Energy Plans for Seniors & Pensioners

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Once the kids have moved out and life has settled down, you might find your home doesn’t use as much electricity as it used to. Lower usage of course means smaller bills, but what if we told you there’s a way to save even more on your power bills? If you’ve been stuck with the same electricity provider – like AGL or Origin – for several years without comparing other offers, chances are you’re paying too much for energy. In this article, Canstar Blue compares cheap electricity deals for seniors and pensioners, explains what to look for in a power plan, and what rebates and concessions may be available to help you lower your bills even further.

Good Energy Plans for Seniors & Pensioners

If you’re a senior or pensioner, you’re probably not using as much electricity as the younger crowd. If that’s the case, it will likely be a smart move to look for an electricity deal that has low supply charges. These are the daily charges you need to pay for each day that you’re connected to the energy network.

  • Electricity plans are made up of two main charges – usage and supply. Energy providers typically compensate for low supply rates with higher usage rates, and vice versa. For small households, supply charges will typically make up a higher proportion of your overall energy costs. For large households, usage charges generally make up a higher proportion of overall costs. Therefore it pays to get the cheapest rates on the charges that have the biggest impact on your hip pocket.

This being the case, it may also be a smart move to find a plan with a whole bill discount, as opposed to a plan with a discount off usage charges only. You may also find it convenient if your electricity plan has a benefit period of at least two years, so you won’t lose the discount for 24 months. However, if you’re happy regularly comparing plans, a contract with a 12 month benefit period could prove better value in the short term. Some retailers even offer ongoing discounts, but don’t fall into the set and forget trap of assuming that you’re always going to be getting a great deal.

  • It’s important to know that energy discounts are usually conditional. Pay on time discounts and direct debit payment discounts are the most common types, though energy retailers also commonly offer an additional discount for receiving bills via email instead of post. Consider your personal circumstances and preferences before jumping into a plan with a conditional discount. Failing to meet the conditions could mean you’re left paying considerably more.

Ultimately the key to finding the right electricity plan for your needs is having a good understanding of your energy usage habits. Be sure to check your recent energy bills to find out how much power you’re using and how this compares to other households. Read on for examples of cheap energy deals in each state we have compared, or jump straight into our comparison tool to find plans in your area.

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Cheap Energy Plans for Seniors & Pensioners

A cheap electricity plan for seniors and pensioners will likely have low usage charges, assuming that the household will generally not consume as much power as households with several occupants or kids, for example. With this in mind, we have trawled our energy database to find the cheapest electricity plans based on households with two occupants. We show examples for seniors and pensioners in NSW, VIC, QLD and SA, but you should treat these as examples only. Use our comparison tool above for a specific comparison in your area.

Cheap Energy Deals for Seniors & Pensioners in NSW

Electricity Provider^ Electricity Plan Discount Annual Cost* Important
ReAmped Energy ReAmped Handshake 0% $1,357.11 Basic Plan Information
Origin Energy Low Rate Plan 0% $1,385.62 Basic Plan Information
EnergyAustralia No Frills 0% $1,388.72 Basic Plan Information
Simply Energy Simply NRMA 26% $1,389.18 Basic Plan Information
Alinta Energy Fair Deal 30 30% $1,402.64 Basic Plan Information

*Costs based on annual usage statistics from AER for a two person household on the Ausgrid network in Sydney, May 2019. Maximum one product listed per retailer.

^By clicking on a brand name, you may leave Canstar Blue and be taken to a referral partner to compare. You agree that Canstar Blue’s terms and conditions apply to this referral. If you click on a brand that is not a referral partner, you will be taken to a brand page on Canstar Blue.

Our NSW price calculations shows that ReAmped Energy, Origin Energy, EnergyAustralia, Simply Energy and Alinta Energy make up the top five cheapest electricity deals based on this comparison, thanks largely to just competitive rates rather than big headline discounts. Big power discounts don’t always bring the big savings they suggest, as this comparison shows. It’s also interesting to see some of the biggest energy retailers at the top of the standings given they often have a reputation as the bad guys.

