We still don’t understand ‘simplified’ energy tariffs

Energy tariffs are deeply boring by their very nature. Say the words ‘unit prices’ and the average punter will fall asleep into their cornflakes like a narcoleptic on Nytol. What’s more, despite the Government's proposal to simplify tariffs, consumers are still finding them too complicated.


When asked by Which! to identify the best deal in a range of tariffs using the proposed Ofgem Tariff Comparison Rate, most people’s mouths flapped open and shut like dying fish and they slumped to the ground clutching their heads saying ‘Unnnnggh’.

Only three in ten people were able to identify the cheapest deal using the Tariff Comparison rate. Which! is calling for a single unit price for electricity and gas, rather than the proposed system, which requires several hours of painstaking comparison and figures scrawled on bits of paper. When they arranged the same tariffs in using a single unit system, eight out of ten people were quickly able to make the cheapest choice.

‘You shouldn’t need a maths degree to work out the best energy deal,’ huffed Richard Lloyd of Which! ‘The complexity of energy pricing makes it virtually impossible for most people to make sense of the market.’

Isn’t that what energy companies are secretly hoping for?


  • shiftynifty
    Like Payday lenders...rely on people`s inertia...or stupidity
  • chewbacca
    If people are too fucking stupid to understand what is, let's face it, something pretty fucking simple, then fuck them. They can subsidise the rest of us. The fucking morons.
  • Inspector G.
    What's to understand? You input your previous usage into Uswitch then see which one is the top of the list. If the British public can't handle that then I'm frightened for our future. Or is this what Which? thinks of the British public, perhaps?
  • Howard a.
    @ Inspector Gadget Agreed, but what if comparison sites ONLY rank at the kW/BTU prices and don't factor in standing charges? Yes, they still exist. The cheapest rate suddenly isn't cheap at all. Or if you're comparing prices in Autumn? You input your Summer months usage which includes next-to-no gas consumption. You choose a cheap new supplier - hurrah! - and then you're hit with Winter. Frankly, they all need their heads knocking together.

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