Boost Energy is a sister company of OVO Energy. Initially established in 2015 as Smart PAYG+, a collaboration between OVO and Pay Monthly energy, Boost became its own brand in 2017 so that the team could put all of its energy and attention towards offering the most comprehensive, customer-focussed Pay As You Go (PAYG) energy service in the UK.
Last updated: 23 October 2020
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Boost is a specialist pay-as-you-go (PAYG) energy brand that supplies electricity and gas on a prepaid basis. While still relatively new, Boost Energy has built a strong reputation based on its easy-to-use, customer-first service and outlook. It is part of the Ovo Energy family and is also sometimes referred to as Boost Power or Boost Electric.
Boost energy can trace its history back to 2015. This was when Ovo Energy set up Smart PAYG+ in collaboration with Pay Monthly energy. Under the OVO banner, however, PAYG plans were a low priority. Understanding that many customers rely on PAYG plans and that, at the time, there were no companies devoted to this market, OVO created the dedicated PAYG brand Boost Power to give it a company entirely focussed on providing the best possible experience for PAYG customers.
Boost Power uses variable rather than fixed-price rates, which means that the standing charge and cost of energy fluctuates according to wholesale energy prices. Boost’s electricity and gas pricing also varies considerably according to your location. We found differences of up to two pence in daily standing charges and unit costs across a range of postcodes, so it’s worth checking prices where you are. The table below represents costs in central Birmingham, which seems to be one of the cheaper areas for Boost.
|Electricity Unit Rate||17.29p per kWh|
|Electricity Standing Charge||28.91p per day|
|Gas Unit Rate||3.41p per kWh|
|Gas Standing Charge: 36.33p per day||36.33p per day|
Prices valid September 2020
PAYG (or prepaid) energy plans enable you to pay for your electricity and gas in advance, rather than receiving an energy bill at the end of the month that sets out what you owe. With PAYG plans like those offered by Boost Energy, you can top up your account whenever you want and by however much you choose, which gives you more control over your finances. You also only pay for the electricity and gas you’re using at that time – there are no estimated readings or attempts to balance costs across winter and summer. Like most PAYG plans, you can top up Boost’s prepayment meters at a local PayPoint shop or by logging in to your online account or using an app on your phone.
For some, including Boost Energy’s customers, this flexible way of paying for energy is a more attractive option than receiving monthly bills, which can be difficult to predict and plan for. It’s worth noting, however, that costs for PAYG plans are generally higher than for standard, fixed-price energy plans. With most tariffs, you’ll also need to pay a daily standing charge, regardless of how much energy you use.
Boost Energy has two plans: Traditional PAYG and Smart PAYG+.
Traditional PAYG is a standard prepayment meter plan. You’ll be able to top up your account at your local PayPoint, but not online. Smart PAYG+ is Boost’s smart meter plan. You’ll receive a smart meter to help you track your usage, and you’ll be able to top up your account at a PayPoint or via the internet. Smart PAYG+ plans also offer customers Boost Energy’s Winter Wallet and Emergency Boost services, outlined below.
Both plans come with the following benefits:
Yes. Unlike customers of Boost Power’s Traditional PAYG plan who are forced to take a special key or card to a licensed PayPoint store – generally a post office or newsagent – to top up their meters, Smart PAYG+ subscribers can top up their Boost account without leaving the house. With the Boost Energy app, you can purchase credit anywhere, anytime, and the funds will be applied to your meter immediately. You can also use the app to track your usage, which should help you budget and plan your energy consumption. You’re also able to set up SMS reminders to notify you when your credit begins to run low. Those who prefer a web interface, can log in to Boost Energy’s site and manage their account from there.
If you decide to switch your energy provider to Boost Energy and opt for its Smart PAYG+ plan, Boost Energy will install a smart meter for you free of charge. You’ll be able to immediately top it up online or by logging in to the Boost Power app on your mobile, so you don’t have to wait to enjoy the benefits of using a smart meter.
