Thirteen apps that will change your life

In 2019, the struggle can be real. Politics are volatile, the weather is extreme, avocado prices are skyrocketing and we’re constantly barraged by popular internet memes. As a result, we’ve become a country obsessed with finding ways to make life as convenient as possible. From travel, to food, to getting up in the morning, anything to take the edge off is welcomed with open arms.

In light of that, and because we’re all about making your life as easy as possible, we’ve put together an ultimate list of apps that’ll make your life that little bit easier, because let’s face it, you deserve it.

App: Move GB

Category: Fitness and lifestyle

What it does:

Describing themselves as ‘every activity membership’. Move Gb provides one fitness membership to thousands of activities and classes, at different venues across the country. Forget signing up to a gym, download move GB and simply book at the tap of a button, at a time and place that works for you. Move GB centres around convenience, flexibility, variety and ease, providing a membership that allows you to work out wherever you are, at a time that suits you.

App: Petrol Prices

Category: Travel

What it does:

This app is another cracker if you’re looking to save some time and money, petrol prices helps you find the cheapest or nearest petrol stations within any UK postcode, covering over 98% of uk forecourts. The app lets you earn points by updating missing or incorrect prices, or through editing the app to include missing station facilities like water, toilets or baby-changing. If you add your vehicle, you’ll also receive useful reminders of when your MOT or tax is due, which can earn you additional points.

App: Yummly

Category: Food

What it does:

Yummly is a recipe search engine app that will solve your meal time woes in seconds. Yummly filters recipes by ingredients, cuisine, diet, nutrition and allergies, to help you plan the perfect personalised meal for you and your friends. Helping to put together shopping lists, Yummly also provides a ‘what’s in my fridge feature’, which allows you to search specific ingredients or barcodes of products to show you relevant, tailored recipes.

App: 1password

Category: Organisation

What it does:

This app essentially does what it says on the tin, remembering all of your passwords so you don’t have to. 1password is a secure way for you to store all of your sensitive information using one master password. It stores your debit and credit card information, backs up your software licenses, and locks down those all important notes you’d otherwise forget. The app also provides the option to have multiple vaults, and share selected information with friends, family and co workers.

App: City mapper

Category: Travel

What it does:

Citymapper makes planning and navigating through new cities far less daunting and time consuming. Working in real time, the app lets you plan your journey with different travel options compared to estimated times of arrival. The app also offers disruption alerts and can keep your friends or coworkers updated of your whereabouts. City mapper offers the added bonus of Uber integration and live cycle info, and in the unlikely occurrence that you go offline, citymapper also provides an in app map to find your way around.

App: Mint

Category: Finance

What it does:

Mint is about as simple as it gets when it comes to budgeting apps. Mint automatically categorizes transactions from linked credit and debit cards and tracks them against your budgets. The app will send you alerts when you spend a little more than planned, and also keeps note of your overall cash flow to provide an insight into where you’re spending your money each month.

App: Alarmy

Category: Productivity

What it does:

If the temptation to press the snooze button is getting in the way of having a productive day, then Alarmy is the app for you. The alarmy app won’t stop ringing until you’ve carried out a set task, this could be anything from completing a maths puzzle, to taking a picture of your cup of tea. Regardless, alarmy makes sure you’re up and about, and ready to seize the day. Simple, but genius.

App: Headspace

Category: Health and Wellness

What it does:

Headspace is a great app for life gets busy and your mind is feeling just as hectic. Describing themselves as the guide to health and happiness, headspace helps you to let go off stress and anxiety, and focuses on ensuring that you get a better night sleep. The app offers guided meditations and mindfulness techniques to help you find balance and calm, regardless of what life throws at you.

App: Petrol Prices

Category: Travel

What it does:

This app is another cracker if you’re looking to save some time and money, petrol prices helps you find the cheapest or nearest petrol stations within any UK postcode, covering over 98% of UK forecourts. The app lets you earn points by updating missing or incorrect prices, or through editing the app to include missing station facilities like water, toilets or baby-changing. If you add your vehicle, you’ll also receive useful reminders of when your MOT or tax is due, which can earn you additional points.

