thanks Chip!

Liv's adventure in Asia

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One of the best things about working at Chip is getting updates from our users. Hearing stories of how Chip has changed their life for the better always gets us smiling.

Meet Liv. She’s 27. A part-time nanny and Yoga instructor. 

Liv got Chip last year to save up for a holiday to Asia with her boyfriend. 

Not only did she reach her goal, she had such a good time that she got in touch to say thanks. She even sent us some super cute snaps from her hols. 

This is her story...

I was desperate to get away and have real break from London but wasn’t sure how I was going to save up for a two week holiday and keep doing the things I wanted to, like going out with my friends.

With 9 months to go, I downloaded Chip and started saving straight away. I can’t say I was completely confident the app alone would help me to reach my goal — but it certainly wasn’t going to do any harm, so I gave it a try. 

Little did i know! Three months in, I had already saved over a third of what I needed and started planning the trip. I even upped my Chip save amount to add in a visit to Cambodia after Thailand. For the first time my savings were opening up possibilities rather than closing doors! 

It sounds impossible, but I genuinely didn’t notice the money leaving my account. I’m prone to an impromptu supermarket stop or after work drink, and each Chip save fell into the same little affordable bracket.

Fast forward nine months and Josh and I set off on our merry way. We wanted to fit as much in as possible (and we really did)!

It would take forever to talk you through the best moments from our two-week stay, so I’ll just share with you a few photos from our favourite parts.

Meeting elephants at the Sai Yoke Elephant Camp.

Meeting elephants at the Sai Yoke Elephant Camp.

Trekking up the mountains in Chiang Mai.

Trekking up the mountains in Chiang Mai.

Exploring Battambang on the Sangkae river in Cambodia.

Exploring Battambang on the Sangkae river in Cambodia.

The thing that took me by surprise the most was how little I had to cut back. Over the nine months before our holiday, I still can’t believe I didn’t have to change my lifestyle. I didn’t miss out on anything yet I’d managed to save up for the trip of a lifetime! 

Taking a well deserved break in Pai, Thailand.

Taking a well deserved break in Pai, Thailand.

We were so pleased when Liv got in touch with Chip HQ to share the memories she made. It really doesn’t matter whether your goal is £100 or £10,000, for one month's time or one year's time. If we’ve helped you reach it — then that makes us happy. So keep on saving and sharing! 

Josie's dream wedding

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Meet Josie! She's a long-time Chipper and newly-married woman.

This is her story...

In July, I got married to my partner of five years, Alec. It was a very special day surrounded by our friends and family, and we had an absolute blast. We came back from our honeymoon last week and, in the midst of reflecting and reminiscing about the whole experience, we started talking about how we felt about the money we’d spent.

Alec and I were both relatively pragmatic when it came to spending money on our wedding. We did the whole thing ourselves and kept it low-key. Neither of us had been dreaming of anything specific since we were four, so there were no grand expectations. We both had similar priorities – good booze, our favourite people, and lots of cake. We’d also planned carefully to make sure that all of the big expenses were spread out over the course of about a year, so the cost never overwhelmed us.

But there is such a thing as too much planning, and it did get to the point where we felt like professional wedding planners rather than the blushing bride-and-groom-to-be. After we announced last year that we were engaged, the only questions anyone seemed to be able to ask us were about the wedding. What venue did we want? How many people would we invite? What kind of cake were we having? What kind of shoes was I looking at? Incessant questions from excited and well-intentioned friends and family.

We felt the pressure. And, being organised people, we swung into action and started giving people answers to all their questions. We booked a sensible venue that we could afford, we wrote very strict guest list, we chose a modest cake and I bought low-heeled shoes that weren’t too extravagant.

I maintain my belief that a practical approach to wedding planning is important. Especially if, like us, you’re on a pretty tight budget. But over time it just turned into another admin chore, part of the furniture like paying the bills and emptying the dishwasher. We never argued about wedding stuff, but we hardly ever did anything spontaneous and crazy and exciting either.

