Why being single in 2022 comes at a cost

Written by Leah Sinclair

From paying more for hotel rooms to rising household bills, single people are facing an additional financial burden amid the cost of living crisis.

The cost of living crisis is something we can’t stop talking about. Whether it’s discussing the amount we spend on food shopping or UK inflation rising for the ninth month in a row, the state of our finances and where they will be in the next six to 12 months is a topic on everyone’s mind.

But there’s another discussion taking place around the cost of living crisis and those who are disproportionately affected by it – and that is single people.

Yes, those who aren’t currently coupled up are facing additional costs that can put them under financial strain in comparison to those who are in relationships – and it’s something that is being talked about more and more.

In a recent Instagram post, finance writer Ellie (aka @thisgirltalksmoney) broke down the cost of being single in 2022 and four specific ways single people are being affected by the cost of living crisis.

First up, Ellie highlights household outgoings and how they are higher for single people compared to those in relationships. “Single people on average are paying £7,564.50 a year more than their coupled-up counterparts on basic household outgoings,” she writes.

This is followed by household monthly bills, which Ellie says are £363 more expensive for singles, with rent being the biggest contributor.

Next up, the money coach says food portions are another factor affecting single people. “Most items come in sizes suitable for couples and families,” she says. “For example, a ready meal designed for two works out cheaper than those made for one person.”

“A single person is paying on average £674 a month on rent in the UK,” Ellie adds. “A couple only slightly more at £866 (or £433 per person if split equally).”

“Crazy, as it might seem in 2022, being single can have a huge impact on your finances,” she captioned the post.

“From the obvious cost burdens that singletons face – like not splitting bills and rent costs in half – to the more subtle and often forgotten ways that single people pay more.

“Whether it’s food portions made for two or the lack of hotel rooms that cater for one, it’s clear that there’s a real cost to being single.

“And with the cost of living crisis going up this year, the pressure on single people is only set to grow.”

In the comments, people spoke about other ways being single is affecting their finances – with one highlighting the cost of transport.

“If you get the train you can get a two-together railcard or if you drive the travel cost is effectively reduced as two people are in the vehicle,” one commented. “I love visiting my friends in relationships but they seem to be moving further and further away into the suburbs and countryside as they settle down so my costs to see them are increasing.”

Another user highlighted the cost of wedding seasons and how they impact her finances. “Wedding season is another big one, especially when they aren’t local,” she said. “My friends can’t understand why I don’t want to be in the same hotel as them when it’s £300+ just for the room. Not to mention travel and presents.”

Some users shared how friends in relationships didn’t realise the impact the cost of living crisis is having on them.

“Thank you for doing this. A lot of my friends don’t seem to understand why I can’t go on holiday/a shopping trip/go out for dinner because I pay 100% of my bills whereas they don’t.”

“My friends in relationships are amazing but they really don’t realise just how different our situations are when it comes to finances,” another said. “If you’re in a relationship with someone who is also sensible with their finances it can be a massive relief and I don’t think these dynamics are discussed enough.”

While it’s safe to say that the cost of living crisis continues to affect people across the board, the conversation around how single people are coping is a vital one to have.

It’s time to get real about just how much being single truly costs.

Image: Getty

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