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Updated: 6 Jun 2022

Octopus Energy

Octopus Energy claims to be ‘doing energy better' – and our expert analysis suggests it's living up to expectations. It's a Which? Recommended Provider for the fifth year in a row.
Sarah Ingrams

Octopus Energy is just six years old in 2022, but in that short time it has grown to supply energy to two million homes and repeatedly achieved our coveted Which? Recommended Provider award.

It's a Which? Recommended Provider again in 2022.

It says it provides 'great value for the long term' and aims to make everything as simple and easy as possible for its customers.

Octopus Energy's range of deals include one designed for electric vehicle drivers, and a smart tariff with rates that track wholesale energy prices every half hour so customers can adapt their use to when electricity is cheapest. All of its tariffs match customers' electricity use with renewable sources. Additionally, its Super Green tariff has full carbon offset for gas.

Only one of its tariffs has an exit fee.

Octopus Energy supplies gas and electricity to Affect Energy, Co-operative Energy, Ebico, M&S Energy, Qwest Energy and Roar Power customers. 

It also acquired customers from several energy suppliers - including Avro Energy, Engie, Flow Energy, GB Energy Supply, Gen4U and Iresa - when the firms stopped trading or Octopus bought them.

In addition, it created a fund of £5m to help customers struggling to keep up with their energy bills. Its customers can apply for grants between £50 and £500 to help make their gas and electricity payments.

Read on to find out how Octopus Energy measures up to more longstanding firms.

Compare gas and electricity prices using Which? Switch to see if you could save money with Octopus Energy.

Octopus Energy logo

Octopus Energy customer review

Octopus Energy is back in first place this year, up from second place last year, out of 16 energy companies as rated in the latest annual Which? customer survey of 8,390 members of the public. It's also Which? Recommended Provider (WRP) for the fifth year in a row, after passing all of our tough assessments. 

An excellent standard of an all round service. Transparency of billing and easy to contact customer services. It's a huge improvement compared to my previous experiences with other energy providers.

Octopus Energy customer

Clear pricing, renewable energy sources and a stable company

Octopus Energy customer

Find out more about how firms qualify to become a Which? Recommended Provider for energy, or read on to see what Octopus Energy’s customers think of it and if it's the best energy firm for you. 

Or, read about brands supplied by Octopus Energy, including Affect Energy, Co-operative Energy and M&S Energy.

Octopus Energy score

The table below shows the breakdown of Octopus Energy’s score in our latest survey.

Scroll down to read our full verdict on Octopus Energy and to find out more about its prices.

Customer score70%
Customer service
Bill accuracy
Bill clarity
Value for money

Based on a survey in September 2021 of 997 Octopus Energy customers.

Find out how Octopus Energy compares with other energy firms in our guide to the best and worst energy companies.

Which? verdict on Octopus Energy

Pros: A Which? Recommended Provider; relatively fast to respond to phone calls; customers say its bills are very clear and accurate

Cons: Not as speedy as some at resolving complaints

Octopus Energy has been a high-achieving firm from the start. It has succeeded in keeping customers happy while it has grown from a techy start-up to an established brand supplying energy to 5% of homes in Britain. It's the only energy firm we've awarded WRP status to more than twice. 

Consistently low prices and excellent customer service

Octopus Energy customer

It gets strong ratings across the board, from its bills to its customer service. Its customers were the least likely to have had problems with their supplier in our survey. Almost eight in 10 (79%) of Octopus' customers called its customer service good and almost three quarters (74%) said they were satisfied with it as their supplier overall.

Octopus Energy also passed our assessment of its procedures, was better than average for its customer response times and complaints handling, and passed our pricing check, putting it in line to be a Which? Recommended Provider for 2022.

Out of the suppliers in our survey, it had the highest proportion of customers who rated all four measures as 'excellent' and was the only company to get four, four star ratings.

Two year fixed tariff price is very good and bills are always on time and accurate. An excellent, reliable company

Octopus Energy customer

No other firm got a four star rating or higher for bill accuracy. 

No firms managed the full five stars in any area. 

Octopus Energy's complaints

In our survey, just 4% of Octopus Energy's customers said they had something to complain about. This was the lowest proportion of customers among all the energy companies we heard from respondents about.

Of those that did have reason to complain to the firm, however, almost four in 10 (39%) did so about customer service and 36% did so about their bills or statements.

Wind turbines and Octopus Energy logo

Can you join Octopus Energy with a prepayment meter?

Yes, Octopus Energy can supply customers with traditional prepayment meters. You'll need to email it with your details to get a quote and sign up. 

