30th July 2021
Avro Energy claims to offer low-priced gas and electricity tariffs, and it does indeed often have cheap deals.
Avro’s founders said they set up the firm to tackle consumer disadvantage in the energy market, particularly around suppliers using complex concepts and terms. It pledged to be ‘a different approach to simplistic supply’.
It began trading in December 2015 from its Warwickshire base and has now grown to be a medium-sized supplier in the energy market, defined by the energy regulator Ofgem as having a market share of at least 1% in either gas or electricity but below 5% in both.
This is the fourth time it's been included in our annual energy companies satisfaction survey.
Avro Energy came 3rd out of 25 energy companies rated by 7,460 members of the public.
Its performance has improved since the previous year when it came joint 16th out of 35 companies rated. Despite the cheap deals it offers, however, it didn't achieve the highest rating of five stars for value for money. Keep reading to find out how it fared in other areas.
Great customer service.
It genuinely saves me money on my energy bills.
The graphic below shows the breakdown of its score in our latest survey.
Scroll down to read our verdict on Avro Energy, plus who its tariffs are suitable for.
Avro Energy’s customer score is among the best and it gets good ratings across the board.
The company offers tariffs for customers who want to manage their energy account online and pay by direct debit or through a prepayment meter.
Customers rated its billing highly, with the maximum five out of five stars for accuracy and four stars for clarity. One customer said they thought the firm's bills were 'easy to understand', while another said 'it accurately reflects my energy usage'.
It also received a respectable four out of five stars for complaints handling and value for money. Value for money was particularly impressive, with 88% of Avro's customers rating it 'excellent' or 'good' in this area, compared with 71% on average across all companies included.
When cheaper deals have come out I've been able to switch deals with no issues.
My only interaction was during the switch to Avro and it was the smoothest switch I have ever had with a fuel supplier.
It received four stars overall for customer service, too, however there were some negative comments. One customer told us it took a 'long time replying', while another said 'its phones just ring and ring'. But some of the more positive reflections included 'great service' and 'issues are dealt with quickly and resolved'.
Avro was the among the companies with the highest proportion of customers who hadn't experienced any problems in the previous 12 months, at 89%.
If you choose to switch to Avro Energy, it will take your first payment by direct debit 12 days after you sign up (before the end of the 14-day cooling-off period during which you can change your mind). This means you could make your first payment before Avro Energy supplies your gas and electricity.
In our snapshot investigation into energy companies’ waiting times in September 2020, Avro took 18 minutes 46 seconds on average to answer our calls, far slower than the median pick-up time of just under 6 minutes (5 minutes 57 seconds) for all 31 energy companies we called. However, there were six companies that were even slower, including PAYG provider Boost, which averaged wait times of over 40 minutes.
If you don't want to wait on hold, try Avro's email. Here it was the third fastest of the 12 firms we contacted using this method, responding in 1 hour 57 seconds on average.
Pros: Offers competitive tariffs
Cons: Slow to answer calls in our snapshot investigation
Avro Energy has not published its fuel mix yet.
June: Ofgem confirmed that Avro became a Data Communications Company (DCC) user, and so the ban on it taking on new customers was lifted.
April: Avro was banned from taking on new customers from 26 May until it became a DCC user, Ofgem announced.
The regulator said it was ‘not confident’ that Avro would voluntarily become a DCC user without a final order compelling it to do so.
Until it became a DCC user, customers with second-generation smart meters saw them stop being smart when they switched to Avro.
Avro had until 25 July to become a DCC user.
March: Ofgem ordered Avro Energy to become a user of the Data Communications Company (DCC), which is the central system that'll allow smart meters to work with any supplier if customers switch. To ensure that it does, Ofgem consulted on whether to issue a final order banning Avro from taking on new customers until it’s a DCC user.