Once upon a time Rice Krispie buns, a jam sponge, TK red lemonade and Tayto were all you needed for a kids' party. Fast forward to the 21st Century and it's all playzones, go-karts and paracetamol for mammy and daddy. How much for a Saturday afternoon party for 10 kids at a specialised playzone venue near Cork city (sausages and the like thrown in for munchies)?
Best: €125.55 (McCools, Supernova)
Avoid: €149.50 (Chuckies)
Transport Minister Leo Varadkar has just announced a whole new raft of motoring penalty point increases. Anyone with a heavy foot or who's prone to gabbing incessantly on the phone better watch out. Now, if only he'd stop crazy cyclists from wearing headphones.
How much for fully comprehensive insurance for a 34-year-old female driving a BMW 116 iSE (122) living in Co Kerry, with a five-year no claims bonus but five penalty points on her licence?
Best: €522.17 (Axa via Chill Insurance)
Avoid: €3,718.40 (Asgard via Chill Insurance)
It seems everyone's running these days – some from the banks, others from the Revenue Commissioners, and others just for fun. If you've been at it for a while, maybe it's time to get serious with your gadgets. How much for a Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS Running Watch, in violet?
Best: €109.39 (Amazon)
Avoid: €119 (Fitness Digital)
Evenings are longer and, while spring may not quite be in the air just yet, there's no harm dreaming about dusting off the tent and getting back (sort of) to nature once the summer comes. How much to pitch your family tent (two adults and two kids) for a week at a caravan and tent park in Co Wicklow during the peak season?
Best: €224 (River Valley Holiday Park)
Avoid: €238 (Roundwood and Hidden Valley)
You'll never get the money you put into home improvements back when you sell the property, but who cares if you're planning to stay put? What's more, the conservatory is perfect for banishing little terrors to when the grandchildren come to visit.
How much does it cost to borrow €10,000 at a variable interest rate over five years from a bank that doesn't have to be your own?
Best: Bank of Ireland – €217.10 a month (€13,026 repaid in total at 11.5 per cent APR)
Avoid: PTSB €219.36 a month (€13,161.42 in total at 12 per cent APR)