I can’t remember when the breaking point came, or even what the final straw was. But by April I had started talking about how I wanted us to have more fun with the planning, and it turned out that Alec felt exactly the same. We had been so focused on being sensible that we’d forgotten the most crucial element: the joy. For us, the pressure of not spending too much money, and the self-control and the compromise, had overshadowed everything. So we decided to let ourselves be a bit irresponsible for once, and do something way out of our budget, just for fun.

I wasn’t panicking about this because I knew we both had a bit of money in Chip savings. I tend to keep just half an eye on Chip – I prefer not always knowing exactly how much is in there. Alec had also been using the app for around six months, and with our pooled resources we had enough to splash out on a little luxury.

Early on, we’d decided that at the reception we’d just play a Spotify playlist through a decent set of speakers. But that wasn’t exactly what we really wanted in our heart of hearts. What we really wanted was a band. We’re both huge electro fans and most of our dates over the years have been gigs. It took us literally no time at all to decide that our luxury would be a wedding band for the reception. We were giddy with excitement while we chose our band and booked them, and it was so nice not to be bellyaching about the price or combing the internet for the best deal. We just chose what we wanted – money no object.

Fast-forward to the wedding and the band was a huge hit. They definitely brought everyone onto the dance floor, and we had so much fun. Money well spent, and it saved us from feeling like we were completely sensible and boring. We definitely needed that one blowout – and I’m happy to say that the rest of the wedding and the honeymoon came in on time and under budget!

Lara's surprise holiday

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Meet Lara - she’s 27, living in Bristol and working as a freelance designer.

This is her Chip story...

I downloaded Chip in November last year. Pre-Christmas, skint as hell and feeling pretty low. Calling it rock bottom would be melodramatic, but it wasn’t great. I don’t mind living on beans for a week, and I really don’t get fazed by the “am I going to make rent this month” feeling. But once I started thinking about my precarious financial situation, I had to sit myself down and give myself a good talking to.

After a proactive burst of getting my sh*t together, I felt on top of my money situation for once. The trouble with getting your sh*t together is that it’s tiring – January hit and my new-found motivation abandoned me soon after (or I lost it). I went back to normal with my money and my healthy eating and gym habit failed too. But Chip carried on, navigating my chaotic freelancer’s bank account and keeping a small trickle of cash going into my savings account.

Although I didn’t have any specific goals in mind at the beginning, it was a pretty good feeling the first time I checked my balance and saw that it was higher than I expected. The first thing I paid for using savings was a guilt-free shopping spree. I’m not really a big spender, but I do find that buying new things always seems to come with guilt as well as excitement. Anyway, once I hit £200 savings (this was in early Feb) I cheered myself up with a £50 mini-binge in the ASOS sale. NO GUILT. It made me really happy.

I carried on living my life normally until about mid-March, when my savings balance was about £250. An idle googling session took me to Skyscanner, and my old friend the ‘UK to Everywhere’ search. There are always good deals going, but I never book because basically anything more expensive than ‘free’ is usually beyond my budget. But I saw some return flights to Geneva for £90 and I thought…I can afford that. We’d been wanting to go hiking in the Alps for ages (when I say we, I mean my and boyfriend Ste). And I could afford it. Shall I just…? So I did. I withdrew my savings and booked the flights with the money an hour or so later.

So, I’d made this impulsive purchase…and I wasn’t sure what to do. For context, Ste had booked and paid for the bulk of our last holiday together. It hadn’t been extravagant but it was more than I could afford, and he’d volunteered to pay some of my share so that we could away together. He said he didn’t mind, because he earns more than I do, but…still. I picked up my phone to call him about the flights, but my thumb hovered over the button. I kind of wanted to tell him right then so we could start getting prematurely excited, but I wanted to keep it a secret even more. So…I didn’t tell him. Instead I worked out when I would need to book accommodation, and how much I would need.

That was the first time I had a goal that I actually needed to reach. The first thing I did was knock my ‘saving level’ up to ‘high’ (from normal), and secondly I tried hard to be more conscious of my spending. Anyway, I got to £280 by the end of May which was enough to pay for a week’s stay in a beautiful chalet right in the mountains. And Ste still had absolutely no idea what I was up to. In the end, I surprised him with the tickets the day before we were due to fly. He was very sweet – I actually think he almost cried when I told him. We had the BEST TIME.