Watchdog: Is Origin Energy's new plan really 'predictable'?

Lindsay Bennett
By Lindsay Bennett | 20 April 2016

As featured in AdNews magazine, Watchdog is that mighty defender of consumers against BS marketing and advertising claims.

This week Watchog goes up against Origin Energy, who is offering a service which allows Australians to predict their energy bill by locking in how much they will pay each month, removing any nasty surprises. But is it available to everyone?

AdNews: I’m interested in signing up for the Predictable Plan. I pay $200 a month now. Can I lock that price in?

Origin Energy: We will generate a quote for you based on your previous bills and then determine the price we can lock in for you. What is the name on your account?

AdNews: I’m currently with Simply Energy.

Origin Energy: Unfortunately to apply for the Predictable Plan you must be in our billing system for three months prior. I can sign you up and then after 85 days we can assess your bill.

AdNews: So if it’s only for current customers, I won’t be able to avoid the nasty surprise of my energy bill for three months?

Origin Energy: Yes. But after three months you will be eligible.

AdNews: Well that wasn’t very predictable.

Origin Energy: Let me sign you up and we’ll figure it out together.

Final Reckoning

This watchdog should really learn to read the fine print before getting worked up about a predictable energy plan without any nasty surprises. Unfortunately only previous account holders are eligible for the plan, meaning some people are going to miss out. The rep was helpful, in fact she nearly had this old dog signing up.

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