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Open Electricity Retailers Price Comparison_ Find the Best Electricity Plan in Singapore (Q1 2023)

Open Electricity Retailers Price Comparison: Find the Best Electricity Plan in Singapore (Jan 2023)

profileMing Feng

Electricity Tariff in Singapore Q1 2023

The electricity tariff for Q1 2023 (1 Oct – 31 Dec 2022) has fallen again from 29.74 to 28.95 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) before GST! 

This amounts to 31.27 cents per kWh if you factor in the prevailing 8% Goods and Services Tax (GST).

Source: Giphy

If you’re wondering, “What is OEM?”

Just know that it means that you can switch to an electricity retailer and save money on your electricity bill

In fact, our colleague Joel recently wrote about why he decided to stick to an OEM retailer instead of Singapore Power (SP) Group, the government-affiliated electricity and gas distributor in Singapore.

Interested?

Find out who is the cheapest electricity retailer and how to make the switch!

Do note that prices and promotions are subject to change without prior notice. Information is accurate as of 9 Jan 2023. 


TL;DR: Singapore Electricity Price Comparison: Which Is the Cheapest Open Electricity Market (OEM) Plan in Singapore?

Cheapest Fixed Price Plan

Contract Length For Fixed Price PlanWho provides the cheapest plan?
(Incl. GST)
No ContractSingapore Power (SP):
31.27¢/kWh
6 MonthsGeneco:
31.17¢/kWh
12 MonthsGeneco/Senoko:
30.86¢/kWh
24 MonthsGeneco/Senoko:
30.66¢/kWh

Click to Teleport


Which Is The Cheapest Electricity Plan In Singapore?

Well… if there’s one thing that Singaporeans care deeply about.

It’s saving money.

Especially when it comes to utilities like electricity.

In fact, when we first wrote this article and made a price comparison between the OEM electricity retailers, even The Straits Times picked it up.

#weirdflexbutokay

What Is the Open Electricity Market (OEM)?

In October 2017, the Electricity Market Authority (EMA) first announced the Open Electricity Market (OEM) initiative in a bid to liberalise and encourage innovation in the power industry.

Fast forward to May 2019, all households in Singapore can choose to switch from the Singapore Power (SP) Group to their preferred electricity provider.

How Many Electricity Retailers Are There in Singapore?

There are currently eight surviving electricity retailers in Singapore:

  1. Geneco (by Seraya Energy Pte Ltd)
  2. Keppel Electric Pte Ltd
  3. PacificLight Energy Pte Ltd
  4. Sembcorp Power Pte Ltd
  5. Senoko Energy Supply Pte Ltd
  6. Sunseap Energy Pte Ltd 
  7. Tuas Power Supply Pte Ltd
  8. Union Power Pte Ltd 

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What Types of Electricity Price Plans Do They Offer?

Ah…

Now you’re asking the right questions.

Most OEM retailers offer a selection of two different price plans.

Fixed Price Plan

This is similar to SP Group’s electricity plan.

You sign a contract with them and pay a fixed rate for whatever amount of power is used.

For obvious reasons, all electricity retailers are offering fixed price plans that are competitively priced (read: lower than SP).

Discount Off Regulated Tariff (DORT) Plan

The price you pay is pegged to the regulated tariff announced by EMA, albeit at a discount.

SP Group’s price plan is always determined by EMA’s regulated tariff and DORT plans charge you by taking a percentage of the cost from the EMA stipulated electricity tariff for the quarter.

This means that you’ll always be paying less than what SP Group would charge you if you’re on a DORT plan.

However, there are no DORT plans offered in Q1 2023.

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Who Has the Cheapest Electricity Rates in Singapore?

With so many retailers, choosing one can be quite a chore.

But we’re here to help by comparing all the plans they have for households.

If this is your first time choosing an electricity retailer, kWh stands for kilowatt per hour, i.e., the amount of energy used per hour. 

In general, we noted that Fixed Price Plans are cheaper than what you would pay if you’re paying SP based on the current electricity tariff.

