Every consumer is in some way affected by the increase in value added tax (VAT) from 14% to 15% since the beginning of April. We decided to find out how much the cost of some items have changed and also, how people feel about it.
Luckily, it’s not all doom and gloom. See our tips below on how you can still #LiveBetter. And in other good news, Capitec has absorbed the VAT increase on the fees for electronic payments on our app, Internet banking and USSD, helping to soften the blow even more.
Your grocery expenses
The cost of groceries increased only marginally if you look at individual items. However, it definitely affects the total cost of your grocery basket. Here’s an example:
|Frozen fish (400g)||R72.62||R73.35|
|Frozen chips (1kg)||R35.99||R36.35|
|Sliced cheese (200g)||R26.22||R26.48|
Do South Africans feel it?
People’s feelings are very mixed. Some say they had not yet noticed the effects of the higher VAT rate, while others complain about the pinch. Watch the video to hear a few public opinions.
Soften the blow
Quick tips to live better and save money:
Many basic foods, such as fruit and vegetables, are zero-rated, meaning VAT is not charged on them. By using fresh ingredients and preparing your own meals, you’ll be eating healthy and saving money. Some of the zero-rated foods include maize meal, rice, brown bread, dried beans, milk, and lentils.
Always check the cost per item. It can be cheaper to buy essentials such as toiletries in bulk if the cost per item is lower than buying them individually. Savings such as these can help you to offset the VAT increase.
Avoid sugary drinks
Sugary drinks have an extra tax levy and are therefore more expensive than their healthier counterparts. By cutting beverages packed with sugar from your diet, you can save money and look after your health.