App: Wunderlist

Category: Scheduling/Organisation

What it does:

With hundreds of productivity apps out there, it can be hard to figure out which one will work the best for you. Wunderlist is a simple to-do list and task manager app that helps you get the job done. From shopping lists, to holiday planning, to important reminders, this app has easy to use features to combat organisation stress. You can share lists or collaborate with friends, family and colleagues, and wunderlist instantly syncs between your phone, tablet and computer, so you can access your to-dos from anywhere. Organisation has never been so easy.

App: Calm

Category: Health and Wellness

What it does:

Calm is the number 1 app for sleep, meditation and relaxation, and they certainly earned their status. Calm provides guided meditation, breathing programs and stretching exercises for beginners, all the way to intermediate and advanced, meaning wherever you are in journey, there’s something to help you. The aop promises to ensure better sleep, lower stress and less anxiety and is recommended by mental heath experts.

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App: Wriggle

Category: Food

What it does:

Wriggle saves you time and money, by finding you great food deals in your area. Wriggle hand picks favourite restaurants, cafes, bars and pubs to create exclusive deals. You simply choose where you’d like to go, purchase the deal in app, then show your wriggle code when you arrive to receive offers and discounts . The app allows you to search by location, postcode, cuisine, time and date, meaning you can find the best food, near to you, at a time that works for your schedule. The app also includes wriggle rewards, that sees that every purchase you make on wriggle earns you points that can redeemed for credit, meaning the next time you purchase will be cheaper.

App: Money Box

Category: Finance

What it does:

Money box is the perfect introduction to investment, with very little effort required. The app rounds up small everyday purchases to an amount set by you and puts the excess into stocks and shares of your choice, to help you start investing from as little as £1. You simply link it to your debit card, and set how much you want it to round up by each month. When you sign up Money box allows you to choose between, ‘cautious’, ‘balanced’ and ‘adventurous’, meaning whether you prefer to play it safe, or dive in at the investment deep end, money box can guide you through it. Investment made simple.

How to Hustle

Ten simple tips to turn your ideas into income

What do you think of when you hear the phrase ‘side hustle’? Perhaps you think about selling lemonade to your friends as a child. Perhaps you think about the app idea you’ve always wanted to pursue. Perhaps you think about that super successful business you swear you came up with first. 

Well, according to recent reports, 40% of British workers now have a ‘side hustle’, and with that figure expected to rise to over half of the adult population by 2030, ‘hustling’ is now more popular than ever. The study also found that almost half of ‘side hustlers’ were motivated by their desire to follow a passion or explore a new challenge, confirming the notion that a side hustle is not just a money making scheme, but an opportunity to spend time working on something you enjoy, something you’re passionate about, and something you can be proud of.

Whether it’s selling clothes on eBay, gardening, dog walking, blogging, car washing, tutoring, teaching, cleaning, YouTube, ecommerce, catering, party planning, crafting or baking, turning your talents into money has never been so varied and accessible. But how can you actually turn a great idea into a lucrative side hustle? Well, just like that, we’ve written you a handy guide to get you started.

Here are limber’s top ten tips for making a side hustle work for you:

1. Choose something you enjoy

Anyone can have a side hustle, but it’s important to find a balance between skill set and passions. Turning your talents into money should be fun, so find what works for you. Your side hustle is the perfect time to embrace your hidden talents, and enjoy making money.

2. Start simple

You might be surprised to hear that the secret to a successful side hustle, isn’t the ability to solve problems for the millions. Instead, focus on a single person’s’ needs. If your side hustle is building gazebos, don’t start with a website and an overly complex social media strategy, just find one person who wants a gazebo and build it for them at the most competitive price. While building it, do a time lapse, take photos and ask your friends to share your handy work. You’ll learn more in this process about how to drum up business than you will by starting with a website.  

