The quality of the service is arguably even more pressing for many thousands of Irish households. Photograph: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Average monthly price is €60.57, making State sixth dearest developed country

In the days before storm Ophelia supermarkets were buoyed by a sales bounce as shoppers battened down the hatches, Kantar Worldpanel has said. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times

Storm had ‘surprisingly strong effect’ on Irish grocery market, Kantar Worldpanel says

Pricewatch has been hard at work sampling coffee from a range of machines. Photograph: Getty Images

Pricewatch casts a cold eye on coffee makers and narrows it down to this fantastic four

More bang for (foodie) buck in Tesco and M&S up North, but smaller price gap for toys

The Dublin at Christmas procession on  Grafton Street as the city’s Christmas lights are switched on. Photograph: Dave Meehan/The Irish Times

Families and shoppers come out in large numbers for switching-on ceremony

The gift voucher business is worth more than €300m in the Republic each year. File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Social Democrats co-leader brings Bill aimed at stopping firms using overly restrictive terms

Our reader booked the elements of the trip separately so requested the cancellation confirmation from Aer Lingus for the outward journey and the accommodation provider, Sixt car hire and Ryanair (for the homeward journey). There was no problem with any provider but Ryanair. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Our very patient reader contacted the airline after her husband’s serious accident necessitated a cancellation confirmation

Comfortable clothing, eye mask, cushion and ear plugs will make for a pleasant journey

Conor Pope asked readers how they make airports and planes a little less stressful

Minister of State for Trade and Employment, Pat Breen said that while progress was being made and while information and training were available to farmers, there was a need to change the mindset and culture. Photograph:  Arthur Ellis

Of the 21 fatalities so far in 2017, 12 were of farmers aged over 65

Prof Mike Barnes outlines the scientific and medical evidence to back the Cannabis Medicinal Use Regulation Bill 2016. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Proponents say political fear and misinformation behind State’s failure to allow drug

Prof Ronan Lyons, the author of the report, said those who campaign for improved housing outcomes – from fewer people homeless to better standards in rental accommodation – “need to realise that the solution to all these is more supply”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Rate of increase in Dublin 12.3%

A new report from property website daft.ie says rents have risen by more than 11.2% nationally over the last 12 months. Photograph: Frank Miller

Think tank says the figure could be even higher if housing supply issues are not addressed

ESRI warns of danger that potential credit growth could fuel greater house price inflation. Photograph: Frank Miller

Think-tank says houses more affordable here than in many developed countries in OECD

The tracker mortgage scandal has been described as one of the greatest financial swindles in the history of the State. Photograph: iStock

From financial services to broadband to air travel, there are several public bodies charged with protecting the consumer. But what(...)

Conor Pope in Val d’Isère: “I start barrelling down the final slope on my final day in the French Alps in a style and manner which –I presume – makes me look the spit of James Bond fleeing baddies and try to banish the unwelcome thoughts of crunching teeth.”

An all-inclusive holiday almost turns Conor Pope into Homer Simpson’s fat cousin

Irish Water is set to issue almost one million refund cheques. File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

3,000 people have phoned every day since 1st November to change address details for refunds

Research found that 35 per cent of children in third class have their own smart phones with many young people opting to spend First Communion money on such devices. File photograph: Getty Images

Twenty per cent of children spend more than four hours a day online

Some 94 per cent of families reported being affected by the recession, with 23 per cent saying they had been “very significantly” affected. Photograph: Getty Images

Those earning least hit hardest and faced the largest increase in economic stress

Limerick city. Residential property prices outside of Dublin are 29.9 per cent lower than their May 2007 peak.

Increase has accelerated with prices rising 12.8 per cent over past 12 months

“Pedestrians should be held to the same road safety standards as drivers, who after all are paying the price on their motor insurance premium for these kinds of accidents.” File photograph: Getty Images

John Lahart warns distracted pedestrians are ‘more likely to step into oncoming traffic’

The key to good cooking is good shopping. And the key to good shopping is lists. Photograph: iStock

The secrets of buying healthy food cheaply? Smart shopping, porridge, cheap cuts of meat

Air pollution: the EPA is concerned about particulate matter, which largely comes from the burning of solid fuel. Photograph: Matt Cardy/Getty

Burning of solid fuel poses biggest air-quality threat to public health, says EPA

IDA chief executive Martin Shanahan    admitted that doubts about Apple’s commitment to building the data centre in Athenry had mounted over recent months as the delays in the planning process continued. File photograph: Alan Betson

Martin Shanahan disappointed at how planning delays had impacted on ‘hard won’ investment

Home-heating costs have seen the biggest jump, according to the AA’s cost-of-living survey.

