Origin Energy Review and Rates

Origin Energy is an integrated energy company, generating and selling electricity and natural gas to households across Australia. With more than four million customers, Origin is one of the largest electricity retailers in the country, drawing on its size and experience to offer customers a wide range of products and services.

While it was previously one of many retailers to offer short-term, big conditional discounts, Origin completely revamped its product offerings in July 2019 following intense media scrutiny of the energy industry and a raft of new regulations. The end result is that Origin now provides a more concise suite of simplified energy plans, moving away from the big discount marketing of the past.

In this review, Canstar Blue looks at what Origin Energy offers residential electricity customers, and how much you can expect to pay, whether you live in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia or Queensland. We closely examine Origin’s services and assess whether this retailer is the best choice for you. While you may pay more for electricity with Origin than with some other energy companies, Origin boasts comprehensive customer service and online self-service facilities that may make the extra cost worthwhile.

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Origin Energy Plans

Like most retailers, Origin Energy made significant changes to its plan line up in July 2019, due to new energy market regulations coming into effect. While many retailers moved away from having various market offers, Origin Energy still provides a variety of plans, each with their own draw cards, which we’ll discuss in detail below.

What you’ll now find from Origin Energy is three market offers – called the Max Saver, Flexi and Freedom – all of which hold a percentage off the Reference Price respective to the area you’re in, with the Origin Max Saver plan carrying an additional discount when you sign up online. In addition to Origin Energy’s market offers, the retailer also has a basic offer that simply matches the Reference Price or Victorian Default Offer (VDO) depending on where you live, as well as two solar-specific products with highest rates but generous feed-in tariffs.

Origin Max Saver

The Origin Max Saver is marketed toward savvy electricity customers looking for the biggest savings from the energy giant. It comes with a notable saving compared with the reference price, which varies depending on where you live. There is no lock-in contract or exit fees, and comes with a further discount for customers who signup online.

Origin Flexi

Much like Origin’s Max Saver plan, this product comes with a notable saving off the Reference Price. Albeit a slightly smaller saving compared with the Max Saver, this plan is more flexible as it doesn’t rely on eligibility criteria such as setting up direct debiting from the get go. This is a no-lock in contract plan that has no exit fees.

Origin Freedom

Origin Freedom comes with reasonable savings off the reference price, but the key features that differentiate it from Origin’s other plans are that this plan doesn’t charge card payment fees, late payment fees, payment process fees or paper bill fees.

Origin Basic

This plan simply matches the Reference Price/VDO in each area, not offering any discounts and making it Origin’s most expensive product. It comes with no exit fees or lock-in contract.

Origin Solar Boost

This plan is designed for customers with solar panels within SA and the ACT. It includes a boosted feed-in tariff of between 15c/kWh and 18c/kWh, depending on your location. On top of this, the Solar Boost plan also comes with a saving off the Reference Price in the case of SA, and off usage and supply charges in the ACT. This contract is for a benefit period of one year.

Origin Solar Optimiser

This solar offering from Origin is available to customers in NSW, QLD and VIC, holding no savings off the Reference Price or VDO. You can expect to see a higher feed-in tariff than what’s available on Origin’s standard plans of between 15c/kWh and 21c/kWh. This plan has a 12-month benefit period and carries no exit fees or lock-in contracts.

Origin Electricity Prices

We’ve outlined Origin’s electricity plans, but what about the specific prices you can expect to pay? Here’s an idea.

Victoria

Here are the Origin Energy plans on our database for Victoria. These costs are based on the Citipower network in Melbourne but prices will vary depending on your circumstances. Plans are listed in order of lowest price first. See here for further information on the VDO, which in this comparison assumes general energy usage of 4000kWh/year, meaning that the VDO is $1,334/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison. Our database may not cover all deals in your area, and please check retailer websites for up to date information.

