In the face of a significant 8.2% increase in the cost of living for the average New Zealand household over the 12 months leading up to December 2022 1, Kiwis across the country are feeling the pinch. As a result, there’s pressure for people to adjust their spending habits to make ends meet, sacrificing socialising, delaying holidays, and cutting back on essential items like groceries. This challenging situation is leading to concerning potential consequences, including delaying necessary health appointments and jeopardising the overall well-being of New Zealanders2.

Specsavers Senior Audiologist Kathryn Launchbury shed light on the issue, highlighting the growing impact of the rising cost of living. "We already know that, on average, it takes Kiwis around 10 years to take action if they have hearing loss," she explained. "However, given the current state of the cost of living, this timeline could become even longer as people face pressure to forgo health appointments, including vital hearing assessments and related healthcare costs and services. Such actions put their health at risk."3

The alarming reality is that hearing loss often goes undiagnosed and untreated for years, potentially leading to communication issues with family and friends, social withdrawal, and a decline in mental wellbeing. In light of this, Kathryn emphasised the importance of seeking help early to minimise the impact hearing loss can have. Even though the cost of living has risen, Specsavers Audiology remains committed to providing accessible services to those in need.

Specsavers, a renowned provider of audiology services, aims to bridge the gap by offering free 15-minute hearing checks to individuals concerned about their hearing health.* These checks can help identify potential issues and determine if further action is required. If you choose to purchase hearing aids, Specsavers offers aftercare services, ensuring ongoing support and assistance for those who require it.

Launchbury stressed the significance of addressing hearing loss promptly, stating, "The longer people postpone seeking help, the more detrimental the effects on their overall quality of life can be. By taking advantage of the free hearing checks provided by Specsavers, New Zealanders can take proactive steps towards maintaining their hearing health without worrying about financial constraints."

To book a free 15-minute hearing check, interested people are encouraged to online at

In a time when the cost of living is straining budgets and forcing difficult choices, it is essential for New Zealanders to prioritise their health and well-being. By addressing hearing loss concerns early on, people can avoid further complications and maintain a high quality of life. Specsavers Audiology remains dedicated to providing accessible services to help people overcome financial barriers and take charge of their hearing health.

* If further testing is required, a fee may apply.


  1. The cost of living for the average household increased by 8.2% in the 12 months to December 2022 (StatsNZ)
  2. Consumer concerns about the economic climate is increasing with 43% very concerned in April 2023 in comparison to 39% very concerned in September 2022. The likelihood of reduced spending in NZ is growing with 57% people surveyed saying its likely they will reduced spend. (Kantar Economy Report, commissioned by Specsavers 2023)
  3. People are delaying taking action if they have hearing loss as it generally takes an average of 10 years for them to take action.

Additional information

Back to News