If you’re one of the lucky ones who own an electric car, there’s a good probability you’ve spent more time researching the price and range of different models than how much electricity your charge would use up. And whilst you’re likely to save some dosh by switching from petrol to power socket, we’re here to help you get the best bang for your buck from your power provider by shining some light onto dedicated electric vehicle (EV) tariffs.
How much will it cost to charge my electric car?
We won’t spend much time on this since we’ve already done the math, but electric cars on average will cost significantly less than purchasing petrol. Rather than being charged per litre, you’ll be paying per kilowatt hour (kWh) for however much electricity you use. In our previous estimates, we’ve found that in some cases, you might only pay a quarter to a third of what you were on petrol to a full charge on your EV. On a dedicated electric car plan, this could work out to be even less.
Does every electricity provider offer a plan for electric car owners?
Unfortunately, no. Currently, Australians have just two plans to pick from that provide an added benefit for EV drivers. Keep in mind to check the rates attached to these plans before you sign up.
Powershop Super Off-peak Tariff
In Victoria, NSW and Queensland, Powershop is offering a ‘super off-peak tariff’ for those who own an electric vehicle. In order to be eligible, customers must own a smart meter and move to a time of use tariff, meaning usage charges vary depending on the time of day power is used.
With the ‘super off peak’ tariff, customers will pay a significantly reduced usage rate between the hours of 12am and 4am on weekdays – ideal for those who charge their electric vehicles overnight.
Even when signing up to this tariff, customers can still take advantage of Powershop’s discounted packs, such as the Mega Pack and Power Saver.
AGL Electric Vehicle Plan
The AGL Electric Vehicle plan again doesn’t rely on a dedicated circuit, rather working just like any other plan – with the added benefit of bill credits. On this plan, you’ll receive up to $480 in bonus credits, applied in $60 installments every three months for two years. This is a fixed rate plan with no lock-in contract and monthly e-billing.
Much like AGL’s other plans, this deal comes with flybuys points on sign up and the option to carbon offset household emissions with the Future Forests program. This plan is available in NSW, QLD, SA and VIC.
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Expired dedicated electric vehicle plans
Here are a few EV specific plans that have come and gone over the years. As of September 2019, AGL has another plan on offer, listed above, but Click Energy doesn’t appear to.
AGL $1 a day Electric Car Plan
November 2016 saw AGL introduce a dedicated plan for electric car owners, which would allow customers to charge their electric vehicle for $1 a day. On this plan, customers were required to either have a dedicated circuit already installed at their property, or elect to have an AGL charging station installed for $799 plus installation costs. This was a 12-month plan, which stopped being offered by AGL in 2018.
Click Energy Click EV Plan
In August 2016, Click Energy launched a dedicated electric vehicle plan which, according to the retailer, was the first to do so within Australia. This plan didn’t require a dedicated circuit, which meant that the entire house could use the slightly lower rates, not just the car. As an added incentive Click Energy launched a ‘charge calculator’ along with this plan, which allowed customers to check the cost of charging their car on this plan. This plan was only available in Victoria and New South Wales.
Should I switch to an electric car plan?
Switching to a dedicated plan for electric cars definitely comes with its benefits. From cheaper tariffs at certain times, to inflated bill credits, it all seems too good to be true. With Powershop, you’ll have to stay on top of what time you charge your car to get maximum benefit, whilst with AGL you’ll probably be best of delving a bit deeper into the true value of the bill credits when weighed up against usage and supply rates.
Keep in mind that, if you have an electric vehicle, you don’t necessarily need to sign up to an EV-specific power plan. Talk to your retailer about what the best option might be for your home because finding the best deal could come down to your individual circumstances. For example, you might not want to sign up to a time of use tariff just for the benefit of charging your car overnight if you’re going to end up paying higher prices than you need to for your general energy usage during the day.
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