3. Be resourceful

Starting a side hustle can be daunting, but there’s a wealth of information out there to help you get going. From podcasts, to self help books, blogs – the internet is full of information and advice around how to turn your side hustle into a lucrative business, so get savvy (after reading this article), by doing some research. Some of our favourites include, the book ‘How to have a happy hustle’ by Bec Evans and the ‘Side hustle school’ podcast. 

4. Be patient

You probably won’t make your first million in a week, and that’s okay. Have patience and stick with it. A positive mind set will go far, so stay motivated and don’t feel discouraged if it takes a while to turn a profit. The desire to make a profit can sometimes dull creativity, so try not to focus on it, and don’t be concerned if you initially have to give away your skills for free, we promise the long game will be worth it.

5. Create a schedule

Running a small business alongside everything else takes time and energy, so it’s important to plan your side hustle around you. Starting a side hustle means you can be your own boss, so make the most of it, and avoid setting yourself an unrealistic time scale. Online management tools like trello or Monday can help when planning out next steps and deadlines.

6. Invest small at first

This one probably goes without saying, but remember to only invest what you can afford. It’s great if you’re expecting the business to take off, but be cautious not to overspend while it’s still early days. Try to seperate your private money and your company’s money into different bank accounts, and don’t be afraid to consult a pro when figuring out finances. Proper accounting might not seem necessary at first, but it’s important to start as you mean to go on.

7. Team up

Starting a side hustle doesn’t have to be a solo project. Teaming up with friends or family allows you to share ideas and manage your workload. You could also use apps like meetup or bumblebizz, to meet like-minded freelancers and entrepreneurs in your area.

8. Seek advice and feedback

Advice and feedback are key to launching a successful business. Depending on what your side hustle is, initially you may want to trial it amongst your family and friends. This way, you can iron out any bumps in your product or service before launching it to the public.

9. Be creative

You’re in charge, so be creative with your side hustle. This is an opportunity to really put your stamp on something so don’t hold back. Often with a new business idea, the more unique, the better.

10. Be proactive

Stop thinking. Stop talking. Do it. There is no substitute for real experience and even if your first attempts fail, you will always be closer to your dream than if you never started. If you wait for everything to be perfect, you will never begin (we think we saw that on a bumper sticker once).

So, what are you waiting for? Get hustling.

I’m a Slashie, and you should be too

Take it from a writer/student/waitress

In the not very distant past, I’d never even heard of a Slashie. If I’m honest, I thought it was something far more aggressive than it actually is. Being a Slashie, is not something I actively sought out and I’ll admit that growing up, just like many of us, I often felt like a singular, full time job was the mark of success. Suddenly, I’ve found myself launched into the world of the Slashie, yet within a relatively short period of time, the benefits have already prevailed.

I’m a waitress/English literature undergraduate/limber content creator, and somehow these all gel together in one big ball that I’m calling my career. Granted, I don’t get paid to be a student, but I think we can all agree that my degree is an active contribution towards my future employment prospects (hopefully). That’s right. I have three somewhat conflicting ‘hustles’ on the go, and yet there’s a large part of me that feels as if I’m really owning it. Where some may feel that multiple ventures could lead to a sense of unfulfillment, or incompleteness, this could not be further from the truth. Throughout school, and my degree, I never felt as if I had the opportunity to exercise all of my skills; I’d do well in English, Art and history and sort of bumble my way through the rest of it. Now I feel like I’m doing well, and doing well at lots of things.

Part of this is of course, is down to working for limber. It’s very clear from day one that there’s zero expectation to sacrifice. Sure, work hard, but don’t overwork. Don’t say no to friends and family, and don’t give up ‘life’ in place of a job.

It’s a refreshing outlook, and a welcome change from the ‘relentless grind pays off ‘ attitude that seemed to be pushed throughout my A levels and degree. Nothings excessive, it’s all about balance. Being a Slashie and working for Limber feels as if everything’s in moderation, I can actually meet targets and still find time for a social life.

