Pensioners duped by SA Government and Origin Energy

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The Origin Energy Concession Discount Offer

The Government of South Australia are promoting the Origin Energy Concession Card Offer to Pensioners under the SA Concession Energy Discount Offer (SACEDO). Confusingly The South Australian Government has selected Origin, which seems to imply that concession cardholders should choose Origin to qualify for the Energy Bill Concession of $233.60/yr, which is not the case.

SACEDO is available only through Origin Energy. According to SA government and Origin energy concession card holders get a great discount on their electricity rates, with no lock-in contracts and no end date. For electricity and gas, SA residents can get 21% and 11% respectively off the Reference Price with Origin. Sound attractive?

Scandalously it is not. It’s far from the cheapest plan available.

How much extra do Origin Energy Concession Card Holders pay?

An SA Origin Energy Pensioners family could have saved $281 by getting the cheapest electricity and gas prices compared with the Government supported Origin plan designed specifically to ‘benefit’ concession holders or seniors. Concession cardholders must be wondering “Why are the SA Government helping Energy companies to exploit Concession cardholders?” While we cannot be sure of the arrangement between Origin and the SA Government, based on similar experience elsewhere, it seems likely that Origin Energy pay the SA Government for their sponsorship. If not why would they promote such an inferior offer?
The following table and graph show the savings available in 2 different rate type across South Australia. For the savings calculation we have applied the average usage for 3 person households in SA.

Origin Concession Card Holders Discount in South Australia

Origin Energy Pensioner Concession customers in SA could save $133/year on their electricity and $148/yr on gas. Overall savings average $281. The savings didn’t vary much between different tariff types as shown below.

Savings ($/yr.)AnytimeTime of useAverage
Electricity$126$141$133
Gas$148$148$148
Total$274$289$281

South Australian Government needs to stop exploiting Concession Customers

According to Steven Marshall the PREMIER OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA,

“Taking up the new Origin offer could result in an average saving of $384 per household each year depending on what plan households are currently on.”

We have shown in a nutshell that Origin Energy pensioner concession is an expensive choice for concession card holders in SA. Far from saving customers $384 as spruiked by the State Government, it costs an extra $281. Shockingly, the SA Government is urging more than 145,000 of the most vulnerable households to switch to this plan.

But that is not the end of it. Unlike in other States, the SA Government require Pensioners to reapply for their concession payment of $233.60/yr every time they switch suppliers. Shame on you, SA Government for making it harder than it needs to be for Concession card holders to switch suppliers.

Origin’s Corporate Responsibility? Missing in action?

This is a second black mark for Origin. Their “Origin Everyday Rewards” plan costs an average of $436 more than the cheapest price. See Origin Energy Everyday Rewards – Benefit or Penalty?

Cheapest Energy for Concession Card Holders

With Energy Umpire you get a simple solution. We compare every offer from every supplier and get you the cheapest. We do not accept any commissions from suppliers so you get an independent comparison. When there is a cheaper price available later, you get alerted to it.

Discounts for Seniors

Many Pensioners are also Seniors, and you might be wondering about seniors discounts. AGL have been promoting discounts for Seniors for many years. See our blog Is the AGL Seniors Discount a Good Deal?

The AGL Seniors Plus plan is an expensive way to get your electricity or gas. Over the 4 States including SA, it costs $437 more than the cheapest price. In the 3 States where it is sponsored by the State Governments, Victoria, NSW and Queensland, it costs $380 more than the cheapest price.

AGL Seniors Discount in South Australia

Seniors on the AGL Plan pay $560 more than the cheapest plan in SA. It’s extraordinary that AGL could put their name to such an appallingly expensive plan.

Savings ($/yr.)AnytimeTime of useAverage
Electricity$256$305$281
Gas$279$279$279
Total$535$584$560