EV Power Plans: The Best Power Plans for Electric Vehicles

If you’re considering an electric vehicle, you should also consider your power plan options. If not, you won’t be taking full advantage of the savings to be had. In fact, with the right plan, you could be paying the equivalent of just a few cents per litre of fuel! Canstar looks at the best power plans for electric vehicles.

While a high sticker price has long been a barrier to widespread EV adoption, and the Clean Car Discount has aimed to help alive this, the fuel savings EVs offer has never been in question.

No matter how much power you suck up charging your EV in the driveway. Or how often you pay to use a public fast-charge station, you’re likely to spend less than you would on good old 91.

And as a result, it’s the driving factor as to why many ditch the pump for the plug.

In fact, looking at last year’s most popular EVs, and based on a national average electricity price of 31c per kWh, the average cost per 100km can be seen below:

Car model kWh per 100km Cost per 100km
Tesla Model 3 14.3kWh $4.43
MG ZS EV 18.6kWh $5.77
Hyundai Kona EV 14.3kWh $4.43

Compare this to the average cost of last year’s three most popular petrol models (based on a price of $3 per litre):

Car model l per 100km Cost per 100km
Mitsubishi Outlander 7.2l $21.60
Toyota RAV4 7.1l $21.30
Mitsubishi ASX 7.6l $22.80

As you can see, the difference can be stark. Especially when you consider:

  • a) the given electricity price (31c per kWh) doesn’t take into account the discounts you can get through EV power plans
  • b) petrol is now moving well beyond $3 a litre, so the above quotes are, if anything, generous to petrol vehicles

EV power plans

What is an EV power plan?

An EV power plan is a power plan that is available only to EV owners and provides a discount on your variable electricity rate during night hours.

For example, you may be paying 27c per kWh, but from 9pm – 7am every night your electricity provider gives you 50% off your variable rate. As most EV owners charge their electric vehicles at night, after work/before bed, this is the perfect time to take advantage of cheaper electricity and charge up.

Even though these plans are designed for charging an EV, and are only available to EV owners, you can take advantage of the discounted night rates in other ways. For example, turning on the dishwasher, doing a load of laundry, showering, and running the heat pump.

Time of Use power plans

Although not specifically for EV owners, Time of Use power plans are becoming increasingly popular, and are equally as good (if not better) for an EV owner. Similar to EV power plans, these plans offer a discounted night rate. However, many of these plans also offer discounts throughout the day, outside of peak times.

For example, Octopus Energy structures its power plans in a way that offers three rates for power:

  • Peak: 7am-11am & 5pm-9pm, you pay your standard per kWh rate for electricity
  • Off-peak: 11am-5pm, 9pm-11pm & 7am-11pm on weekends, you receive a discounted rate
  • Night: 11pm-7am, you pay the cheapest rate

As you can see, not only do you benefit from the option to charge your EV at a discounted rate, but you can take advantage of cheap power throughout the day and all weekend. This makes it ideal not just for EV owners but for people who work from home, or are up extra early/late, and therefore can shift their usage outside of peak times.

EV power plans: things to consider

Before signing up for an EV (or Time of Use) power plan, you may want to consider some of the following:

  • Smart meter – a smart meter will likely be required to cater for the tariff structure. If you don’t have a smart meter installed at your property, power providers may install one
  • Peak pricing – some providers may charge a higher peak price to make up for the cheaper off-peak rates
  • Shifting usage – can you shift your usage to the discounted times and take full advantage of the cheaper rates?
  • EV ownership – if choosing an EV power plan (as opposed to a regular Time of Use plan) you will need to provide proof of ownership, and the plan will only be for as long as you maintain the car ownership
  • Fixed or open term – do you have to sign on for a fixed term and, if so, what break fees apply should you leave early?
  • Benefits – are there other benefits or incentives?

EV power plans: what’s available?

Below we have listed some of the EV power plans currently available, followed by a list of current* Time of Use plans that may also be suitable for EV owners.

mercury energy logo yellow

Mercury

Mercury’s EV Fuel Package is available for residential customers, providing 20% off electricity usage between 9pm and 7am every night (standard plan rates apply outside of these hours).

You or a member of your household will need to either own or have a long-term lease for a plug-in vehicle. The offer, which can also apply for a bach, runs for two years from the date of sign-up.

Further information on Mercury’s EV Fuel Package can be found here.

Meridian Energy

Meridian Energy’s Electric Car Plan is available for residential customers who own a plug-in EV. The day/night plan is structured so that customers pay different rates for power during the day and at night (between 9pm and 7am). Rates during the day will be higher, but rates at night will be significantly lower.

Meridian advises that the plan is fixed for a term of three years and customers who sign up can get a $300 bill credit. Meanwhile, if you’re not keen on a day/night power plan, you can get in touch with Meridian to discuss your options.