CompanyCheapest Fixed Rate PlanPromotions
No Contract6-Month12-Month Contract24-Month Contract
Singapore Power (SP)No contract:
31.27¢/kWh

Average Monthly Bill: $104.44
Geneco31.17¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $104.11
30.86¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $103.07
30.66¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $102.40
24 months:
- Use promo code GOLDEN88 ($50 bill rebate + $38 eCapitaVoucher, limited sign-ups)
Keppel Electric31.10¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $103.87
30.80¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $102.87
12 months:
- Citi: Enter promo code CITI10 for 1-year plan to enjoy $10 Bill Rebate when you set up for recurring bill payment with your Citi Credit Card.

- UOB: Enter promo code UOB20 for 24-month plan to enjoy $20 Bill Rebate when you set up for recurring bill payment with your UOB Credit Card.

24 months:
- Citi: Enter promo code CITI30 for 2-year plan to enjoy $30 Bill Rebate when you set up for recurring bill payment with your Citi Credit Card.
PacificLightEasy Peasy:
29.15¢/kWh (+ 50.22¢ daily charge)

Monthly Bill: $112.43

9 to 9:
16.20¢/kWh (+ 99.92¢ daily charge)

Monthly Bill: $84.08
Sunny Side-up / Savvy Saver:
31.89¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $106.51
Savvy Saver:
31.41¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $104.91

Save While Sleeping:
21.60¢/kWh (11pm - 7am)
43.20¢/kWh (7am - 11pm)

Monthly Bill: From $72.14

Stack It Up:
(i) Stack 1 - First 300kWh @32.95¢/kWh
(ii) Stack 2 - Usage between 301 to 600kWh @30.62¢/kWh
(iii) Stack 3 - Above 600kWh @29.81¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $109.26
12 months:
- HSBC: S$15 off for 12-month plans by setting up recurring bill payment using HSBC credit cards and registering to redeem rebates.

For all PacificLight customers. Valid till 31 December 2022. T&Cs apply.

- Apply promo code SUNNY5 during sign up for Sunny Side-up to redeem S$5 off.

24 months:

- Apply promo code GLOW88 & receive S$88 off new 24-month plans sign up.

- HSBC: Set up recurring bill payments using HSBC credit cards for S$25 off!

- UOB: Apply promo code UOB100 & set recurring bill payments with your UOB Card to receive S$100 off for new 24-month plans sign-up!

- Receive S$68 bill rebate via DBS Home & Living Marketplace when you sign up for a 24-month home plan with promo code DBS68.

- NTUC Union members enjoy S55 off your bill when you sign up a 24-month plan with promo code BEST55.

Valid till 31 December 2022.
Sembcorp PowerFixed Price Plan:
31.26¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $104.41

12M Sunshine Plan:
38.82¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $129.66
Fixed Price Plan:
- Citi: Set up recurring bill payments using Citi credit cards for a $10 bill rebate.

- POSB: Set up recurring bill payments using POSB Everyday Card for a $20 bill rebate.
Senoko Energy30.86¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $103.07
LifePower24:
30.66¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $102.40

LifeGreen24:
31.09¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $103.84
12 months:
- Citi: Use promo code CITISPRING10 to get a $10 bill rebate on any 12-month plan when you set up recurring payment with your Citi credit card within 1 month upon sign up.

- HSBC: Use promo code HSBCSPRING10 to get a $10 bill rebate on any 12-month plan when you set up recurring payment with your HSBC credit card within 1 month upon sign up.

24 months:
Use promo code SPRING60 to get a $60 bill rebate on any 24-month plan. Valid till 31 March 2023.

- Citi: Use promo code CITISPRING90 to get a $90 bill rebate on any 24-month plan when you set up recurring payment with your Citi credit card within 1 month upon sign up.

- HSBC: Use promo code HSBCSPRING90 to get a $90 bill rebate on any 24-month plan when you set up recurring payment with your HSBC credit card within 1 month upon sign up.
Sunseap42.12¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $140.68

Sunseap-100:

45.36¢/kWh

Monthly Bill:
$151.50
Tuas Power31.16¢/kWh for 12/18/24-month plans

Monthly Bill: $104.07
Union Power48.60¢/kWh

Monthly Bill: $162.32

Note: Prices inclusive of GST. The monthly bill is based on the electricity consumption of an average HDB 4-room flat in Singapore at 334 kWh (based on the latest data for Nov 2022).

