The voice of the energy industry

Energy UK looks to ease switching process for smart meter prepayment customers

Energy UK has set out principles to provide improved safeguards for smart meter prepayment customers switching supplier. 
With most UK - small, medium and large energy suppliers having signed up to the principles, their customers will all benefit from the improved processes.  Suppliers that have signed the principles will agree to implement them as they roll out smart prepayment. This will be almost immediately for some and within the next 18 months for others, as the Data Communications Company (DCC) becomes fully operational. 
The smart prepayment switching principles will ensure suppliers provide the information and support needed by customers who have a smart meter in prepayment mode before, during and after switching provider.
Prepayment is a useful tool for managing energy costs and when switching supplier it’s important to ensure such customers understand the process and are in control of it. 
Smart meters are an important step in upgrading our energy system and will give customers more control over their energy usage, in near real time, allowing them to save energy and keep their costs down.
Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK, said:
“The launch of the smart prepayment switching principles demonstrates the industry’s ongoing commitment to ensuring the switching process works well for customers and providing support for those who need it.
“Smart meters bring great benefits to consumers and as the rollout continues, more and more prepayment customers will be able to switch with confidence as a result of these principles.”
Notes to editors:
The initial signatories to the smart prepayment switching principles are: British Gas, Utilita, Boost, Npower, Scottish Power, SSE, EDF Energy, Utility Warehouse, Green Star Energy, Extra Energy, Bristol Energy, Toto Energy
In 2011, Energy UK and Citizen’s Advice (then Consumer Focus) developed five key prepayment principles to raise standards of service for customers paying for their energy using a prepayment meter. The principles were expanded in April 2016 to 10 principles and currently have 13 signatories. 
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