Being a Slashie also means that the repetitive bullsh*t on my cv about ‘enjoying a challenge’ and ‘rising to any occasion’ has actually gained some truth behind it. It’s no longer just a lacklustre, empty, page filler that i presume employers want to hear. Sure, i like to think i have those qualities, but being a Slashie actually proves it. Holding down more than one occupation, is living, working proof that I actually do have strong time management, and organisation skills, and its proof that I can apply myself in a number of different environments. Some days I’m writing about the gender pay gap, others I’m serving cappuccinos and making cream teas. Being a Slashie is about commiting to lots of things, rather than committing to nothing.

I’m not afraid to admit that I get bored. I’m fascinated by (parts) of my degree and enjoy my waitressing job, I love writing. But, I need new challenges, fresh faces, and different tasks to wrap my brain around. I’m convinced that even the chief biscuit taster at McVities just doesn’t fancy a biscuit some days, and that’s okay. Lots of us already enjoy our jobs, but if the repetition of having to apply yourself to the same tasks’ day in, day out can sometimes numb your brain, then the Slashie lifestyle is definitely for you. Of course, I realise I’m at a slight advantage, considering that both my waitressing and writing jobs are designed to be part time. Not everyone can storm into their bosses office and demand four day week, just because they fancy it, but we can start to reintroduce more autonomy, freedom and choices into our working world.

I suppose more than anything, being a Slashie has built my confidence. I’ve never felt more capable or willing to ‘give things a go’. I feel motivated and inspired, knowing that I haven’t committed to doing the same thing every single day. At the start of the week, I enjoy a change of scenery, I can grab lunch from St Nics market, and find I’m productive in an office environment, but by the time it comes around to my Saturday job, I’m glad not to have to commute in order to get to work, and a day waitressing is a welcome break.

People are sometimes quick to judge the Slashie lifestyle, afterall, nothing says ‘I’m annoying’ like someone banging on about their dream job. But being a Slashie genuinely makes working your dream job, accessible, and financially feasible, it’s not something you’re forced to do, it’s something you aspire to.

To put it simply, I’m living and working the best of both worlds and I wouldn’t change a thing. Give the Slashie life a go, what’s the worst that could happen?

“Flexible, empowering and easy, limber allows me to work, when i want to work”

We chat to limber user, Catherine, about why she loves limber and how using the app to find work has changed her life.

Q: So Catherine firstly, why do you use limber?

A: I use limber because it allows me to work when I want to work.

Being able to choose shifts on the day means that if I have a plan and it falls through, I can say ‘I’m going to take on a shift today’.

It’s the flexibility of having a few things planned, but still being able to change my mind the day before.  

Q: Does that mean you check the app for shifts regularly?

A: Yeah, I actually look quite often. I check every morning. It’s part of my routine, I’ll check the news and then I’ll check limber and see what there is. It’s quite spontaneous to be honest, there will be a few shifts a week that are planned, but really, it’s quite spontaneous.

Q: Is there something you particularly enjoy, about picking up shifts on limber?

A: I quite enjoy feeling busy. I like that feeling of going home at the end of the day and feeling like I’ve got something done. I like to prioritise work, so I tend to pick work first and then plan things around that.

Q: What skills has using limber, helped you improve?

A: Definitely my communication skills, I think I’ll be moving up to a supervisory role soon.

Q: How do you find getting paid on limber?

A: It’s really easy. You just send it off, saying that you’ve done it and you get your email saying when you’re getting paid. It couldn’t be any easier. I like to have it all in one place, so I can keep track of what I’m earning. I’d prefer to get paid through the app, because you can keep track of what you’ve worked and when. To me, cash in hand feels a bit dodgy.

I prefer to use limber, over picking up shifts traditionally. I absolutely hate old fashioned rotas where it’s all written out on a piece of paper, and if someone swaps their shift you have to cross it out and write it over the top. Picking up shifts on limber is so much more effective.

Q: So, how did you find work, before limber?

A: I found it really difficult actually. I was studying at university, so I found it really hard to juggle my time, there seemed to be a lot of shifts on limber which were during the week, which suits me, whereas I couldn’t find any shifts like that before. Usually I’m busy at the weekend, so I can’t do long shifts. It’s been completely life changing in that way.