When costs of mortgage, food, utilities, motoring, education and health insurance are added up, a family of four faces significant(...)

The Miele Dialog oven is programmed to understand the energy inside the food and it then “measures and controls and regulates the cooking process”, depending on what it is it is cooking, to deliver perfect food all the time.

Conor Pope goes to Germany to discover what's so special about Miele's Dialog oven

People taking part in an anti-water charges protest. Photograph: Eric Luke

Refunds may take place before Christmas but this is dependent on Bill becoming law

Twenty years ago – if you were lucky – you had a landline and if you didn’t you had to rely on a pay phone. There used to be queues at telephone boxes. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Pricewatch: Things we take completely for granted today would have been unimaginable to consumers 20 years ago

The Louvre museum in Paris: one of the most popular attractions in the city. Photograph: Getty Images

Conor Pope asks readers for their best travel tips

A reader writes to say he believes he was initially given the wrong or at best incomplete information on rebooking flights by Aer Lingus.  Photograph: Cathal McNaughton/Reuters

Pricewatch: Readers’ consumer queries and observations

Is Gillette really the best a man can get, or is there a lovelier lather elsewhere?

Banks are horrible to people who are guilty of the most minor transgressions. Spend just a few bob more than you have and you will be hit with ridiculous charges.

From the tracker mortgage scandal to closed branches and ATMs loaded with €50 notes

The Central Bank of Ireland (Dublin HQ above) was harshly criticised by TDs and Senators for the length of time it had taken to hold financial institutions to account over the scandal and accused of a “dereliction of duty” over its handling of the issue. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Mortgage scandal described as ‘greatest consumer rip-off in history of the State’

Philip Lane, governor of the Central Bank,  arriving for the Oireachtas committee meeting at the Dáil with Derville Rowland (left), director general of finanancial conduct, and Sharoin Donnery (right), deputy governor of Central Bank. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Governor says Central Bank has no power to force banks to restore tracker mortgages

Philip Lane, governor of the Central Bank, arriving for the Oireachtas committee meeting at the Dail with Derville Rowland (left), director general of finanancial conduct, and Sharoin Donnery (right), deputy governor of Central Bank. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Bank’s governor says customers affected are entitled to redress and compensation

The Central Bank of Ireland is “the only game in town”, says financial consultant Padraic Kissane. Photograph: Alan Betson

Not sure what the scandal is about or whether your mortgage is affected? Read on

 Governor Philip Lane. The Central Bank has defended the pace of its inquiry, which started two years ago. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Philip Lane says not all lenders addressed ‘unacceptable failings’

Case studies: Victims of tracker mortgage scandal speak out about their ordeal

The Central Bank in Dublin. File photograph: Matt Kavanagh

How badly have the banks behaved? Could it happen again?

The CCPC is acting in the wake of reports that some nursing home residents have been charged as much as €20 if they attend religious services and as €100 a week for other activities. Photograph: Getty Images

Competition and Consumer Protection Commission says it has information ‘which raises serious concerns’

The aim of the scam is to encourage those who see a missed call on their phone to ring the number, after which they will be ripped off. Photograph: Getty Images

Thousands of phone users targeted in telephone scam using international numbers

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said “as a Government we have lost patience” with the banks over the tracker mortgages issue, and described the controversy as “scandalous”. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Action including sanctions to be taken if banks do not move to solve issue – Taoiseach

Governor of the Central Bank Philip Lane has defended the pace of the inquiry into tracker mortgages, which started more than two years ago. Photograph: Alan Betson

Central Bank issues warning over overcharging

Only 23 per cent of the 13,000 mortgage borrowers who were wrongly moved from their tracker rate have received redress and compensation so far, the Central Bank has said.

Number of people affected by scandal rises to 13,000 and is likely to increase further

One in four people sitting on any plane has at least some fear of flying, with one in 10 suffering badly. Photograph: Getty Images

A fear of flying makes sense during a storm, but what about the rest of the time?

Dublin Airport: more than 25 per cent of flights to and from it were cancelled, although the Dublin Airport Authority said a secondary runway had operated for much of Monday afternoon despite the high winds.

Ryanair, EasyJet, Aer Lingus and Flybe halt many flights but secondary runway operates

People watch waves splash over the wall on Coast Road Clontarf, ahead of Hurricane Ophelia hitting Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Here is what to do if your house is flooded, your car is damaged or you miss a flight

“We are regularly asked to vacate a seat by passengers who have booked online and have reserved a seat,” says an irked Irish Rail user, who says the signage does not always reflect such bookings. File photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Regular user ponders lack of ‘reliable system’ so passengers can avoid taking reserved seats

William Prior, the Phoenix Project. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Phoenix Project says courts should wait until new mortgage-to-rent scheme is in place

Carlow Institute of Technology. Photograph: Paddy Whelan

Funds will allow major building projects in 11 third-level institutes across the State

The six months of winter will cost us an average €570 more on gas and electricity than the six months of summer.

