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Recommendations and referrals

I’ve used a fair number of online services over the years, many of which allow me to recommend them upon which I may receive a small credit or other benefit, and often the you may receive a welcome bonus having been referred rather than just signing up directly via their website. Click on the retailer name to visit their site via my referral link.


If you buy anything online, you should check whether the retailer offers cashback via one of the popular cashback websites such as TopCashback or Quidco.

I also buy tons of stuff from Amazon so please feel free to use my Amazon Electronics affiliate link.

Mystery Shopping

You can get free food at a number of popular high street chains AND get paid for it by becoming a Mystery Shopper



If you need to take DirectDebit payments then these guys only charge a flat 1% fee which compares very well with the market and is much lower than merchant credit card fees and PayPal. Signing up via my link also gives you £50 of fees back.

P2P investing


I joined Zopa in the very early days as I like the concept of “removing the middle man” in the lending/borrowing market and I think peer-to-peer has a bright future. I’ve certainly received a very good rate on my lending over the past few years, and have experienced very little bad debt.

Funding Circle

A similar concept to Zopa, but lending to businesses rather than consumers. The government now endorses this peer-to-peer approach by fulfilling the final 10% of loans on the Funding Circle platform. They don’t have a referral link but you can get £50 sign-up bonus if I refer you via email.


If you’re a bit worried about Brexit (and who isn’t?) and want to hedge some investments in the EuroZone, this is P2P investment site offering investments mostly in European properly loans. Signing up using my link boosts your interest by 0.5% for three months.


Another P2P loan/investment site offering Euro investments offering between 10% and 15% interest.



I use Nutmeg for ISAs and pensions. They have a great user interface, and also have apps for your phone if you want to manage your investments on the go.  Signing up via my link will get you 3 months of fee-free ISA management.


If you’re interested in investing in start-ups and early-stage companies, Seedrs is a good online platform and community for VC investments.

UK Credit cards

American Express Platinum card

30,000 reward points as a sign-up bonus, travel insurance and points on everything you spend this is a great card to earn Avios, Virgin or other travel points which you can then cash in for free flights or hotel stays. Add in travel insurance, hotel loyalty scheme upgrades and airport lounge access it’s a great card for the frequent traveller. £450 annual fee.

Tesco Mastercard

For the few places I encounter that don’t accept Amex, I use my Tesco Mastercard as a back-up. This earns Clubcard points on all spending which can be redeemed at hundreds of retailers, or converted to Avios or Virgin miles. Tesco do not have an automated referal link, but you can get 1000 bonus clubcard points if I refer you once you’ve applied. Just contact me when you’ve been accepted.


Curve is a “Virtual Debit Card” that allows you to recharge transactions to another credit card (thus gaining reward points on the transaction) at places that only take Debit cards (e.g. HMRC). The app allows you to add your existing credit cards, and dynamically choose which one should be used when you use your physical Curve debit card. Use my referral code “GCESS” and get a free £5 credit in your virtual wallet when you sign up.

Virgin Atlantic

Earn 2 Virgin Flying Club miles on all your Amex spending and 1 Virgin mile for Visa spend.

Sign-up bonus: 18,500 Virgin Flying Club miles with your first purchase within 90 days

On-going benefits: Double miles for spend on Virgin flights and holidays, Premium Economy reward upgrade on an Economy redemption after spending £5,000 per year (two can be earned per year), companion voucher (valid only on a paid flight in a flexible booking class in any cabin) when you spend £7,500 in a year.



One of the new FinTech start-ups that don’t charge any FX fees on foreign spending. Their card card also comes with advanced features like Geo-blocking and being able to disable some payment types (e.g. online, or magnetic-strip). If you travel frequently, this card is a must in your wallet as it allows you to maintain virtual accounts in a variety of currencies, and only charges you the interbank exchange rate to move money between them.


If you’re interested in staying in unusual places without breaking the bank, this is a great way of finding some hidden gems. Everywhere I’ve booked using it has been excellent and often cheaper than a hotel or motel.


Because they don’t advertise their prices to the public, they are allowed to undercut the popular sites as they are counted as a private members club. Get credit when signing up using my link.


Whilst not available in every city, Uber is becoming a very popular way of booking taxis and mini-cabs. Get your first ride free by signing up with my link.

Virgin Atlantic flying club

With travel to the US becoming more frequent with Synergy and Summit no longer being held in Europe, I joined the Virgin flying club, their frequent flyer scheme. You can fund this by flying Virgin of course, but also they have a Virgin Credit card, and you can convert across American Express Membership Reward points, and Tesco Clubcard points. You will get 2000 bonus miles on your first economy flight if I refer you (or 5000 for premium economy, 10,000 for Upper Class)


If like me you are a member of a large number of hotel, airline and supermarket loyalty schemes, it can become a bit of a headache managing all the accounts. AwardWallet allows you to store your credentials to hundreds of popular loyalty schemes in one place, and displays all your balances, and importantly, any expiring loyalty points, in one page. They have mobile apps available so you can check your balances whist on the road too.


Web hosting

Slightly biassed I know (as I’m a director) but do consider XenCentricHosting for your web hosting needs.

Electric and Gas utilities

I recently switched to Bulb who provide 100% renewable energy to your home. You can get £50 off your first bill by switching using my link.


I use Perkbox to provide a whole range of discounts to my staff (e.g. me!). They give discounts at a huge range of outlets such as Vue Cinemas, free mobile phone insurance and discounts on many high street retailers.

Free food

OK you have to “work for your lunch” a little…become a mystery shopper and get free food at many popular high street food outlets and pub chains.


NakedWines have a awesome selection of great tasting wine, and if you sign up via my link, you’ll get £25 credit to spend on whatever you like.

Online training

Trond has some great online training videos and tutorials on his site (and not just for XenApp, despite the name!)

NowTV On demand TV & movies

I signed up to NowTV just before xmas as they had a 30 day free trial which meant free Sky Movie Channels and thousands of on-demand movies. The service utilises your existing broadband connection, and you can play on laptops, tablets, smartphones and even Google Chromecast, or you can purchase a NowTV box for a tenner. They have three packages available: Entertainment, Movies and Sports , and signing up via my referral links will give you a £10 high street voucher. You can also hack the box and install the Plex media player making it one of the cheapest media streamers you can buy!

Broadband/Cable TV/Mobile

I’ve used Virgin Media fibre cable broadband for many years and it provides market leading speeds (in the UK at least). There is no online referral link, but I can refer you via email and you’ll get free installation (usually £49). You can also get £50 sign-up bonus if I refer you for Virgin Mobile contract (either SIM only or with a handset)

Vitality Health insurance

Vitality have a number of health insurance and private medical insurance policies. You can get a £50 John Lewis gift card if you sign up using my referral link

Overseas calling

Having in-laws living overseas can get expensive on international calls, so I use LocalPhone to provide a local UK number that automatically redirects to my overseas numbers.

Mobile phone

Get a free giffgaff Sim
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