AGL vs EnergyAustralia: Who should you choose?

AGL is one of Australia’s largest energy providers, offering a competitive service across most areas. Some smaller challenger retailers have gained traction in recent years, however, increasing competition and giving consumers more options to consider. One of the biggest rivals to AGL is EnergyAustralia, with the two going head to head in most states. In this report, we compare the two companies and how much you their plans might cost you across Victoria, New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland.

Victoria

AGL and EnergyAustralia both offer three plans to Victorian residents with varying rates and discounts depending on your electricity distributor. EnergyAustralia’s plans are the Flexi Saver, Anytime Saver and Rate Fix plans. The first two are variable rate open contracts, while the third is a two-year fixed rate contract.

  • Flexi Saver: Customers on this plan can have up to 32% of their electricity usage charges discounted. This is made up of a 30% pay on time discount and a bonus 2% discount for nominating to receive your bills via email. EnergyAustralia’s Flexi Saver has no exit fees and a benefit period of one year. EnergyAustralia estimates this plan has a monthly cost of just $72 for a 3-4 person household for customers on the Citipower network.
  • Anytime Saver:This plan has a smaller usage rate discount than the Flexi Saver, offering 18%. This discount however applies regardless of whether your bills are received by email or paid on time, making it a great option for those customers who sometimes fall behind on their bills. Like the Flexi Saver, there are no exit fees and it has a benefit period of one year. EnergyAustralia estimates this plan will cost $78 a month for medium energy-use households on the Citipower network.
  • Rate Fix:This plan freezes your rates, so what you’re charged will not unexpectedly increase within the next two years. The downside is that it has a lock-in contract with an exit fee of $70 or $50 depending on if you leave in the first or second year of the contract. Like most fixed plans out there, there are no discounts available on this plan. To compensate, the usage and supply charges on this plan are slightly lower than those on the Flexi Saver or Anytime Saver electricity plans. EnergyAustralia’s Rate fix plan also gives you $100 off on your first bill.

AGL’s electricity plans in Victoria are named Set and Forget, Saver, and Fixed. AGL provides flexible billing options on most plans and eligible customers who sign up online will receive $50 credit towards their first bill. Customers who also have a gas account with AGL receive an additional ‘double-up’ discount of 2%.

  • AGL Set and Forget: This is a variable rate plan with a benefit period of one year. Customers on this plan who pay their bill using direct debit receive 28% off usage charges. This is great if you’re comfortable with the idea of direct debiting, or just don’t want to deal too heavily with your utility company.
  • AGL Savers: Similar to the Set and Forget plan, this is a variable rate plan with a one-year benefit period. The key difference is that instead of a direct debit discount, it offers up to 25% off on electricity usage charges for customers who pay their bill on time.
  • AGL Fixed: This is a two-year fixed rate plan meaning that usage rates won’t increase for two years. The rates are lower than AGL’s variable rate plans mentioned above, however it offers no discounts.

Who is cheapest in Victoria?

When comparing which provider is cheapest in Melbourne, we will take a closer look at the best discounted plans of both. For EnergyAustralia, its best discount is its Flexi Saver at a whopping 32%. AGL’s best discount is slightly lower at 28% with its Set and Forget deal. The costs displayed in the following table are based on an average five-person household once discounts have been applied.

State Provider Plan Discount Quarterly cost
Victoria EnergyAustralia Flexi Saver 32% $379.31
Victoria AGL Set and Forget 28% $396.86

Costs based on yearly usage calculation broken into quarterly payments. Average energy consumption figures from the AER published Dec 2014. Usage figures are for a five-person household with no pool on the Citipower network. Figures correct as at October 2016.

New South Wales

AGL and EnergyAustralia each have three plans on offer for Sydney and New South Wales customers. The contract terms are similar to those in Victoria, though the usage rate discounts are smaller. Here is how EnergyAustralia lines up:

  • Flexi Saver: This is an open term variable rate plan with a one-year benefit that includes a discount up to 18% off usage rates for customers who receive bills and correspondence by email and pay on time. EnergyAustralia estimates an average Sydney home on the Ausgrid network would pay $80 per month on this plan.
  • Anytime Saver:This is a simple plan that applies a 12% discount guaranteed. It’s the safest bet if you’re not sure you can always pay your bills on time. EnergyAustralia estimates that this will cost $84 for Sydney area homes with medium energy usage.
  • Rate fix: This plan remains relatively similar to the other states. It’s a fixed rate contract so your rates won’t increase for at least two years. However, there are exit fees and no discounts. Customers who sign up to the rate fix plan will receive $50 off on their first bill. EnergyAustralia estimates this plan to will cost households $84 per month.

AGL’s New South Wales residential electricity plans are also similar to those offered in Victoria, with the only considerable change being the difference in rates and discounts. New South Wales customers who sign up online will receive $50 credit toward their first bill.

  • AGL Set and Forget: This variable rate plan gives Ausgrid residential customers 20% off usage charges when they pay using direct debit. It is a variable rate plan with a benefit period of one year.
  • AGL Savers: Customers on this plan will receive a 19% discount when they pay on time. Similar to AGL’s Set and Forget plans, this is a no lock in variable rate contract with a benefit period of one year. After this year, customers will be placed on a new contract.
  • AGL Fixed: This is a two-year fixed rate contract. This means that your rates will not change within a two-year period, but there are exit fees for cancelling the plan early.

Who is cheapest in New South Wales?

To compare prices in NSW, let’s look at EnergyAustralia and AGL’s deals with the highest discounts. For AGL, this is the Set and Forget plan, while EnergyAustralia’s best discount is in its Flexi Saver plan. We have crunched the numbers for an average five-person household in Sydney that consumes 18.8kWh per day, taking into consideration both usage and supply charges as well as conditional discounts.

