MORE than 700 people joined Glasgow Credit Union in the run-up to Christmas.
Thousands of people are signing up to credit unions as an ethical and affordable alternative to high-interest money lenders.
In the last two months of 2013, Glasgow Credit Union dealt with more than 1600 inquiries and signed up 733 new members - a 260% increase on the previous year. The influx followed the Scottish Government's '12 Days of Debtmas' and 'A Helping Hand with Debt' campaigns.
Enterprise Minister Fergus Ewing said: "Credit union membership enables Scots at every income level access to loans, repayable at a more affordable interest rate than those of payday lenders, which can be as high as 5000%.
"I urge businesses not already associated with a credit union to consider this free employee benefit."
Kingdom Credit Union in Fife attracted 391 new members in November and December last year.