After the Manx government brought in several measures to fight the cost of living crisis ahead of winter, the Isle of Man Examiner asked the public whether they are being forced to cut back and if they feel the support package is enough.
A loan package to Manx Utilities to prevent an enormous increase in electricity prices, more targeted support and the capping of bus fares at £2 all form part of the government’s plan.
Pat Maher, from the east of the island, is sceptical of the measures brought in. He said: ‘I’m cutting back on everything.
‘We’re talking about electricity prices being frozen by the government, but I’m sure we’ll be paying for that in the long run.
‘Also these big gas companies in the UK are saying they’re going to give 10% back, why not just price freeze the whole lot if they’re making billions of pounds of profits?
‘I remember when they said that the national gas pipeline that came in years ago was supposed to bring all the prices down, and it was all going to drop, but prices increased immediately afterwards and we’re still paying for it now.
‘And with the buses being capped at two pounds, how are they going to absorb that because they’re already saying they’re running at a loss?
‘For locals like myself in the Douglas area it isn’t going to make any difference to us because it’s already under two pounds’.
Joy said: ‘I’ve started to think about not turning the gas or the heating on. I haven’t used mine all summer.
‘We were just saying we’re going to have to buy thick jumpers this year!
‘You do worry [about finances] but what can you do about it, the energy companies and the government have got you over a barrel no matter what you do or think’.
Kay added: ‘You do have to watch your electricity and things generally, but they’re things our generation always did.
‘The electricity and bus capping are good ideas though.’
She said: ‘It’s more the cost of fuel that’s an issue for us people in Bride.
‘We live in an old building so heating is a massive issue for us so we just save wood and fuel wherever we can.
‘We’re quite lucky in that we’re able to do all the same activities, but we’ve just got to be mindful of how much things cost.
‘The fuel and heating is the major one, especially if you live in an inefficient property like ours. It’s more than 100 years old and it’s like living in cotton wool – the heat just escapes out of it’.
Nathan Cafearo, from Braddan, is doubtful that people are struggling financially as much as they let on.
He said: ‘If people can afford £3 for a cup of tea in Starbucks and £25 for pizza in Dominoes then there’s a bit of room left for manoeuvre isn’t there?
‘Both seem busy so I don’t think everyone’s as short as you might think.
‘To be honest I’m old enough to remember when not everyone had central heating in their house anyway, we slept in pyjamas and we’re just going back to the way it was then.
‘My last gas bill was £1000 for six weeks, and it was barely even turned on.
‘I only noticed it because it had three noughts!’