Brand Features Price(estimated˜)
Origin Logo
Energy Fact Sheet

Max Saver – Online Special

Conditional Discounts

  • 6% less than VDO for direct debit & eFulfilment discount

Other Features:

  • Online sign-up only
Equal To VDO> $1,281
incl. conditional discount 
More Details
Origin Logo
Energy Fact Sheet

Max Saver

Conditional Discounts

  • 5% less than VDO for direct debit & eFulfilment discount
Equal To VDO> $1,291
incl. conditional discount
More Details
Origin Logo
Energy Fact Sheet

Flexi

No Conditional Discounts

3% LessThan VDO> $1,297

More Details
Origin Logo
Energy Fact Sheet

Solar Boost Plus

No Conditional Discounts

Other Features:

  • 15c/kWh Feed-in Tariff
1% Less Than VDO> $1,326

More Details
Origin Logo
Energy Fact Sheet

Basic

No Conditional Discounts

Equal To VDO> $1,337 More Details
View all electricity plans listed on Canstar Blue

NSW

Here are the Origin Energy plans on our database for NSW. These costs are based on the Ausgrid network in Sydney but prices will vary depending on your circumstances. Plans are listed in order of lowest price first. See here for further information on the Reference Price, which in this comparison assumes general usage of 3900kWh/year, meaning the Reference Price is $1,467/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison. Our database may not cover all deals in your area, and please check retailer websites for up to date information.

Brand Features Price(estimated**)
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Max Saver – Online Special

No Conditional Discounts

Other Features:

  • Online sign-up only
13% Less Than Reference Price^^ $1,279

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Max Saver

No Conditional Discounts

12% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,294

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Flexi

No Conditional Discounts

10% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,324

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Freedom

No Conditional Discounts

9% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,338

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Solar Boost Plus

No Conditional Discounts

Other Features:

  • 23c/kWh Feed-in Tariff
1% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,448

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Basic

No Conditional Discounts

EqualTo Reference Price^^ $1,471

More Details
View all electricity plans listed on Canstar Blue

Queensland

Here are the Origin Energy plans on our database for SE QLD. These costs are based on the Energex network in Brisbane but prices will vary depending on your circumstances. Plans are listed in order of lowest price first. See here for further information on the Reference Price, which in this comparison assumes general usage of 4600kWh/year, meaning the Reference Price is $1,570/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison. Our database may not cover all deals in your area, and please check retailer websites for up to date information.

Brand Features Price(estimated**)
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Max Saver – Online Special

No Conditional Discounts

Other Features:

  • Online sign-up only
11% Less Than Reference Price^^ $1,401

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Max Saver

No Conditional Discounts

10% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,417

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Flexi

No Conditional Discounts

9% LessThan Reference price^^ $1,433

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Freedom

No Conditional Discounts

4% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,511

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Solar Boost Plus

No Conditional Discounts

Other Features:

  • 20c/kWh Feed-in Tariff
EqualTo Reference Price^^ $1,563

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Basic

No Conditional Discounts

EqualTo Reference Price^^ $1,574

More Details
View all electricity plans listed on Canstar Blue

South Australia

Here are the Origin Energy plans on our database for South Australia. These costs are based on SA Power network in Adelaide but prices will vary depending on your circumstances. Plans are listed in order of lowest price first. See here for further information on the Reference Price, which in this comparison assumes general usage of 4000kWh/year, meaning the Reference Price is $1,941/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison. Our database may not cover all deals in your area, and please check retailer websites for up to date information.

Brand Features Price(estimated**)
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Max Saver – Online Special

No Conditional Discounts

Other Features:

  • Online sign-up only
15% Less Than Reference Price^^ $1,654

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Max Saver

No Conditional Discounts

14% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,674

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Flexi

No Conditional Discounts

12% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,713

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Freedom

No Conditional Discounts

10% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,752

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Solar Optimiser

No Conditional Discounts

Other Features:

  • 18c/kWh Feed-in Tariff
9% LessThan Reference Price^^ $1,775

More Details
Origin Logo
Basic Plan Information

Basic

No Conditional Discounts

EqualTo Reference Price^^ $1,946

More Details
View all electricity plans listed on Canstar Blue

Retired Origin Energy Products

In July 2019, Origin totally revamped its product offerings to comply with industry regulations, but it’s worth noting that there may be customers still on some of the plans listed below.

Origin Maximiser

The Origin Maximiser included Origin Energy’s largest discount, between 10% and 30% on electricity usage charges, depending on the state you live in. This discount only applies for the first year after you sign up and customers must pay their bills via direct debit in order to receive it. Customers in NSW, VIC, QLD and ACT receive a small bonus discount when they sign up to the Maximiser online, though this bonus is not always available and varies between states. These discounts exclude the only sign-up bonus.