It’s important to point out that energy prices will vary between different parts of NSW, depending on which distribution network you happen to live on. Be sure to use our comparison tool for a specific range of offers in your area.

Cheap Energy Deals for Seniors & Pensioners in VIC

Electricity Provider^ Electricity Plan Discount Annual Cost* Benefit Period
Simply Energy Simply RACV Plus 45% $960.47 2 years
Alinta Energy Fair Deal 43 43% $1,018.33 1 year
GloBird Energy GloSave 33% $1,039.10 Ongoing
Tango Energy Home Select 0% $1,041.90 1 year
Powerdirect Residential 41 41% $1,045.79 2 years

*Costs based on annual usage statistics from AER for a two person household on the Citipower network in Melbourne, May 2019. Maximum one product listed per retailer.

^By clicking on a brand name, you may leave Canstar Blue and be taken to a referral partner to compare. You agree that Canstar Blue’s terms and conditions apply to this referral. If you click on a brand that is not a referral partner, you will be taken to a brand page on Canstar Blue.

The Tango Energy plan is currently one of the cheapest deals for seniors and pensioners in Victoria, based on this specific comparison. This is particularly interesting given its Home Select plan comes out as one of the cheapest deals despite having no conditional discount. This is an important message because sometimes the big discount energy offers do not work as cheap as they might suggest. Simply Energy and Alinta Energy lead the way with big discounts, with GloBird Energy and Powerdirect also reasonably competitive.

This comparison is based on a specific postcode in Melbourne. As prices vary between different parts of Victoria, be sure to use our comparison tool for quotes in your area.

Cheap Energy Deals for Seniors & Pensioners in QLD

Electricity Provider^ Electricity Plan Discount Annual Cost* Important
ReAmped Energy Residential Anytime 0% $1,195.28 Basic Plan Information
Powershop Mega Pack 15% $1,205.59 Basic Plan Information
Alinta Energy Home Saver Plus 28% $1,215.37 Basic Plan Information
Click Energy Click Garnet 27% $1,218.10 Basic Plan Information
Future X Power Flexi Saver 29% $1,220.92 Basic Plan Information

*Costs based on annual usage statistics from AER for a two person household on the Energex network in Brisbane, May 2019. Maximum one product listed per retailer.

^By clicking on a brand name, you may leave Canstar Blue and be taken to a referral partner to compare. You agree that Canstar Blue’s terms and conditions apply to this referral. If you click on a brand that is not a referral partner, you will be taken to a brand page on Canstar Blue.

Alinta Energy is currently making a big impact in the South East Queensland electricity market and comes out as one of the cheapest providers in this comparison. However, there are various other competitive offers from newcomer ReAmped Energy, Powershop, Click Energy and Future X Power to consider.

This list is based on a specific postcode in the Brisbane area, so be sure to use our comparison tool for deals in your area.

Cheap Energy Deals for Seniors & Pensioners in SA

Electricity Provider^ Electricity Plan Discount Annual Cost* Important
Simply Energy Simply RAA Extra 25% $1,752.01 Basic Plan Information
Origin Energy Low Rate Plan 0% $1,758.71 Basic Plan Information
Energy Locals Simple Saver 0% $1,817.82 Basic Plan Information
Alinta Energy Fair Deal 28 28% $1,834.65 Basic Plan Information
Powershop Mega Pack 15% $1,835.06 Basic Plan Information

*Costs based on annual usage statistics from AER for a two person household on the SA Power network in Adelaide, May 2019. Maximum one product listed per retailer.

^By clicking on a brand name, you may leave Canstar Blue and be taken to a referral partner to compare. You agree that Canstar Blue’s terms and conditions apply to this referral. If you click on a brand that is not a referral partner, you will be taken to a brand page on Canstar Blue.

Some of the lesser-known electricity retailers appear in our latest results for South Australia, with Simply Energy currently coming in the cheapest based on our specific comparison. Origin Energy follows next, ahead of Energy Locals, Alinta Energy and Powershop in the top five. But really, there is little in it. Be sure to use our comparison tool for a specific comparison in your area.