How the season’s cold, dark nights can make your wallet a whole lot lighter

Boats moored at Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Leitrim. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Fáilte Ireland want to create a new Way to follow the success of the Wild Atlantic and Ancient East

The Central Bank published new figures showing 12,500 customers were identified up to the end of June as having their mortgages changed.

Call comes as new figures show 12,500 customers had mortgages changed

 Padraic Kissane (left) following a Finance committee meeting.Photograph:  Gareth Chaney Collins

Up to 30,000 homeowners may have been wrongly removed from tracker mortgages

Tracker mortgage scandal: As a result of the banks’ negligence - wilful or otherwise - people were unnecessarily put under huge financial pressure

Q&A: Conor Pope explains the home-loan controversy

(Left-right) Helen Grogan, Hazel Melbourne, Padraig kissane, Thomas Ryan and Niamh Byrne arrive at Leinster House in Dublin, to give evidence during the Oireachtas Finance Committee. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Homeowners tell of trauma, stress and trickery over higher than necessary repayments

The trickle of customers who came into Colm’s Shop on Dublin’s Townsend St ahead of the lunchtime rush on Thursday afternoon were conflicted about the sugar tax and the hike in the price of cigarettes.

‘You could probably improve the way people eat without hitting their pockets’

 People who bought between January 1st 2004 and the end of 2012 will get at least some relief on their mortgage payments until 2020. File photograph: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Budget move to close scheme will increase cost of 300,000 loans

Tan tax: VAT on sunbeds is rising from 13.5 to 23 per cent. Photograph: iStock/Getty

Otherwise, Budget 2018 found a little – perhaps tiny – something for everyone

Third price hike in two years will take price of 20 cigarettes to €12

Photograph: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

Measure could raise €40m a year but reaction to its introduction has been mixed

 Centra, Supervalu and Daybreak stores were targeted by cybercriminals. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Supervalu, Centra and Daybreak stores were targeted by criminals attempting to steal numbers and expiry dates of credit cards

Hotel toiletries, one of the most common items taken from hotel rooms around the world. Photograph: Getty Images

Vodka tumblers, a ‘fancy bag’ ... Readers and hotel staff share their tales of theft

“If you are just a retailer now you are going to have to be a tech company tomorrow.” Photograph: iStock

Traditional retailers are turning to ‘experiential shopping’ to compete

Electric Ireland has become the third energy provider to announce an electricity price increase this week. Photograph: iStockphoto

Price increase follows others announced by Bord Gáis Energy and Airtricity this week

National potato day: try Maris Piper for making chips and for roasting. Photograph: iStock/Getty

We don’t eat as many as we used to. But we know how to grow them in space

Ryanair letter: Michael O’Leary said he was criticising rival airlines’ pilots, not his own, at last month’s agm. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

‘Our members have experienced Ryanair promises before,’ says Ialpa

Reader query: Aer Lingus ignored me when my bag went missing before cruise

Brennans Bread

Among those we didn’t mention were Chef, Baileys, Aer Lingus and a certain newspaper

Eir: “Our customer care team has been in contact to apologise.” Photograph: Maxwells

A long-time Eir customer got more than she bargained for when signing up for a bundle

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary  has been accused of insulting the Oireachtas transport committee by failing to attend a hearing over the flights cancellation controversy. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Ryanair chief’s absence is described as ‘insulting’ at Oireachtas committee meeting

John O’Dwyer,  chief executive of VHI. File photograph: Aidan Crawley.

Insurance consultant says news highlights need to shop around prior to policy renewal

Ryanair is likely to come in for more flak at the Oireachtas committee on transport on Wednesday. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

In Strasbourg speakers accuse airline of ‘slavery’ conditions and of misleading people

The ‘Hospitality Hero’ award went to  James and Beryl Kearney and Gary O’Hanlon of Viewmount House in Longford.