Origin Saver

The Origin Saver is another variable rate plan that offered competitive value through large discounts. Once again, this discount only applies for the first year after you sign up. In order to receive it, you need to pay your bills on time and in full. Like the Maximiser, the Origin Saver comes with an additional online sign-up discount. These discounts exclude the bonus, which varies between states.

Origin BillSaver

For customers who tend to fall behind on their power bills and aren’t comfortable with direct debiting, there is the Origin BillSaver. This is a variable rate contract with a small guaranteed discount on usage and supply rates for 12 or 24 months.

Low Rate Plan

Customers on this deal receive a lower rate on electricity usage compared to Origin’s other market offers. This low usage rate – along with your supply charge – is ‘locked in’ for the next 12 months which means Origin won’t change what you pay for electricity. This product has no conditional discount, however and customers must agree to receive their bills via email and pay using direct debit.

Origin Predictable Plan

The Origin Predictable Plan allows customers to pay exactly the same price for power every billing period, regardless of how much electricity or gas they actually use. In a nutshell, Origin calculates how much electricity it expects you to use, factoring in usage history, current usage habits and seasonality, to name a few factors. It then charges you the same amount for electricity each month for 12 months. If your usage was higher than expected, this will be reflected in increased bills the following year. Similarly, your bills next year will be smaller if your usage was less than expected. However, there is no lock-in contract and customers are free to exit the plan at any time.

Where does Origin Energy operate?

If you’re wondering what services Origin Energy is offering in your state, look no further than the table below. We summarise what you can expect to find from Origin Energy in NSW, VIC, QLD, SA, ACT, WA and TAS.

State Electricity? Gas?
NSW
VIC
QLD
SA
ACT
WA
TAS

Origin Electricity Rates

As an integrated electricity company and one of the largest retailers of electricity in Australia, Origin Energy uses its market power to offer its customers competitive products, prices and services. To give you an idea of what you can expect to pay, Canstar Blue has calculated estimated annual bills in each state for households signed up to each Origin Energy product.

Origin Energy Electricity Prices Victoria

In the table below, we show Origin Energy prices on the Citipower network in Melbourne. Plans are listed from the lowest priced estimate first. See here for information on the VDO, which in this comparison assumes general energy usage of 4000kWh/year, meaning the VDO is $1,334/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison in your area.

Electricity Provider Electricity Plan Difference from VDO› Conditional Discounts Price Estimate˜
Origin Energy Max Saver – Online Special Equal To VDO 6% less than VDO for direct debit and e-Fulfilment
$1,281Incl. conditional discount
Origin Energy Max Saver Equal To VDO 5% less than VDO for direct debit and e-Fulfilment $1,291Incl. conditional discount
Origin Energy Flexi 3% Less Than VDO No conditional discounts $1,297
Origin Energy Solar Boost Plus 1% Less Than VDO No conditional discounts $1,326
Origin Energy Basic Equal to VDO No conditional discounts $1,337
Energy Fact Sheets

~Price assumes general energy usage of 4000kWh/year. Estimated price includes any conditions discounts that may be available. Pricing based on Citipower network in Melbourne, but prices will differ between distribution areas. Last updated, July 2019.

See how Origin Energy compares to other electricity retailers in the state with our Victoria cost comparison report.

Origin Energy Electricity Prices NSW

In the table below, we show Origin Energy prices on the Ausgrid network in Sydney. Plans are listed from the lowest priced estimate first. See here for information on the AER Reference Price, which in this comparison assumes general energy usage of 3900kWh/year, meaning the Reference Price is $1,467/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison in your area.

Electricity Provider Electricity Plan Difference from Reference Price^ Conditional Discounts Price Estimate*
Origin Energy Max Saver – Online Special 13% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,279
Origin Energy Max Saver 12% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,294
Origin Energy Flexi 10% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,324
Origin Energy Freedom 9% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,338
Origin Energy Solar Boost Plus 1% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,448
Origin Energy Basic Equal To Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,471
Basic Plan Information Documents

*Price assumes general energy usage of 3900Wh/year. Estimated price includes any conditional discounts that may be available. Pricing based on Ausgrid network in Sydney, but prices will differ between distribution areas. Last updated, July 2019.