Energy Concessions for Seniors

Each state government offers a discount to Pensioner Concession Card or Seniors Card holders. The title, value and eligibility requirements of these concessions vary from state to state, so be sure to check your state government’s website (via the links in the table below) to confirm what discounts may be available.

State Seniors Concession
NSW $285
VIC 17.5% of total annual bill
QLD $340.85
SA $223.01

Source: State government websites, July 2018

Additional rebates may also be available to electricity account holders with low incomes and health conditions. You can see a full list of electricity and gas rebates here.

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Specific Energy Plans for Seniors

Energy Plans for Seniors

While the electricity plans featured above will likely be some of the cheapest deals on the market for seniors and pensioners given that they are based on low-usage households, they are not specific plans for older Australians, in that any household can sign up to them. However, it’s worth checking with your energy retailer – and any prospective ones – if they offer specific products for seniors. Below is a guide to what Australia’s big three power companies have to offer seniors and pensioners.

AGL Seniors Plans

AGL is the only electricity provider in Australia with specific products for seniors and pensioners. In this case, it applies an additional discount to its standard plans, meaning seniors will likely end up paying less than most other customers. Seniors in NSW, QLD and VIC may be eligible for the AGL Savers Seniors plan, but at the moment it seems the offer doesn’t apply elsewhere.

  • Seniors Card holders in New South Wales can sign up to the AGL Seniors Plan and receive a 26% discount on electricity usage charges and a 20% discount on natural gas usage charges when bills are paid on time.
  • Victorian seniors can receive a discount of 41% off electricity usage charges and 28% off natural gas usage when bills are paid on time.
  • Queensland senior customers receive a 27% pay on time discount on electricity usage charges and up to 22% off natural gas usage (if also signing up for electricity).

While these discounts are larger than what’s normal available with the AGL Savers plan, customers will still need to pay their bills on time to receive the money off. These discounts apply for 12 months, after which you will need to contact AGL to get a new discount, or switch plans.

The Savers Seniors Plan applies the same usage and supply rates as the AGL Savers plan, though keep in mind that the rates are variable and may change at any time, provided AGL gives notice. This deal won’t lock you in with exit fees, however, so you are free to leave at any time. When you sign up online, you may also receive $50 credit toward your first bill.

Key takeouts:

  • Electricity discount: 26% (NSW) | 41% (VIC) | 27% (QLD)
  • Gas discount: 20% (NSW) | 28% (VIC) | 22% (QLD)
  • Variable rates that could change
  • $50 online sign up credit

These discounts may be subject to change.

AGL also provides a seniors offer for natural gas customers in WA, taking the total available to 41% off usage charges.

Origin Seniors Plans

The Origin Maximiser and Low Rate Plan products tend to be Origin’s cheapest electricity deals for all residential customers. While they are not exclusive to seniors, the value is often on par with the AGL Seniors Plan, but be sure to use our comparison tool for the latest prices. Origin also encourages its senior customers to make the most of government rebates and concessions. If you hold a Pensioner Concession Card or State Seniors Card, contact Origin over the phone or online to have your annual seniors concession applied to your bill. Depending on your state, you may also need to fill out a concession application form.

EnergyAustralia Seniors Plans

The EnergyAustralia Secure Saver and No Frills plans can help senior customers save with great discounts and/or fixed rates that won’t increase for one or two years. These plans and all other EnergyAustralia deals are also compatible with state government senior concessions and rebates. If you currently hold a Pensioner Concession Card or Seniors Card, visit the EnergyAustralia website to have your rebate applied. To do this, you will need to make a ‘My Account’ and update your details. Once you’re done, your electricity concession should take effect immediately.

How to find the best deal on energy

Older customers are often the most loyal, but when it comes to energy supply, loyalty usually doesn’t pay. If you’ve been with the same electricity company for several years, then you are likely paying too much. The best energy deals are typically reserved for new customers, so it’s wise to regularly compare offers and see where you could save. At the very least, get in touch with your existing retailer and ask for a better deal. Also, don’t forget about your concessions. Be sure to check your power bills to make sure you’re receiving all the rebates and discounts you’re entitled to.

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