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Best Budgeting App UK

What is the best budgeting app in the UK?

It all depends on many factors. I tested four of them so that you can compare side by side and decide yourself which money saving or budgeting app is best suited for your needs.

The most popular budgeting apps in the UK

There are plenty of them but I picked up these to analyse:

  • Yolt (ING Group)
  • Snoop
  • GoSavex
  • Emma

Why to use budgeting apps? (TABLE)

For me, it was the at glance view I needed. I have 5 different bank accounts – set up at the pre-COVID-19 times where saving money and reaping benefits of bank switches was a sensible activity. So in order to monitor these from time to time, a budgeting app sounded like a handy solution.

Memory and Disc and battery power usage + features of the top budgeting apps

AppDisk SpaceMost UK BanksBudgetingMoney Saving tipsBattery usageCPU usage timeCashbackGraphsStealth mode
Yolt145MBYesYesNo32.01mAh3:24YesYesYes
Emma81.30MBYesYesNo124.57mAh9:34YesYesYes
Snoop46.06MBYesYesYes80.51 mAh6minNoNoNo
GoSaves92.50MBYesYesNo15.81 mAh1:28NoYesNo
Tested on Huawei Pro Mate 10
The best budgeting apps in the UK - review
The best budgeting apps in the UK – review

YOLT

I have been using this app for a few years now and it looks like it’s one of the most ‘sophisticated’ on the market. There are 5 icons on the bottom navigation bar.

Yolt Dashboard

On the main dashboard, you can see all accounts balance but also separate accounts and cards to click on for more info. 

You also see your total spent and graph with the data comparing the spent to the previous period.

You also get to see all categories at glance – although that graph is hugely inaccurate so one may dig deeper to see categories.

The dashboard also shows savings. Although for me it doesn’t detect the savings accounts I have so it looks like poor sync in that regard or maybe I have too little on my savings account admittedly I dont have many savings accounts as I save money in another way… 

When analysing your transactions (4th tab at the bottom of app menu) they are ordered by:

  • Categories mostly correct but not always
  • Merchants – all spent by the brands you got stuff from but also your income 
  • Timeline aka online statement
  • Tags – for you to tag items further

Yolt action

The second tab called ‘Action’ is a marketplace with products like 

  • savings growth (Raisin)
  • insurance (pay by mile car insurance, Homelyfe, Simple insurance, Pluto)
  • pensions (PensionBee)
  • investments (from Wheltify)
  • sending money abroad (FXcompared)
  • gas & energy switching options (MoneySupermarket)
  • borrowing (Monevo)

Tracking 

  • Budgets
  • Bills and subscriptions
  • Earning rewards aka cashback if you start a purchase on a site you arrived to straight from YOLT

Yolt pay

The next button is to pay from within the app when using any of your connected apps. I havent used that but believe it works as if you were paying straight from your bank account, so potentially it saves you from logging to your regular bank now you are already inYOLT.

Yolt PROS

  • Easy accounts connections
  • You see all your accounts in one place
  • You see all regular payments (bills, subscriptions etc)
  • Money insights – really nice spent view- I like to see which brand is the one I spent the most so I can optimise the spent
  • Utility switching available as well as many more financial services
  • Second best re battery drainage – amongst compared by me

Yolt CONS

  • You get money-saving tips albeit its 1 blog article with rather generic and simple tips, not reactive tailor-made to brand offers
  • Needs the most of disk space amongst compared
  • Some transactions get an incorrect category
  • sync sometimes fails so you need to reconnect 
  • second best re battery drainage – amongst compared by me

EMMA

Colorful and at first glance similar to YOLT. 5 icons in the app bottom screen menu.

EMMA Feed

Starting with the FEED that shows :

  • The balance at glance, 
  • Opportunities to analyse spent (bills), 
  • Our spent report (my Amazon addiction sadly confirmed by stats) 
  • Recent transaction & weekly spent
  • Money left in a given period (if you set up payday periods and budget spent). I like the fact they separate committed spent from any other irregular one.
  • Countdown to next payday
  • ‘What did I spend on’ – you can filter by period or brand
  • Subscriptions (mortgages, insurance any regular bills, etc)
  • Cashback offers

EMMA Analytics

The second tab ANALYTICS analyses all you spend in detail in a given pay period. It’s done by categories or by merchants. What I like is the fact they exclude the money I send between my accounts as a part of the ‘required for perks balance’ standing order chain…

EMMA Save Money

The third tab ‘SAVE MONEY’ shows ideas how the app can help with saving money(similarly to YOLT they offer help with switching utilities, combining pensions, starting to invest, comparing insurance etc. 

EMMA Accounts

ACCOUNTS shows the balance, savings, investments and loans in a visual form.