See how Origin Energy compares to other providers in our NSW cost comparison report.

Origin Energy Electricity Prices QLD

In the table below, we show Origin Energy prices on the Energex network in Brisbane. Plans are listed from the lowest priced estimate first. See here for information on the AER Reference Price, which in this comparison assumes general energy usage of 4600kWh/year, meaning the Reference Price is $1,570/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison in your area.

Electricity Provider Electricity Plan Difference from Reference Price^ Conditional Discounts Price Estimate*
Origin Energy Max Saver – Online Special 11% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,401
Origin Energy Max Saver 10% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,417
Origin Energy Flexi 9% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,433
Origin Energy Freedom 4% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,511
Origin Energy Solar Boost Plus Equal To VDO No conditional discounts $1,563
Origin Energy Basic Equal To VDO No conditional discounts $1,574
Basic Plan Information Documents

*Price assumes general energy usage of 4600Wh/year. Estimated price includes any conditional discounts that may be available. Pricing based on Energex network in Brisbane, but prices will differ between distribution areas. Last updated, July 2019.

See our Queensland electricity cost comparison report for details on how well Origin Energy performs compared to other retailers.

Origin Energy Electricity Prices SA

In the table below, we show Origin Energy prices on the SA Power network in Adelaide. Plans are listed from the lowest priced estimate first. See here for information on the AER Reference Price, which in this comparison assumes general energy usage of 4000kWh/year, meaning the Reference Price is $1,941/year. Use our comparison tool for a specific comparison in your area.

Electricity Provider Electricity Plan Difference from Reference Price^ Conditional Discounts Price Estimate*
Origin Energy Max Saver – Online Special 15% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,654
Origin Energy Max Saver 14% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,674
Origin Energy Flexi 12% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,713
Origin Energy Freedom 10% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,752
Origin Energy Solar Optimiser 9% Less Than Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,775
Origin Energy Basic Equal To Reference Price No conditional discounts $1,946
Basic Plan Information Documents

*Price assumes general energy usage of 4000Wh/year. Estimated price includes any conditional discounts that may be available. Pricing based on SA Power network in Adelaide, but prices will differ between distribution areas. Last updated, July 2019.

See our review of South Australia electricity prices to find out how Origin Energy stacks up.

Solar Power with Origin Energy

Origin offers a full range of solar products. It has partnered up with leading manufacturers like Fronius, Trina and Tesla to provide customers with a wide range of solar panels and inverters, with the option to add a Tesla Powerwall to complete your solar system. See our Origin Energy Solar Guide for more information on what the retailer offers solar customers.

Origin Energy Solar Feed-in Tariffs

Origin Energy offers a standard feed-in tariff between 7c/kWh and 10c/kWh to customers who export their solar power to the energy grid. But as we’ve discussed, customers can get even more for their solar power by signing up to Origin’s Solar Boost or Solar Optimiser deals, which include much higher FiTs.

  • NSW: 8c/kWh
  • VIC: 9.9c/kWh
  • QLD: 7c/kWh
  • SA: 10c/kWh

Origin Energy Natural Gas

Origin Energy is one of Australia’s largest gas companies. It retails natural gas to homes and businesses to most of Australia, excluding the Northern Territory and Tasmania. Origin Energy have three gas products on offer which largely mirror its electricity deals. They are:

  • Origin Max Saver
  • Origin Flexi
  • Origin Basic

Origin Max Saver (natural gas)

The Origin Max Saver plan is much like its electricity counterpart in that it comes with the highest gas saving available with Origin. It has a 12-month benefit period, but to be eligible for the plan you’ll have to set up direct debiting, e-billing and e-communication, MyAccount in the Origin app and monthly billing for smart meters. Below are the discounts on offer with this plan, which apply to both usage and supply charges.

State NSW VIC QLD SA ACT
Discount 11% 13% 3% 10% 14%

Source: Origin Energy

Origin Flexi (natural gas)

The Origin Flexi gas plan provides a moderate-sized discount to customers when they pay their bills on time. There are no exit fees or lock in contracts and customers have some flexibility over how they receive and pay their bills. Like most Origin products, the Origin Flexi is for a one-year benefit period. Here are the discounts which apply to both usage and supply charges.