Also, here are the cheapest fixed OEM plans (inclusive of GST) based on contract length:

  • No Contract/Shortest Plan:
    • Singapore Power: 31.27¢/kWh | Monthly Bill: $104.44
  • Six-Month Plan:
    • Geneco: 31.17¢/kWh | Monthly Bill: $104.11
  • 12-Month Plan:
    • Geneco/Senoko: 30.86¢/kWh | Monthly Bill: $103.07
  • 24-Month Plan: 
    • Geneco/Senoko: 30.66¢/kWh | Monthly Bill: $102.40

To save more, make sure to get referral codes and take advantage of the various credit card promotions available!

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SP Wholesale Electricity Plan

On top of the regulated tariff, the SP Group offers a non-standard price plan where customers can buy electricity directly from the wholesale electricity market.

The good thing about this price plan is that there is no lock-in period or contract.

This means that you can switch back to the SP-regulated tariff plan or sign up for an OEM plan without any penalty.

However, note that the wholesale electricity price (WEP) varies every half hour depending on the prevailing demand and supply situation in Singapore’s wholesale electricity market.

Thus you will have to bear the risk of price fluctuations if there are any abrupt changes in electricity demand and supply.

You can refer to the chart below to get an idea of the fluctuation of WEP:

Source: Singapore Power (SP) | Lowest and highest half-hourly wholesale electricity prices* in 2019.

For instance, in February 2019, the half-hourly WEP ranged between $0.14/kWh and a crazy $1.56/kWh.

Just in the months of October and November 2021, the half-hourly prices ranged between $0.069/kWh and $4.42/kWh!

Source: Singapore Power (SP)

According to EMA, the sharp increase was due to various factors such as the global energy crunch (likely an effect of the Russia-Ukraine war), severe weather events and unplanned outages of power generation plants. 

Thus, you should carefully consider this WEP as it is the more unstable and riskier option due to price fluctuations.

There is more certainty if you buy electricity from an electricity retailer under a Fixed Price or Discount Off the Regulated Tariff price plan.

To illustrate this, let’s look at this real-life example from someone working at WhatCard:

Source: WhatCard

Please ignore the many lines in the bill and focus on the person’s total electricity consumption and how much he paid for his electricity bill.

If you subtract the one-off security deposit cost of $98, the person only paid ~$85 for his electricity. Divide this over his electricity usage (801.34 kWh) and you’ll find that he is only paying $0.106/kWh which is way lower than the fixed price or discounted tariff rates offered by the OEM retailers.

But on balance, this past performance is not indicative of future returns and you may not always enjoy such a low rate.

For the uninitiated, global energy costs have been soaring recently.

In an interview with The Straits Times, Energy economist David Broadstock, a senior research fellow at the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) Energy Studies Institute, mentioned that:

the extreme wholesale market prices in October were not sustained for the whole month, and that the higher prices were mainly experienced in the first half.

Asked reasons for the volatility, he pointed to the global energy crunch.

From around end-September, the world entered a global gas crunch, driven by multiple factors, including higher demand from post-pandemic economic activity and the need for heating during winter months.

Yet, at the same time, severe weather events and a series of gas production outages have disrupted supplies of the fuel.

The global energy crunch has not yet dissipated. As such, the generation side of the power market, which needs to source natural gas from the international markets, still suffers heightened cost uncertainty.

This has trickled down to the electricity tariff which has increased for four straight quarters.

So much so that the average wholesale market rate rocketed up to about 50 cents per kWh in October 2021.

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Average Electricity Consumption and Electricity Bill of Singaporeans

If you’d like to know how much you can potentially save if you switched to an OEM retailer, let’s have a look at how much Singaporeans spend on electricity per month, on average.

We will be using the current Q1 2023 electricity tariff rate of 31.27 cents (including GST) and the latest data from SP (as of Nov 2022):

Property TypeNational Average Electricity Consumption Per Month (kWh)
(As of Nov 2022)
Average Cost of Electricity Per Month (Incl. GST)
HDB 1-Room130$40.65
HDB 2-Room171$53.47
HDB 3-Room245$76.61
HDB 4-Room334$104.44
HDB 5-Room389$121.64
HDB Executive476$148.85
Apartment496$155.10
Terrace785$245.47
Semi-Detached1,054$329.59
Bungalow2,182$682.31

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How Are Electricity Tariffs Calculated?

