Bills, petrol, and food: These are the main ways that the 38 million people in France who received €100 in inflation cheques have spent the money, a new poll has shown.
The majority of the people eligible for the cheques have now received them (although the government is still working to reach the 1.3 million eligible who have not yet claimed). The one-off payments began to be rolled out in December.
A new study* by pollster YouGov, for the car company Ford, found that the most common ways that people had spent their extra €100 was on:
- Paying bills (38%)
- Filling up their vehicle’s petrol tank (32%)
- Buying food (29%)
Rising fuel costs still hard to bear
The poll found that the rising price of fuel is also eating into people’s disposable income for entertainment and fun.
It found that 53% of people had given up leisure spending or buying leisure goods, with strong disparities across regions; up to 80% of people said they had reduced this type of spending in Normandy.
And a quarter (25%) of people said that rising fuel costs meant they were no longer able to save for holidays.
The study also found that 36% of people are using their car less and less as fuel costs continue to rise.
However, the poll also found that 55% of people in France do not feel able to give up their car, and in some regions, such as Brittany, this figure rose to more than 70%.
Another study suggested that “if that price of fuel keeps rising at its current level across the whole year of 2022, it would lead to an extra spend of €550 per household for the year, compared to 2021”. This would equate to a drop in spending power of 1.4%.
It comes as the government announces a “resilience plan” to help households and businesses deal with rising fuel costs, including a refund of 15 centimes per litre of fuel for four months.
*The YouGov France study polled 1,003 people online, of a representative sample of the French population aged 18 and over, from March 1-2, 2022.