Georgina Campbell award winners include Dax restaurant, Twelve Hotel and Dromoland

At the end of the third quarter, 4,275 properties in Dublin were listed for sale on MyHome.ie, representing 0.9 per cent of the city’s housing stock. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Double-digit price increases set to continue next year, MyHome.ie report forecasts

A Ryanair spokesman said the airline ‘tries to accommodate such reasonable rerouting requests using a guideline (only) of three-times the original airfare’. Photograph: John Stillwell/PA Wire

Airline criticised over restrictions for passengers hit by cancellations

Guinness is sold in more than 150 countries, with 10 million glasses downed every day. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Reuters

The search continues for Irish brands Irish people could not imagine the world without

A Ryanair Boeing 737 at Dublin Airport. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/EPA

Airline agrees to implement measures to ensure customers know their entitlements

Ryanair issued a clarification email on Friday to all affected customers outlining their rights to refunds and flight changes, including being rerouted on another Ryanair flight or completing their journey with other providers and receiving expenses. File photograph: Kevin Coombs/Reuters

Regulator welcomes airline’s commitment to ensure passengers know their rights

An Aer Lingus spokesman said 68 of the passengers affected by the cancellation were rebooked on to a later flight to Ireland on Thursday evening. File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Customers frustrated after airline pulls Lanzarote-Dublin flight

 A member of staff in The Irish Times was lucky enough to snap up a Super Nintendo Entertainment System (Snes) console

Gaming console already re-selling for as much as €600

SSE Airtricity customers are facing an increase in their bills from November 1st.

Firms blames rising network charges and energy costs for €50 per year average increase

Ryanair on Friday  issued updated passenger compensation information following the setting of a deadline by the  Civil Aviation Authority. Photograph: EPA

Airline issues statement after regulator imposed 5pm deadline to inform customers

Ryanair customer service at Dublin Airport. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Many Irish passengers to be affected by airline’s second round of mass cancellations

Why have Ryanais cancelled more flights? File photograph: Alan Betson

What is the airline up to now and what rights to passengers with cancelled flights have?

London Gatwick to Belfast route one scrapped by airline over winter months

Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary. The company said it expected its guidance for profit after tax would stay unchanged at between €1.4 billion and €1.45 billion. Photograph:  Aidan Crawley/Bloomberg

Cost of last week’s flight cancellations ‘should be under €25 million’, says airline

Ryanair said that  by slowing its growth it would eliminate ‘all risk of further flight cancellations’. Photograph: Stephanie Lecocq/EPA

Company to slow growth by flying 25 fewer aircraft in winter and 10 fewer in summer

David Hall was behind the establishment of iCare Housing, a not-for-profit approved housing body. Photograph: Collins Courts

Irish Mortgage Holders’ Organisation says it is a ‘hugely significant day’ for strugglers

Remember a time when having an airline ticket – a ticket that had all sorts of layers of carbon copies – was essential if you were to get from A to B? Not any more

Biometric passports, phone boarding passes ... travel is unrecognisable from 2007

Ryanair cancellations: the airline says that 305,000 alternative routings or refunds – or more than 97 per cent of affected customers – have been processed. Photograph: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Investors should recognise employees’ value, says European pilots’ association

Ryanair aircraft on the tarmac of Charleroi Airport in Belgium. Photograph: Stephanie Lecocq/EPA

We recount some of the remarkable tales generated by Michael O’Leary’s high-flying baby

Laurence Carpenter with costumes worn by Madonna (€16,500) and David Bowie (€7,600)  for sale at the 52nd Irish Antique Dealers Fair at the RDS. Photograph: Fran Veale

Silver spoons and memorabilia at 52nd Antique Dealers Fair taking place at the RDS

Michael O’Leary had said on Thursday that pilots got very well paid for doing what is “a very easy job”  Photograph:  Niall Carson/PA Wire

Pilots rule out short-term action but consider long-term options

A Ryanair jet  comes in to land   at Dublin airport. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

Airline in significant U-turn amid rolling cancellations due to rostering issues

Earlier this week, the airline wrote to pilots offering them bonus payments of up to €12,000, deferred for a year. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Further flight cancellations loom as airline’s roster solution deemed inadequate

A spokesman for MyTaxi said  the change was being rolled out in order to make the company ‘more attractive’ for drivers.  File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

The company says the additional charge is being rolled out in order to attract more drivers

What has been very stressful for some passengers has been problems with the Ryanair website and the difficulty of making contact with the airline.  Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Stress, disappointment and anger continues for some of the airline’s stranded passengers

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy, speaks to the media about the Residential Tenancies Boardâ’ s latest Quarterly Rent Index Report on the opening day of the National Ploughing Championships in Screggan, Co Offaly. Photograph: Laura Hutton/Collins Photo Agency

Rental costs up 6.6% in year to June, setting new record, Residential Tenancies Board finds

Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary during  Monday’s press conference. Between four and six flights into and out of Dublin Airport will be cancelled by the carrier every day between now and  end of October. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

O’Leary apologises for ‘mess’ that will see 48 flights every day cancelled across Europe

Sitting under an “Always Getting Better” banner, O’Leary explained how things had got a whole lot worse both for his airline and for many of its passengers in recent days. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

While Ryanair can break up with you, they are banking on you not breaking with them

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