Q: How does limber help you?

A: limber helps me by allowing me to be flexible with my time, I can take on a shift that might be starting later in the day. So, I can do everything I need to do, like go to the gym or something during the day, and then work my limber shift later on. So, it all works out. Wherever I am, whatever I’m doing, I can just log on to the app and find out when there’s shift. It can be on the day, or a week in advanced, and that’s so helpful.

Q: So, what three words would you use to describe limber?

A: Flexible. Empowering. Easy.

Q: And finally, can you describe in one word, how using limber makes you feel?

Excited.

Calling time on wage theft

We investigate a growing problem

With brighter days finally gracing our skies, the restaurant trade is expectedly booming. While we all enjoy grabbing a bite on a sunny evening or a couple of cheeky lunchtime pints, increased custom and a higher demand on serving staff can sometimes result in customers leaving the restaurant without paying for their food. 

Despite the UK restaurant and food industry turning over more than 30 billion pounds each year, which tends to spike over the summer months, increasing reports of ‘Wage theft’, as described by Unite the union, have recently surfaced, causing outrage across social media. Multiple restaurants across England and Wales have been accused of cutting the wages of employees to cover the bill after customers have left without paying for their food, and as someone who’s worked in hospitality for the past six years, i can unfortunately confirm that dine and dashers, are hardly unheard-of.

While all restaurants accused have made it clear that this unfair conduct is not company policy, some restaurant managers are blatantly ignoring their moral and, in some cases, legal obligation to pay their employees a full wage, even if a walkout occurs.

This recent misconduct within the restaurant industry brings to light just how detrimental wage theft has become. Wage theft tends to happen more frequently amongst jobs with a high employee turnover, and to those working zero hours contracts, and unsurprisingly many people choose not to speak out against it, in fear that their employment is vulnerable.

Imagine planning a lads holiday to Magaluf, questionable nickname t-shirts and all, only to find that you’re forced to cancel after having your wages docked by £150, due to circumstances entirely out of your control. Or worse, imagine finding you couldn’t pay your rent or food bill because the earnings you earmarked to cover it are no longer coming in.

Such severe sanctions simply cannot be justified.

Just last month, it was reported that a Cardiff waitress was forced to give up £55 out of her wages after a table left without paying for their food. The waitress, who had loyally worked the company for 9 years, was ordered to pay the bill, with the justification that “walk-outs happen too often”. Losing out on the £55, meant that her earnings from the 10 hour shift she worked were docked to £45, bringing her hourly rate down to an illegal, and quite frankly embarrassing £4.50, an eye watering £3.71 below the minimum wage. While her employers commented in defence that this practice was ‘absolutely not company policy’, this response is simply not powerful enough in the face of such a detrimental issue. You only have to read our manifesto to know, that here at limber, we’re pretty passionate about fair pay.

While common, wage theft is not a unique problem to the hospitality sector, and studies have found that the total for unpaid wages suffered by British workers was around a staggering £3.1 billion in 2016, meaning that more than six million of the lowest-paid workers in the country each lost out by £470 on average. Official statistics also show that more than 360,000 workers across the UK as a whole were paid below the national minimum living wage in 2016. Three years on and we’re still fighting against this blatant abuse of trust and exploitation of labour. If the deduction pulls the hourly rate below minimum wage, which in many cases it does, it’s simply illegal.

While there is no organisation that appears to officially follow wage docking as company policy, there’s also a vast lack of measures in place to inhibit this kind of misconduct, and a clear need for a push towards achieving David Metcalfs, Director of Labour Market Enforcement, most recent strategy which is set to improve state-led enforcement of employment rights. This includes new laws and regulations, that explicitly inhibit the unfair docking of workers’ wages.

It’s time to protect workers and ensure that those in higher positions are not lining their pockets with the wages that rightfully belong to their employees, from servers to hairdressers to dog walkers, a full day’s pay is a simply your fundamental right.