Charging at home is the cheapest and most convenient way to add miles to your electric car. EV tariffs come in a few forms, but basically mean you can plug in and charge conveniently at very cheap rates. Not only do you pay less to charge, but you’re also avoiding the energy ‘rush hour,’ which means you’ll be using lovely green electrons from more renewable sources.
We’ve brought together all the EV tariffs from the likes of EDF, British Gas, and Scottish Power, as well as from smart challengers, like Ovo and Octopus Energy.
We’ve listed these EV electricity tariffs starting with the cheapest off-peak rate. But check the day-time rates and the daily standing charge too, as these can be higher than on a normal tariff. To find the tariff with the best savings for your electric car charging (and the way you use energy at home) try our free EV tariff comparison.
UPDATE 5th October 2021 – Most utilities are not currently offering EV tariffs, or any fixed tariffs, until the price situation becomes clearer. EDF and Octopus continue to offer EV tariffs to new customers, but the prices have been updated. We’ve kept the list below up-to-date, but things do change quickly, so it is worth checking the supplier websites or calling if you are already a customer.
Would you be better off staying on a SVT?
If you are on a cheap fixed tariff that is coming to an end, it may work out better to do nothing for the time being. Rolling onto you supplier’s Standard Variable Tariff (SVT) will bring you under the protection of the default price cap. This sets a maximum price that your supplier can charge until March 2022.
The exact price varies by region, but in South Wales the maximum standing charge is around 24p/day and the cost of each unit you consume is limited at 22.96p/kWh. These are much lower than some of the latest EV tariffs below. If you have low mileage and would find it hard to shift much of your home use to the off-peak windows, it may be better to do nothing until next spring.
If you haven’t already got a smart meter, you could book an installation with your supplier in the meantime, so that you are ready for an EV tariff as soon as the market opens up.
What’s the best EV tariff for me?
147 hours off-peak/week
49 hours off-peak/week
28 hours off-peak/week
Note: these prices have come either directly from the energy supplier’s website, or have been obtained by contacting the energy supplier directly. These prices are correct for homes in South Wales. Your prices and quotes may differ slightly, but in most areas energy prices will be lower.
For this list, we’ve assumed monthly direct debit payments and paperless bills. If you choose to pay quarterly or annually, or you have paper bills, some of these prices may change.
All EV energy tariffs in the UK guarantee 100% renewable energy, although the way in which they back this promise does vary. Read our article all about How green your ‘green’ energy really is and top tips to backing renewables through your choice of energy supplier.
The star ratings we give to each supplier are based on customer service, as measured by the Citizen’s Advice Bureau.
Which energy tariffs are good for electric car owners?
There are plenty of EV tariffs to choose from, so it’s best to use our EV energy tariff comparison tool which helps you pick the all-round best tariff for your electric car and home.
An EV adds around a month’s electricity use (250 kWh) for every 1,000 miles you drive. An average UK driver doing 8,000 miles would add around £30/month to their electricity bill by charging an electric car without switching tariff.
Looking for the best EV tariff?
Whilst the cheap off-peak rates for electricity can be quite appealing, remember that these tariffs might not always offer the best value if you have higher use in your home that you can’t shift – especially if you’re not doing very high mileage in your electric car.
Some of these tariffs are compatible with economy 7 and 10 meters – but most work with a smart meter. Speak to your utility about getting a smart meter installed.
How to choose an EV-friendly tariff
As you do your research into EV tariffs, you’ll have to make a judgement on the amount you will use at peak and off-peak rates. Our EV tariff comparison tool can help here, but you’ll also have to work out what any extra benefits – like public charging subscriptions – are worth to you.
Several companies offer ‘free miles’ when you plug in overnight. While thousands of miles sounds great, but don’t forget that 2,000 miles is a discount of less than £10 per month. Check the rates they quote for electricity at any other time of the day, and the standing charge. Depending on all your normal home use you might end up paying more for that cheap overnight charging.
Some offer a free or discounted charger installed at your home. This might suit you if you are considering buying your first an electric vehicle, but the unit rates might not stack up if you are already set up to charge at home.
Who are the best energy providers for electric vehicle owners?
Octopus energy have been hard to beat in terms of price and customer service for EV drivers. However, EDF and Ovo have both recently launched tariffs that are competitive on price and offer more flexibility for EV charging and different home energy use patterns.
Although it’s currently limited in terms of compatible car and charger types, E.On Next has a super low off-peak rate and a clever app to help you keep on top of your charging costs and track the carbon intensity of your energy.
At the other end of the scale, big 6 providers like Scottish Power make it very difficult to obtain a quote until you are already an energy customer.
Can I use an Economy 7 meter to charge my EV?
Most electricity suppliers will require you to fit a smart meter to your property before you can switch to one of their EV tariffs. They will generally do this for free. However, if you can’t do this yet (generally because of lack of mobile phone coverage these meters need) it’s also worth looking into having an Economy 7 or Economy 10 meter fitted to your property. This will allow you to take advantage of cheaper rates at off-peak times on several tariffs.
Does an electric car mean paying more on electricity bills?
Running costs for electric cars are much lower than a conventional car, but charging your car increases your home electricity consumption considerably. One unit (a kWh) will allow you to drive 3.5-4 miles. Some high-mileage drivers nearly double their energy use with home charging. If these drivers don’t switch, their bill with double too.
An average driver will see their use going up by around 50%. Switching to an EV tariff can mean paying about the same as before, especially if you can shift other use into the off-peak hours. As well as switching tariff, check out our top tips for saving money on EV charging.
If you switched to an EV to make a difference with zero-emission miles, why not get a complete picture of the impact you can make with clean home energy? Would solar pay? Does a home battery make sense? As well as finding the best EV tariff, our free EV charging and home energy assessment can show you how to squash your home’s energy carbon footprint and become more energy self-sufficient.