Singaporeans are subjected to Electricity Tariff, which is regulated by EMA.

For Q1 2023, the electricity tariff is 28.95 cents per kWh (excluding GST).

With GST, the electricity tariff is 31.27 cents per kWh.

For context, the Electricity Tariff is made up of four main components:

Electricity Tariff ComponentsPriceHow Often Is It Reviewed?
Market Administration and Power System Operation Fee

(Paid to Energy Company and Power System Operator)
0.06 cents/kWhAnnually
Market Support Services Fee (MSS)0.40 cents/kWhAnnually
Network Cost5.94 cents/kWhAnnually
Energy Costs22.55 cents/kWhQuarterly
Source: SP Group

The sum of the four components makes up your Electricity Tariff, which will be what the consumer pays for their monthly electricity bill.

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Some Commonly Asked Questions About The OEM

1. Why Are Electricity Retailers Able Charge Lower For Electricity Than SP Group?

You’re probably going, “WALAO, has SP Group been overcharging me ALL THESE YEARS?!”

Not exactly.

The regulated tariff considers the cost of producing and delivering electricity, which includes the cost of building and operating power plants and maintaining the power grid.

The rates offered by retailers, on the other hand, reflect current market conditions and the short-term costs of producing electricity.

If the current market conditions see excess supply compared to demand, the price of electricity will naturally be lower.

These retailers can then go into the wholesale market and buy electricity in bulk from power generation companies.

Of course, these prices offered by retailers are only fixed during your contract.

So they can adjust their prices and discounts over time.

But fret not, you can always switch back to buying electricity at the regulated tariff from SP Group at any time – after you complete your contract of course; unless you wish to pay the early termination fee and early account closure fees

Speaking of early termination fees, please keep a lookout for them before you put pen to paper and sign the contract. 

For example, OEMs like Tuas Power charge a $200 (including GST) early termination fee for their plans.

Not to mention that Geneco charges early termination fees per month (excluding GST) as follows:

  • HDB 1 or 2 rooms: $10
  • HDB 3, 4 or 5 rooms / HDB Executive: $15
  • Executive Condominium / Condominium / Private Apartment: $20
  • Terrace House/ Semi-Detached House: $40
  • Bungalow: $75

There will also be an account closure fee of $10.80 (GST inclusive), collected by Geneco on behalf of SP Services.

Apart from early termination fees, be sure to take note of the hidden fees or terms & conditions when choosing your electricity retailer!

2. How Do I Switch to Electricity Retailer?

As of today, you can switch to an Open Electricity Market retailer anytime.

But as with anything that has to do with money, take the time to understand the OEM before you switch.

The retailers might be throwing promo codes around like Oprah Winfrey and shouting out how they’re the cheapest in town.

Source: imgflip

But you really should take the time to understand the other stuff which electricity retailers don’t usually talk about like:

  • Administrative fee
  • AMI meter installation fee
  • Auto-renewal of contract clause
  • Carbon tax
  • Early termination charges
  • Late payment fee
  • Paper bill
  • Security deposit
  • Transmission loss factor
  • U-Save GST Voucher

Read more: Hidden Fees And T&Cs To Take Note When Choosing An Electricity Retailer

3. What Are Transmission Loss Factors (TLF)?

To put it simply, it’s a scaling factor that has been applied at the metering point to account for network and transformer loss.

Think of it this way: To get you one unit of electricity, the retailer needs to send two units of electricity to account for the possible loss of one unit of electricity when electricity travels across such a vast distance from the power plant to your home. That’s the TLF that they need to factor in when charging you.

Most of us fall under the 230kv/400kV load.

Source: OEM

SP Group should have already adjusted this to reflect the actual consumer use, so retailers will adhere to SP Group’s recommended TLF and bill you accordingly.

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Wanna Switch But Don’t Know Which?

With so many options in the market, it’s hard to decide which to switch to.

Besides comparing prices, why not find out what real users have to say about the various electricity retailers through our SeedlyReviews?

Find Me The Best Electricity Plan Now!

Given that the prices would likely increase further, you can also consider using a credit card that helps you earn cashback as you’re paying for utilities.

 

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About Ming Feng
A stint in Bloomberg gifted me with a beer belly, which only grew larger when I moved on to become a Professional Trader. Now I turn caffeine into digestible finance-related content.
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