Why The Plastic Bag Charge Isn’t The End Of The World

The government has introduced a plastic bag charge of 5p so here are some cheaper, more stylish alternatives

The inevitable has happened – from today your local supermarket will charge you 5p for every plastic bag you use.

In 2014 supermarket chains gave out 7.6 billion plastic bags – that’s over 118 bags per person here in the UK. According to the government, charging shoppers 5p a pop should reduce usage of bags by 80 per cent and save £60 million in litter cleaning. Reckon we can all agree that’s a good thing right?

The government’s mandatory charge will apply to all retailers with over 250 employees, so make sure you don’t get caught out if you’re going on a post payday shopping spree this weekend.

Marks and Spencer shoppers will probably be the least shocked of us as they’ve had to fork out for bags since 2007 but now they’ll have to pay for those little sandwich bags too. Soz.

We conducted a quick straw poll here at Marie Claire and we reckon that we probably go food shopping about three times a week and use two bags each time we go. Based on that, we’ll be spending 30p a week on plastic bags now or £15.60 a year. Instead of adding to those plastic bag landfills, we’ve picked out five of our favourite shopping totes out there that will not only save the environment but will also save you money.

1.  Cath Kidston, £15

2.  Land’s End, £14.95

3.  3 Blonde Bears, £12

4.  Bird, £5.95

5.  Snowdon Design & Craft, £10.95

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