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Pack your lunch and add thousands to your pension

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Bringing a packed lunch to work is a sure-fire way to save money but it could also make you richer in retirement, research shows.

Nearly a quarter (24%) of UK workers never prepare a meal to eat at work, but with the average cost of buying lunch coming in at £4.46, they could be missing out on thousands of pounds by the time they reach retirement, the study by Fidelity International said.

Calculations by the firm show workers need to save just £4.25 a day, on top of their auto enrolment contributions, to reach their retirement savings target.

Under its guidelines, Brits should aim to save a pension pot equal to 1x their annual household income by the time they are 30, 2x by the time they are 40, increasing to 7x by the time their state pension kicks in at 68.

A poll by Fidelity shows 49% of UK workers would be more likely to make their lunch at home if they knew it would take them closer to their savings goal.

Maike Currie, investment director at Fidelity International, said: “Instagram is awash with meal prep selfies and it’s not just the health benefits that make this a trend we should all encourage. Spending over £4 on lunch a day doesn’t feel like much but over the course of a lifetime this money, saved into a pension with the benefits of compounding, could add up to thousands. Ultimately, it has the potential to change a person’s retirement lifestyle.”

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