It doesn't yet supply customers with smart prepayment meters but is installing 'prepay compatible' smart meters and plans to have its smart prepayment services up and running in the second half of 2021.

Prepayment customers can get emergency credit of £5 (£10 for gas between October and April) when less than £1 electricity credit or £2 gas credit is left on the meter. You'll repay it in full next time you top up.

If you run out of credit between 4pm and 10am on weekdays, at weekends on bank holidays, your electricity won't shut off. Instead the cost of any electricity you use will be added onto your meter as debt and you'll pay it off next time you top-up. This is called 'friendly credit'. It doesn't apply to gas. 

Does Octopus Energy sell renewable energy?

Octopus Energy sells 100% renewable electricity, some of which it generates itself, some of which it buys directly from generators and some of which it backs with renewable energy certificates.

Proportion of renewable electricity sold to domestic customersGenerates renewable electricity?Buys renewable electricity directly from generators?Proportion of customers’ renewable electricity matched by REGO certificates?Generates or buys directly from fossil fuels?Sells green gas?
100%Yes (ns)Yes (4%)52%, and 43% backed by GoOsNoNo

Proportion of renewable electricity according to Octopus Energy’s 2020/21 fuel mix. Other responses based on information provided by suppliers in August and September 2021.

Octopus Energy Generation (part of Octopus Group) manages renewable electricity projects across six countries, including solar, onshore wind, hydro, biomass and landfill gas. Octopus buys some renewable power directly from its generation arm. Some is sold on the open market. 

It also owns two wind turbines, in East Yorkshire and Caerphilly, which produce enough electricity for 800 homes. 

Customers who live near the turbines can get 20% cheaper rates when they’re generating power, by signing up to the ‘Fan Club’ tariff. When the wind is strong, the discount rises to 50%.

Octopus Energy also buys energy from the open market alongside REGO certificates. It also buys Guarantees of Origin (GoOs) certificates which match customers’ electricity use with renewable power generated in Europe.

Octopus Energy does not sell green gas. It says ‘our focus is on electrifying the world so we can ditch natural gas for good, and run on affordable 100% green electricity’. It’s investing in electric heating and transport.

Find out more about the differences between energy companies’ renewable electricity.

Octopus Energy also offers a time-of-use tariff with changes prices depending on wholesale costs, vehicle to grid charging and has set up a research centre to look at the future of energy.

Octopus Energy in the news

Octopus Energy in 2022

June: The supplier gave away 7,000 free electric blankets to customers as part of its scheme designed to support customers worried about heating costs and at risk of becoming cold. It hopes the initiative will to reduce people's energy consumption and lower their bills.

April: The energy provider made its first investment in a large UK offshore wind farm, and said it would 'massively ramp up' similar operations over the coming year.

March: Octopus Energy announced that its standard variable tariff, known as Flexible Octopus, would be £50 below the price cap at £1,921 for a typical user, while its standard variable tariff for new customers would be £1,969 or £2 below the price cap. 

The company doubled its customer financial hardship fund, Octo Assist, from £2.5m to £5m.  

February: Octopus Energy upped its payments on its fixed export tariffs by over a third (36%) on 1 February 2022. The change means Octopus pays customers who generate electricity themselves more per kWh exported than any other UK energy company for their excess energy sent back to the grid.

Octopus Energy in 2021

September: Octopus Energy was chosen as the supplier of last resort for Avro Energy's 580,000 customers when the smaller supplier stopped trading.

April: Octopus Energy announced that it will supply energy for Ebico's customers. Not-for-profit firm Ebico will be responsible for signing-up new customers while Octopus will provide its customer service. 

March: Octopus Energy Group bought its sister company, Octopus Renewables. Its 300 projects, including solar and offshore wind, can produce over 2.8GW of renewable power.

Customers were also paid a total of £121,445 after Octopus Energy overcharged them when they switched supplier or tariff between 2013 and 2020. It was one of 18 energy firms found by regulator Ofgem to have failed to uphold these rules. Over 1 million customers were affected.

Octopus Energy’s 19,712 affected customers received £6.16 each, on average.

January: Octopus Energy launched a local time-of-use tariff that charges customers less when the wind blows more. Called 'Fan Club', the tariff is available only to people who live close to Octopus Energy's new wind turbines in Caerphilly in South Wales, and Market Weighton in Yorkshire.

Octopus Energy in 2020

December: It announced plans to launch the brand in Japan, in partnership with Tokyo Gas

January: Octopus bought Engie UK and took on its 70,000 customers.

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