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Best energy supplier 2024: How to get the best energy deal

The energy market has changed drastically in the past year. What does this mean for your energy bills and can you still switch tariff?

For energy customers looking for the best deal over the past couple of years, choice has been thin on the ground. In 2021, wholesale prices began to rise, leading to many energy suppliers going bust, and the rest stopped offering fixed and discounted deals.

As such, the majority of people found themselves stuck on their energy suppliers’ default standard variable tariffs once their existing deals came to an end. According to energy regulator Ofgem, by September 2023 there were around 29 million customers on standard variable tariffs, compared to just 15 million in August 2021.

While the Ofgem price cap limits the amount that suppliers in Great Britain can charge for their standard variable tariffs, since it was set to rise to astronomical levels from October 2022, the government stepped in with its energy price guarantee. This limited the price to an average £2,500 for a typical household paying for gas and electricity by direct debit.

Thankfully, energy prices came down in 2023, with the price cap falling twice to £1,834, which encouraged suppliers to start offering fixed and discounted deals again. However, due to world events pushing up wholesale prices again, the cap is set to go up by 5% in January 2024 to £1,928. This remains much lower than the level of the energy price guarantee, however.

There are deals you can switch to, then, but deciding whether or not you should isn’t straightforward. Plus, all the turbulence in the market has impacted customer service levels too.

To help you compare the performance of your current suppliers to the competition, we look at what’s on offer to help you decide what’s right for you. In addition, our late 2023 survey, carried out in partnership with YouGov, reveals the responses of 2,006 energy customers rating their suppliers for customer service, value for money and more. The full results from that survey can be found in each individual energy supplier review (the best of which are listed below) and in our Expert Reviews Energy Awards 2024 article.

Best energy supplier: At a glance

Best overall serviceOctopus EnergyCheck price at Octopus Energy
Best at resolving complaints quicklyOvo EnergyCheck price at Ovo Energy
Clear bills and renewable tariffs E.ON NextCheck price at E.ON Next

How to choose the best energy supplier for you

Should you switch to a fixed deal?

Many of the best fixed and discounted deals available are for existing customers only, with very few deals likely to save you money.

Fixed deals are on offer for 12, 14 and 18 months, where the price per unit remains the same for the duration of your contract. However, whether or not it’s worth moving from a price-capped standard variable tariff will depend on what happens to the price cap. Currently, it’s predicted to go down in the second and third quarters of 2024.

It could be worth paying a bit more than the price cap now to pay less from January, for example, but you could find yourself paying more than you would on a price-capped tariff further down the line. For those who value price certainty, a fixed deal might be best though.

Note that most fixed deals will incur fees if you exit before the end of the contract, which you’ll need to factor in if you want to switch to a cheaper deal later on.

When you’re comparing deals, bear in mind that the cost of variable deals can go up or down, making it difficult to predict how much they’re likely to cost over a year. And while the headline price cap is what an average household with “typical” consumption would pay, it’s actually the standing charges and unit prices that are capped, and these vary by region.

Below, we list the deals offered by our best energy suppliers for both new and existing customers, and how they compare to the relevant price cap now and from January. You may also want to check out your current provider’s deals for existing customers only, before considering options elsewhere.

Choosing a renewable tariff

If you’re keen to do your bit for the planet, then you could consider a tariff that offers electricity from renewable sources, such as the wind or sun, or “green” or carbon-offset gas. Most suppliers now offer 100% renewable electricity tariffs – and a few, such as Octopus Energy, only supply renewable electricity.

Bear in mind that all electricity generated goes into the National Grid, no matter how it’s generated. Energy providers that say they supply renewable energy do so in a number of ways. Some generate their own renewable electricity, others invest in generating it or buy it from generators. Some simply buy certificates to show that the same amount has been generated that’s used by their customers.

Note that renewable tariffs can be some of the cheapest around.

READ NEXT: Best EV tariff

The best energy suppliers you can switch to in 2024

1. Octopus Energy: The ultimate for customer service, value and more

Octopus logo on white background
Octopus was launched in 2015 and is now one of Britain’s largest energy suppliers with 6.6 million customers. All of its electricity is 100% renewable and the supplier invests in renewable generation as well; it offers carbon-offset gas on some of its tariffs. Clearly, the supplier is a winner as far as its customers are concerned.

Some 79% said they would recommend Octopus to a friend, seeing the supplier win the title of Best Energy Supplier overall, along with every other crown in our 2024 Energy Awards.

At 72%, it polled best for customer service, while 64% of customers were satisfied with its value for money. A total of 84% said their bills were easy to understand.

Octopus also wins the Fastest Call Centre Response award, with 42% of respondents saying their calls were answered in five minutes or less. The supplier also responded to the highest proportion (44%) of online and email communications within a day or less.

To be the overall winner, a supplier must have received fewer complaints per 100,000 customer accounts than the industry average according to the latest Ofgem data, and have resolved at least 50% of them by the end of the next working day and at least 80% within eight weeks. Octopus consistently achieves this, having received the lowest number of complaints in our survey.

The supplier has just one tariff available to new customers right now, which is variable and will be £45 cheaper than the price cap from January for a household in London with medium energy use.

Octopus has a number of deals for existing customers, which are worth a look if you’re already a customer.