Boost Power is committed to installing smart meters in as many UK households as possible, as soon as possible. The UK government has asked all the nation’s power companies to replace old meters with smart meters by 2024 where practical, and Boost Energy is supporting this endeavour as part of its Smart PAYG+ service.
Smart meters help you keep track of your consumption with real-time, detailed data on your energy usage. You can view your stats when you access your ‘MyBoost’ online account or log in to the Boost app. You can then use this information to identify ways to save money. This is doubly useful for PAYG customers, who need to decide how much to spend when they top up their account.
You can still switch and get your power from Boost Energy even if you already have a smart meter – although your meter may lose some of its smart capabilities if it’s not compatible with Boost’s system. Boost Power will verify that your smart meter is compatible when you switch to them.
Like most providers of prepayment meters, Boost Energy recognises that it’s not always possible to top up your Boost account straight away when your balance hits zero. That’s why it offers its customers 24 hours of emergency credit before disconnecting their electricity and gas meters. Emergency credit automatically becomes available the moment your Boost Energy account is drained. It’s not free money, though. The cost of electricity or gas used during the emergency-credit period will be deducted when you next top up your account. You can’t use the emergency credit facility again until you’ve paid off any outstanding charges. Once you have cleared any debts and put your account back into credit, Boost Power will automatically reconnect you.
Smart PAYG+ customers who haven’t managed to top up their Boost account during the 24-hour-emergency-credit period don’t need to panic about being cut off because Boost will lend them an extra £30 credit via its Emergency Boost feature. Emergency Boost is only available for Smart PAYG+ customers, and is activated easily through the Boost Power app. You’ll immediately receive the £30 credit, with no extra charges or interest.
Boost Energy also promises that customers will never be disconnected between 4pm and 10am, Monday to Friday, or any time over the weekend or on bank holidays – even if the customer’s emergency credit runs out.
Energy bills can be a daunting prospect when winter kicks in and keeping your home warm becomes a costly task. Boost Power helps Smart PAYG+ customers plan ahead with the Winter Wallet. Available through the Boost app, you can set a saving target and Boost will help you reach your goal by taking credit from your balance every day over summer, when you spend less on energy, and storing it in your Winter Wallet. These funds can then be used to help pay for your Boost electricity and gas during the colder period. Boost Energy offers further incentives for this scheme in that shape of a monthly prize draw for customers who save regularly – the top prize is a year’s worth of free energy. The feature is extremely popular: 42,000 Boost Energy customers used the Winter Wallet service in 2019, tucking away a total of £4 million to help with winter bills.
There are many ways to get in touch with Boost Energy’s customer service team, including via the company's website and through a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter video service.
|Phone number||0330 102 7517|
|Address||Boost Power, 1 Rivergate, Temple Quay, Bristol, BS1 6ED|
Boost Power focuses exclusively on PAYG plans, which are an attractive option if you want to keep a tight rein on your budget. You only ever pay for what you use, and you choose how much to spend on energy and when to make those payments. There’s no contract and no unpredictable monthly bills. Boost Energy has invested heavily in its customer service, which has helped earn it four stars out of five on Trustpilot, and it offers a range of easy-to-use tools for managing its smart-meter accounts.
PAYG energy isn’t for everyone, however. Customers on prepaid plans often pay more than those on standard or fixed-rate tariffs and they also need to plan how they will pay for extra top-ups during the winter period. Some customers’ homes won’t be suitable for smart meters, which are needed to access Boost Power’s most convenient plan: Smart PAYG+. And those forced to choose Boost Energy’s Traditional PAYG plan will need to factor in the inconvenience of topping up at a local PayPoint shop – especially when it’s cold, wet or in the middle of a lockdown.
If a PAYG system suits you, Boost Energy’s Winter Wallet and Emergency Boost features make this customer-service-focussed provider well worthy of consideration.