You can check out Meridian’s Electric Car Plan here.

Genesis Energy

Genesis Energy’s EV plan offers residential customers who own an eligible plug-in EV registered to their property cheaper power rates at night (between 9pm and 7am).

Under the plan, which runs for a 12-month fixed term, Genesis Energy’s night electricity rates are 50% lower than its day rates.

Find out more about Genesis’ Energy EV plan here.

Time of Use power plans

Below we have listed power providers that offer a Time of Use power plan. As mentioned above, while not exclusively for EV users, they can provide the same benefits. And for some users, will provide many more benefits that make them a better option than many of the dedicated EV power plans.

Flick Electric logo

Flick Electric Co.

Flick Electric Co is a proudly independent power company based in Te Whanganui-a-Tara (Wellington). Founded in 2014 by six Wellingtonians, the company says they’re built on the bones of fairness, honesty and transparency.

It’s also the winner of Canstar Blue’s latest award for Most Satisfied Customers | Electricity Providers.

Flick Electric’s Off Peak power plan lets you save between 21-59% (based on meter configuration, network area and load group) of your peak power price.

Peak times: 7am-11am, 5pm-9pm
Off-peak times:
11am-5pm (excluding Christchurch), 9pm-7am & All day weekends.

Octopus Energy logo

Octopus Energy

A new face in power here in New Zealand, Octopus energy are storming onto the market with great rates. Notably, if you’re a low user, which most Kiwis are, you’ll pay no fixed daily rate whatsoever. In a market where several providers have just doubled their low user daily rates to 66c a day, that could provide a massive saving.

Do note, however, that you may find your peak rates with Octopus are a bit higher. So you’ll need to use plenty of off-peak and night power to compensate.

Peak times: 7am-11am, 5pm-9pm

Off-peak: 11am-5pm, 9pm-11pm & 7am-11pm on weekends

Night: 11pm-7am everyday

→Related article: Octopus Energy: A New Deal in NZ Electricity

powershop logo

Powershop

Powershop power works a little differently from other power companies. Its online shop sells power packs, where you can buy a range of special discounted packs of power. Powershop’s Get Shifty rates offers you discounted rates during off-peak hours. These times differ depending on your area and network. You can see more info around off-peak hours here.

Electric Kiwi logo

Electric Kiwi

Electric Kiwi’s MoveMaster plan offers discounted rates during off-peak shoulder times, and half-price rates during off-peak. Notably, Electric Kiwi’s morning peak rates are just 7am-9am. Whereas all other providers charge peak rates until 11am. So if you’re around the house mid-late morning, you can get a great deal.

Throw in the fact that all Electric Kiwi plans come with an hour of free off-peak power, and there’s plenty of savings to be had!

Peak times: 7am-11am, 5pm-9pm
Off-peak shoulder times: 9am-5pm, 9pm-11pm
Half price night times:
11pm-7am

ecotricity logo

Ecotricity

Ecotricity sets itself apart as New Zealand’s only provider of 100% Renewable and carboNZero Certified electricity. Its simple plans offer the choice of a fixed-price for power, or a time of use plan. This includes just the two rates – one for peak and one for off-peak.

Peak times: 7am-11am, 5pm-9pm
Off-peak times: 9pm-7am, 11am-5pm

Contact Energy Logo NEW

Contact

Contact Energy’s Good Night’s Plan is not a peak/off-peak plan in the traditional sense. But it does offer the opportunity to shift your usage and save, with three hours every night of free power. Note that outside of the free hours there is just a single variable rate, so you don’t get the benefit of off-peak rates during the day, or all through the night.

*Information correct as of June 2022.

Compare electricity providers with Canstar Blue

If you have an Electric vehicle, or are thinking about getting one, the right power plan is paramount. But finding the right provider can be a real challenge. Less than half of Kiwis believe they are getting a good deal on their power, yet only 12% of us have actually changed our electricity provider in the last 12-months.

If you are looking to change electricity providers, or are unsure if you are getting the best deal, Canstar Blue can help. We rate NZ power companies for customer satisfaction and value for money, see the table below for some of the results, or you can click on the button below for the full results of our survey.

Canstar Blue’s latest review of NZ power companies compares them on customer satisfaction. The table below is an abridged version of our full results, available here.


See Our Ratings Methodology

Compare electricity providers for free with Canstar Blue!


About the author of this page

 Martin KovacsThis report was written by Canstar author Martin Kovacs. Martin is a freelance writer with experience covering the business, consumer technology and utilities sectors. Martin has written about a wide range of topics across both print and digital publications, including the manner in which industry continues to adapt and evolve amid the rollout of new technologies


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