State Provider Plan Discount Quarterly cost
NSW EnergyAustralia Flexi Saver 18% $439.89
NSW AGL Set and Forget 18% $453.34

Costs based on yearly usage calculation broken into quarterly payments. Average energy consumption figures from the AER published Dec 2014. Usage figures are for a five-person household with no pool on the Ausgrid network. Figures correct as at October 2016.

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South Australia

South Australians unfortunately face the highest electricity rates in the country, however those who sign up to the right plan can still have access to considerable discounts. EnergyAustralia offers the same three plans it offers in New South Wales and Victoria, but includes an additional deal – the ‘Power plan’.

  • Flexi Saver: This deal has a discount of up to 20%, which is made up of an 18% pay on time discount and a 2% discount for receiving your bills and correspondence through email. EnergyAustralia’s website estimates this plan to cost a medium energy household in Adelaide $99 per month.
  • Anytime Saver: Arguably EnergyAustralia’s simplest plan, this includes a flat 12% guaranteed discount. The benefit period is one-year and there are no exit fees. EnergyAustralia says the average 3-4 person household on this plan should expect to pay $104 a month.
  • Rate fix: This plan ensures your rates don’t change for a period of two years. This plan includes $100 credit on the first bill, however, there are exit fees for leaving early and there are no discounts. EnergyAustralia estimates this plan will cost a low energy user $114 a month.
  • Power Plan: EnergyAustralia’s Power Plan deal has the same variable rate as its other plans, however it includes a 21% pay on time discount on usage charges. Aside from the slightly higher discount, the Power Plan distinguishes itself from the Flexi Saver by including a bonus $50 donation to ‘Power to end Hunger’ or a $100 Port store gift voucher. The benefit period of this plan is for two years and includes exit fees for leaving early. EnergyAustralia estimates this plan to cost $96 a month for a low energy user.

AGL does not offer South Australian customers a fixed rate plan, though its Set and Forget and Savers deals are still available.

  • AGL Set and Forget: This electricity plan has a discount of 16% on usage charges for customers who pay their bills using direct debit. This is a variable rate deal which lasts for one year before being transferred to a new plan, however, customers are free to leave any time without exit fees.
  • AGL Savers: The AGL savers deal includes a 15% pay on time discount on usage charges. Again, it is a variable rate plan with a one year benefit period and no exit fees for leaving early.

Who is cheapest in South Australia?

We will compare the highest discounted plans of each retailer. EnergyAustralia’s largest discount for Adelaide customers is included in its Power Plan, while AGL’s best discount comes with its Set and Forget deal. Below we have crunched the numbers for the average five-person household, taking into account usage and supply costs, as well as conditional discounts. See our comparison of electricity retailers in South Australia to find out how these two compare to the rest of the field on price.

State Provider Plan Discount Quarterly cost
SA EnergyAustralia Power Plan 21% $617.74
SA AGL Set and Forget 16% $594.70

Costs based on yearly usage calculation broken into quarterly payments. Average energy consumption figures from the AER published Dec 2014. Usage figures are for a five-person household with no pool on the SA Power Network. Rates correct as at October 2016.

Queensland

EnergyAustralia offers Queenslanders the same products as New South Wales and Victorian residents, however the discounts and bonuses are considerably smaller.

  • Flexi Saver: This plan has a maximum 16% discount on usage rates for paying your bill on time. EnergyAustralia estimates this plan will cost a medium usage household in Brisbane $100 per month.
  • Anytime Saver: This includes an 8% discount guaranteed regardless of how or when you pay. This is a variable rate plan with a one-year benefit period and no exit fees. The EnergyAustralia website says it expects this plan to cost a medium-usage household $105 a month.
  • Rate fix: This plan ensures your rates don’t increase within the next two years. It’s a great choice for those who like a bit more certainty, but it’s a two-year contract and green energy options are not available on a fixed rate. EnergyAustralia estimates this plan will cost a 3-4 person household $106 a month.

Similarly, AGL offers its standard three plans in Queensland, but the discounts are considerably smaller. Customers who sign up online to any of the below three plans will also receive $25 credit on their first bill.

  • AGL Set and Forget: Again this plan offers a discount for those who sign up to pay their bill through direct debit. The discount applied for this in Brisbane is 12%. This plan and AGL savers are variable rate contracts with a benefit period of 12 months.
  • AGL Savers: The main feature of this plan is its 11% discount on usage charges for paying on time. It is on a variable rate for a benefit period of one-year and customers are free to leave at any time without penalty.
  • AGL Fixed: A two-year contract which freezes your rates, protecting you from unexpected price hikes. Keep in mind however that this is a two-year contract, so there are fees for cancelling early. Additionally, there are no bonus discounts on this plan.

Who is cheapest in Queensland?

We have calculated which energy company is cheaper in Queensland by comparing the expected cost of AGL’s and EnergyAustralia’s highest discounted plans. The best AGL discount is 12% in its Set and Forget deal, while EnergyAustralia’s Flexi Saver discount is slightly higher at 14%. But which plan works out cheaper?

State Provider Plan Discount Quarterly cost
Qld EnergyAustralia Flexi Saver 16% $491.84
Qld AGL Set and Forget 12% $507.55

Costs based on yearly usage calculation broken into quarterly payments. Average energy consumption figures from the AER published Dec 2014. Usage figures are for a five-person household with no pool on the Energex Network. Rates correct as at October 2016.

How to find the best deal?

Both AGL and EnergyAustralia are perfectly viable choices as an electricity retailer. Remember that our price comparisons in this article are specific examples of expected costs. Energy retailers are desperate for your custom and you may be able to organise a better deal by contacting the company directly. Remember to carefully read the energy price factsheets before signing up to an electricity deal to make sure it’s right for you.

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