South Africans again urged to spend responsibly during holidays

With the high Christmas expenditure affecting many consumers, the National Credit Regulator (NCR) is warning the public not to borrow money from loan sharks.

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CAPE TOWN/JOHANNESBURG - With the high Christmas expenditure affecting many consumers, the National Credit Regulator (NCR) is warning the public not to borrow money from loan sharks.

It says the loan sharks are creating problems for consumers because they give loans without doing proper affordability assessments.

The regulator says the lenders are illegally keeping people’s important documents such as identity books, bank or Sassa cards.

The NCR’s Lesiba Mashapa says people should spend within their means.

“First of all you need to set your spending priorities and have a proper budget. Also remember that children must go back to school when January comes. We advise consumers that any loan received from an unregistered lender is an unlawful loan.”

At the same time, South Africans who will be visiting casinos during the festive season have been cautioned to be responsible.

The South African Responsible Gambling Association says many locals visit casinos to gamble as part of festive season activities.

Executive director Sibongile Simelane-Quntana says gambling should be controlled and managed and shouldn't place strain on your finances.

Simelane-Quntu says they expect an increase in the number of people calling their helpline during this time.

“Go there to entertain yourselves. Don’t go there to win. Plan ahead of time on how much you are willing to spend and be honest with yourself.”

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)