Cheaper ways to pay your energy bill

When you switch energy supplier the way you pay them can make a difference to your energy costs.  Paying by monthly direct debit is often the preferred way to pay for the gas and electricity that you use in your home.
Some energy suppliers insist you pay this way and by saying you want to pay a different way in our energy cost calculator may limit the choice of suppliers and therefore reduce the potential savings you make.

Monthly direct debit

Monthly direct debit is often the cheapest way to pay your energy bill.  You will find that many energy companies will off you a discount for paying by direct debit and will only offer their best prices to customers who pay this way. 
Monthly direct debit is the easiest way for your energy supplier to collect payment as its pretty much all automatic and therefore they don’t need as many staff to process payment

Paperless or online billing

Many suppliers will offer you an incentive to sign up to online billing or paperless billing.  This will save them the cost of posting out your bill.  With an online only account you will submit your meter readings via their website.  By doing this regularly will mean that you only pay for the energy you have used rather than via an estimated bill.
Paperless billing accounts are only available to credit meter customers, not prepay meter customers.

Cheque or cash

Paying your energy bill on demand with a cheque or cash in the local office used to be the most common way to pay your bill.  Some customers still prefer to pay this way as it gives you total control.  However, its likely that you will miss out on discounts or pay more for your energy if you do this.  Its pretty labour intensive for a supplier to administer your account this way so they will make you pay for that.

If you currently pay this way and are looking to switch then try limiting the search to that payment method and then seeing the difference if you change to a monthly direct debit.  At least then you can work out if you are happy to pay the extra to be able to pay your energy bill by cash or cheque.