September 14, 2017

Mindful money, mindful travel

One of my New Year’s resolutions was to talk about money more. It is something I spend a lot of time talking about in private (as we all do): over dinner with friends, discussing joint receipts with my boyfriend, calls with my lovely accountant and of course the (often, not always) frustrating world of invoicing. I do talk about money a lot, I just wasn’t talking about it much in public.

Talking about money openly feels like the last taboo. We are happy to share most other parts of lives openly and honestly on Instagram (from mental health, to relationships, to our unfiltered faces) but money still remains something of a mystery. I totally understand why anyone would recoil at the topic, especially when asked about your salary by strangers. But perhaps we owe it to each other to talk about it more honestly? I enjoyed Katherine Ormerod’s blog post on her new site Work Work Work on how social media can often distort the truth and free clothes can give a warped idea of one’s salary. I also enjoyed listening to Gaby Dunn’s podcast Bad With Money where she proves most people would rather talk about their favourite ‘position’ in bed, than their bank balance.

So I’m super thrilled and proud to announce that I have partnered with Starling Bank, an app and brand that enables you to see money in a whole new way. In collaboration with them, I am excited to bring out loads more content around money especially focusing on women in business and how to manage and make money. It’s something close to my heart as I know so many people (mainly women; me included obv) who’ve had — or still have — bad relationships with their finances, either feel guilty for suddenly having it, or wasting it, or a failure for not having it, or feel frustrated that they aren’t making what they feel they deserve, or in general are struggling to talk about it openly. The CEO of Starling is inspirational in her own right, Anne Boden, who founded this mobile-only bank aimed to empower people’s relationship with their finances and has an amazing career which I can’t wait to interview her about for podcast soon. I don’t why but I really really like the fact the CEO of Starling is a woman. I remember something Cindy Gallop said that stuck with me: “from the moment women are born, we’re unconsciously made to feel that money is not our area – that it’s a male area. I really want women to make a shit ton of money.”

I travel a lot for work and pleasure and this can also be something that can turn sour and stressful if you don’t plan in advance. Sometimes you have to pay lots of deposits (on hotels for example) that you’re unsure when you’ll get back, or get cash from a foreign ATM, or random charges here and there. The campaign I’m excited to work with Starling on is “Mindful Money, Mindful Travel”, which is what it says on the tin. One thing I love about Starling is the fact you can see your bank balance on their app in REAL-TIME. This shouldn’t be revolutionary, but it is. My other banking apps never showed me what was happening at any exact moment. I’ve had stressful situations while away travelling before because payment delays have meant my balance is not a true reflection of what’s in there, and you can end up feeling a bit on edge.

Download the app here.

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I love how fast you can set up an account with Starling. There are ZERO monthly fees (they are really passionate about transparency – so no sneaky add-ons or charges from them for things like paying on card whilst abroad or sending money to friends). They can also pre-approve you for an overdraft at sign up (following some quick credit checks), which you can quickly access and control in the app if you want it. There are fantastic security features too, including card controls for if you forget where you’ve left it or want to stop certain payments.

The fact that this app has been created from scratch means it’s really up to date already with what people want from banking without any old-fashioned hangovers from the past. You can check out the whole range of features here.

This app has made me feel a lot more in control when it comes to checking my finances. If you fancy signing up to this brilliant banking app, you can skip the queue with my code EMGANNON – just go to starlingbank.com/travel and take it from there.

I genuinely love the team of people behind this app and how SLEEK it is to use.

Hit up the app on here. Please let me know how you get on! 

***This blog post is in partnership with Starling Bank but thoughts are, obvs, all my own.***

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