State NSW VIC QLD SA ACT
Discount 7% 11% 2% 9% 10%

Source: Origin Energy

Origin Basic (natural gas)

Origin Basic (natural gas) is Origin’s no-discount plan. It comes with no exit fees or lock in contract.

Other Origin services

Origin Energy has its hand in almost everything energy related, so it’s not surprising that the company has broadened its services to include LPG, air conditioning and hot water services.

Heating & Cooling

Origin retails three split system reverse cycle air conditioners from Carrier, Toshiba and Mitsubishi. Prices start at around $2,000 for the 2.5kW(C)/2.7kW(H) Carrier model, with the option to repay in monthly instalments over 12 months with no deposit.

LPG

Origin has a comprehensive range of LPG services available across most of Australia. Its services include gas fitting, delivery, exchange and refills. Customers can order at a whim, or organise for Origin to periodically deliver gas so you never run out. Origin promises that if customers can find lower comparable LPG price, it will beat it by 5% for 12 months.

Hot water services

Origin installs and repairs hot water systems across NSW, Victoria, SA and the Brisbane Metro area. In addition, Origin hot water customers receive access to a 24/7 help hotline. Origin also offers flexible payment arrangements and same-day system replacements for orders made before 10am.

My Account

‘My Account’ lets Origin Energy customers manage all their energy accounts and queries in the one spot. Among many of its features, customers can:

  • View and pay bills
  • Change payment options
  • Renew or change plan
  • Change property
  • Update contact details
  • Request usage data
  • Receive energy efficiency tips

Is Origin Energy right for me?

Origin Energy is a well-rounded retailer, offering solid value across most of its energy plans. While our calculations suggest it isn’t always the cheapest electricity retailer, the level of service it provides is almost unparalleled. It is one of few energy retailers to offer over the phone customer support on weekends, for example.

Origin’s cheapest plans comes with modest to generous savings off the Reference Price and VDO. But if you want to remain with Origin long-term, you may need to make the occasional phone call to ensure you’re still getting its cheapest offer. At the end of the day, whether Origin is right for you is a matter of preference. If you’re after a reputable retailer with strong service, Origin is worth checking out. If you just want the best price, then you will need to compare and shop around.

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How do customers rate Origin Energy?

In 2019, electricity customers in New South Wales gave Origin Energy 3 out of 5 stars for overall satisfaction in our customer ratings report.

Origin Electricity NSW

Canstar Blue
Rating:
Award: Overall Satisfaction

Origin Energy Facts

Origin Energy is Australia’s biggest energy retailer in terms of its market share, supplying power to millions of households around the country. Here are a few things to know about Origin:

About Origin Energy

Origin Energy is based out of Sydney, with another major office in Melbourne. It services households in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Queensland, the Australian Capital Territory and Western Australia. It currently has around 4.2 million electricity and gas customers nationally. Origin Energy was founded in 2000 after a dememerger with Australian conglomerate, Boral Limited, becoming an ASX listed company owned by shareholders over the globe.

Origin Power Generation

Origin’s energy generation portfolio is one of the biggest in Australia, according to the Australian Energy Regulator, with somewhere around 6,010MW capacity, making up about 13% of the National Electricity Market’s total energy mix. Listed below are the types of electricity and gas generation stations that Origin has a stake in:

  • Coal fired stations
  • Gas fired stations
  • Wind farms
  • Geothermal power stations
  • Large-scale solar farms

Origin Energy Services

More than just an electricity retailer, Origin sells a range of products to Aussie households:

  • Electricity
  • Natural gas
  • LPG
  • Hot water systems
  • Heating and cooling systems
  • Solar Panels
  • Broadband
  • GreenPower

This information has been sourced from the Origin Energy and AER websites.

More Origin Energy Services

Service Does Origin Energy offer it?
Online chat functionality
24 hour call centre
Energy saving tips on website
Green energy options
Notifications when bill is available
Multiple billing options

Origin Energy: Recent Key Dates

2006 | Origin acquired Sun Retail, giving it an additional 840,000 electricity accounts.

2010 | Origin purchased the retail divisions of Country Energy and Integral Energy.

2013 | Origin acquired Eraring Energy, the company behind Australia’s largest power station.

2017 | Origin announced it would slash its carbon emissions in half by 2032 by closing the Eraring coal-fired power station.

2018 | Origin set up a virtual power plant for solar households in Victoria.

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