EMMA More

The last tab MORE focuses on extras such as signing up for a PRO version or cashback offers 

EMMA PROS

  • Easy accounts connections
  • You see all your accounts in one place
  • You see all regular payments (bills, subscriptions, etc)
  • Beautiful UX
  • Best budgeting functionality amongst all compared
  • Most categories correct and quick, my today’s online spent correctly categorised
  • Money insights – loads of GRAPHS – which I love
  • Utility switching available (energy, broadband & mobile)
  • Insurance or mortgage comparison
  • Needs little disk space – 2nd best on my list when comparing all 4
  • You earn money when you refer friends and they have that offer pinned on the top & bottom of the app screen (under FEED)

EMMA CONS

  • Worst re battery drainage – amongst compared by me
  • They offer help finding loans – as a money-saving blogger I dislike that section

SNOOP

Snoop is an artificial intelligence bot which offers you money management – you see the bank accounts on the top of the screen. You can click on any of them for more info.

You have 3 options to see:

Snoop Transactions

You see transactions from all accounts at a glance.

Snoop Categories

Categories for Money in & Money out (income, general, shopping, home & family and finances)

Snoop Regular Payments

Regular payments (insurance, fees, taxes, mortgage, anything else, etc.)

Snoop PROS

  • Easy accounts connections
  • You see all your accounts in one place
  • You see all regular payments (bills, subscriptions etc)
  • Money insights
  • Utility switching available (energy, broadband & mobile)
  • Needs little disk space
  • Snoop finds deals based on the transaction you spent money on
  • They are crowd-sourcing deals from customers so you can submit your deal

Snoop CONS

  • Some transactions get an incorrect category
  • Poor sync (no salary or mortgage payments registered in last 2 months)
  • Third best re battery drainage – amongst compared by me

Gosavex

Very simple design and functionalities compared to the others.

4 icons on the bottom navigation of the app.

Gosavex Home

HOME shows current balance. What I don’t like is the fact they include my credit card limit into the balance. As I never use it up and don’t treat my credit card as ‘my money’ I dont like that combo here. No other app does include that in their total balance calculations. 

They categorise spent applying 2 criteria:

  • General
  • Bills 

Show last transactions but the latest are showing as uncategorised (bought by me today items although I see items from last Friday too).

Gosavex Analytics

Next tab shows categories, subscriptions, and merchants. My income includes internal transfers which aren’t my income but the standing orders of my money transferred between various accounts so that I ensure I qualify for some benefits of the accounts I send money between. Mind you most of the apps struggles with that..One of my internal transfers is also categorised as a subscription whereas it is no subscription at all. After applying ‘exclude’ it doesn’t seem to refresh instantly. Subtab Merchants shows incorrect data as again I see some incorrect labels/categories.

Gosavex Friends & family Loans

They have a LOAN tab and it is aimed at making family and friends loans. When requesting a dummy loan I didn’t spot at first T&Cs even when you scroll down (didn’t assume I have to scroll down) so I was pressing NEXT and nothing was happening. It looks like you can send a friend loan request form the app and your loan giver needs to go to the app to …

Gosavex Wallet

The last tab WALLET analyses 3 months income spent and savings plus give us projections. Sadly one cant clicks on any of these to check the details.

Gosavex PROS

  • Easy accounts connections
  • You see all your accounts in one place
  • You see all regular payments (bills, subscriptions, etc)
  • Simple design, yet many merchants logos aren’t showing
  • Unique printable report summary (compare your spending and income of 2 years through charts and graphs)
  • The best re battery drainage – amongst compared by 
  • They are working on an automated guarantee 
  • They are working on products guarantee integrated with the app

Gosavex CONS

  • Some transactions get an incorrect category
  • Poor sync ( salary & some transactions doubled in a given month)
  • Money insights – average on the last 3 months of spent and saving
  • No money saving tips just stats comparing you against the population
  • Needs some disk space – 2nd amongst compared

Lately, I saw a post from my friend @mrmoneyjar and he was actually praising Money Dashboard as his fav budgeting app as it’s everywhere no matter if he is on desktop or his phone…So it wins with aloof the above if you need a multi-device budgeting app.

My fav one is EMMA not because of the beautiful interface although a nice design helps but mainly as it’s the cleverest in recognizing what is what and separating the money correctly between the right categories even on a day of purchase. It also shows what is left in a budget and how many days till the next payday. All pretty good functionalities I want from a budgeting app. I also like Snoopbut only for the news and tips on saving money connected to the brands I spend my money on. So wish I had EMMA & SNOOP in one app.

However if the above doesn’t convince you to try any of the compared apps how about using a paper version of the budget?  

A while ago I wrote a whole post about Kakebo as I love anything Japanese…Check it out.

About admin

I am Martyna aka Money Saving Girl. I love to share with you my money saving tips about free samples, shopping tricks, iTunes, various discount apps, sites and reward programs. Occasionally I write about traveling or insurance.

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