Read our full Octopus Energy review

Flexible Octopus
Annual cost£1,883*
Renewable tariff?Yes – 100% renewable electricity
Exit feesNone
Compared to Oct-Dec 2023 price cap£83 more*
Compared to Jan-Mar 2024 price cap£17 less

NB: Estimated annual gas and electricity cost for a medium user (2,700 kWh of electricity per year and 11,500 kWh of gas) in the Eastern England region paying by monthly direct debit. Regional price caps used for comparison are £1,800 then £1,900 from January 2024. Correct as of 8 December 2023. *Based on prices from 1 January 2024. They’re lower until then.

View tariffs at Octopus

2. Ovo Energy: One of the best in some categories and the quickest at complaint resolution

Ovo Energy on white background
Ovo Energy is currently Great Britain’s second-largest energy supplier with around five million customers.

According to Ovo’s latest fuel-mix figures, 45% of its electricity comes from renewable sources, and customers can upgrade their tariff to get 100% renewable electricity if it doesn’t include this already.

Ovo wins a highly commended award for value for money in our 2024 Energy Awards, though it remains way behind Octopus Energy overall, with only 39% of respondents – as opposed to Octopus’s 79% – saying they would recommend the supplier to a friend.

For value it trailed, too, with 32% of respondents satisfied compared to Octopus’s 64%. Just over a third (38%) of Ovo customers said they were very or fairly satisfied with its customer service.

Nevertheless, a respectable 73% of customers found Ovo’s bills very or fairly easy to understand. It didn’t score so highly for bill accuracy, though.

It was also among the slowest to respond to customers, answering 20% of calls in five minutes or less, compared to Octopus’s 42%, and to 25% of online/email communications in one day or less.

For complaints, Ovo was rated second-highest at 2,104 per 100,000 customers according to Ofgem data. It was the best at resolving them, though: some 80% were dealt with by the end of the next working day, while 97% were resolved within eight weeks.

Ovo is offering a range of fixed deals to new and existing customers, plus one variable tariff – and if you pay an extra £10/mth then you can upgrade to 100% renewable electricity. The supplier also has a fixed deal for existing customers that’s worth a look.

Read our full Ovo Energy review

1 Year Fixed2 Year Fixed1 Year Fixed + Boiler CoverSimpler Energy1 Year Fixed + Greener Energy
Annual cost£1,860£1,860£1,884£1,908*£1,944
Renewable tariff?NoNoNoNoYes – 100% renewable electricity, 10% green gas, 90% carbon-offset gas
Exit fees£75 per fuel£95 per fuel£75 per fuelNone£75 per fuel
Compared to Oct-Dec 2023 price cap£60 more£60 more£84 more£108* more£144 more
Compared to Jan-Mar 2024 price cap£40 less£40 less£16 less£8 more£44 more

NB: Estimated annual gas and electricity cost for a medium user (2,700 kWh of electricity per year and 11,500 kWh of gas) in the Eastern England region paying by monthly direct debit. Regional price caps used for comparison are £1,800 then £1,900 from January 2024. Correct as of 8 December 2023. *Based on prices from 1 January 2024. They’re lower until then.

View tariffs at Ovo

3. E.ON Next: Green electricity with clear bills and reasonable response times

E.ON Next on white background
In 2020, E.ON launched E.ON Next to offer 100% renewable electricity to homes and small businesses.

Its customers aren’t overly impressed, however. Despite 42% saying they would recommend the provider to a friend in our survey (just behind Scottish Power on 43%, but way off Octopus Energy on 79%), only 40% said they were very or fairly satisfied with its customer service.

Only 28% said they were satisfied with E.ON Next for value for money, which put it second from bottom, behind Shell Energy with 27%.

The supplier did well for the clarity of its bills, however, with 77% saying bills were very or fairly easy to understand. But scored poorly for accuracy: just 41% said they were always accurate compared to 52% for Octopus. Ovo Energy scored the lowest here at 36%.

Its call centre performance was reasonable, with 26% stating a call response time of five minutes or less, but just 5% of calls were answered in less than one minute. The supplier was better at responding to online or email queries, replying to a fifth (21%) in just four hours or less.

For complaints, E.ON Next took fifth place behind Octopus, Shell Energy, Scottish Power and British Gas, with 1,712 per 100,000 customers – more than the industry average of 1,578. It resolved 71% by the end of the next working day, however, and 92% within eight weeks.

E.ON Next offers three fixed deals for new and existing customers, plus two variable tariffs. One of its variable deals to existing customers offers a fixed discount of £25 off the price cap per fuel for a year (a total of £50 for dual-fuel customers). As you’re guaranteed to save compared to staying on a standard variable tariff at the level of the price cap, it’s a good bet for existing customers.

The NextPledge Tracker shown below is a similar deal now being offered to new customers too.

Read our full E.ON Next review

NextFlexNextFixed 12m v6NextPledge Tracker 12m v3NextFixed 18m v1NextFixed 24m v5
Annual cost£1,898*£1,8131,848*£1,848£1,939
Renewable tariff?NoYes – 100% renewable electricityYes – 100% renewable electricityYes – 100% renewable electricityYes – 100% renewable electricity
Exit feesNone£75 per fuel£25 per fuel£100 per fuel£150 per fuel
Compared to Oct-Dec 2023 price cap£98 more*£13 more£48 more*£48 more£139 more
Compared to Jan-Mar 2024 price cap£2 less£87 less£52 less£52 less£39 more

NB: Estimated annual gas and electricity cost for a medium user (2,700 kWh of electricity per year and 11,500 kWh of gas) in the Eastern England region paying by monthly direct debit. Regional price caps used for comparison are £1,800 then £1,900 from January 2024. Correct as of 8 December 2023. *Based on prices from 1 January 2024. They’re lower until then.

View tariffs at E.ON Next

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