Just imagine if one of the many financial services brands or independent financial advisers – regularly berated by self-proclaimed MoneySavingExpert Martin Lewis – broadcast email content that was so ambiguous that it required the addition of an (ish) in the copy?

They’d be hung out to dry wouldn’t they? (In fact, they are hung out to dry and then fined by a regulator.)

So take a look at this week’s email from Mr Lewis and see if you can spot the ‘ish’-es peppering the copy.

In the interests of clarity and fair treatment of consumers, are the flights from Ryanair £5 pounds or not? Are ‘free’ Star Wars models worth £4 or not and – for that matter – are they ‘free’? And can you print 100s of photos for free or not?

Martin Lewis is supposed to be a champion for the fair treatment of consumers and their rights, and good for him too.

But that is a privileged platform and, if you use it as a means of delivering aggregated money-saving links, then you should adhere to the same principles that you insist others should apply to their own promotional activity.

For instance, Mr Lewis could declare his intention to voluntarily adhere to the principles and rules applied to financial promotions in the UK that thousands of professionally qualified financial advisers are expected to abide by.

At the very least, content published in Mr Lewis’s name should be crystal clear about the details of available offers – and especially the potential costs.

Not to do so is misleading(ish).

No. Scratch that. It is misleading.

2 thoughts on “Moneysavingexpert(ish)

  1. What a strange thing to point out – and a rather cheap shot. For anyone reading its worth nothing what was actually said.

    “Urgent. £3(ish) Europe flights. Ends midnight Weds 4 Nov.

    Ryanair’s 80% off fare promo means flights for 17 Nov- 31 Jan can be had for £3 e/w (inc. some charges), from various UK airports to over 50 European destinations. Speedily find them using the Updated Guide: £3 Flights, then beat the scores of add-on charges with the Budget Airline Fee Fighting guide. Related: Cheap Flights, Cheap Hotels”

    The point of the £3 ish is that while the flights are listed as £3 and can be bought at that price if you do it the RIGHT way, if you do it the WRONG way they are more than £3 so the ish is to indicate (in a headline remember) that £3 is not set in stone.

    The explanation undeneath then specifically explains this. As this is plain text you can’t see tht the “£3 flights” is a link to our search tool to find the cheap flights and the {Budget Airlines Fee Fighting Guide} links to our detailed explanation of how to ensure it only costs you £3 and you don’t pay any more.

    Im not sure what the author of this polemic piece is trying to illustrate.

    The fact is many places list these flights as £3 – we don’t as we think that is misleading – so we add the ISH in the headline to indicate it may be other than that – then go on to explain it.

    As for the Mirror free lego – we call it £4 ish as these pieces aren’t sold seperately so having any price on them is difficult – yet we assessed the cost of similar lego pieces and they were… £4 ish. By putting a price on a freebie it gives an indication of value – and as people need to buy a newspaper at 40p (from memory) to get the voucher for the freebie we want to help them make a decision whether its worth it.

    Knocking pieces like this are all very well – but a little thought first would help.

    Martin Lewis


  2. Mmm….that piece evidently hit a nerve! Was that really Mr Lewis leaving the hurt comment above or one of his army of journalists?!


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