Switching Information

Review and reduce your regular bills. Remember, being a loyal customer doesn’t always pay. If you switch your bank account, electricity tariff or car insurance provider you could save £100s.

 

Energy Supplier

All electricity consumers in Northern Ireland, and gas consumers in Belfast and Larne are able to switch supplier. With the right information and advice, switching can be a quick and hassle free experience. Switching your energy supplier could not only save you money but you may also receive a better service.

There are five ways to switch:

  • Switch your supplier;
  • Switch your tariff;
  • Switch your payment method;
  • Switch the way you receive your bills; or
  • A combination of all of these.

How to Switch

  1. It’s simple. Contact the new supplier. It will start the switching process and deal with the paperwork. You have a ten working days ‘cooling off period’, in which you can cancel the switch, if you change your mind. The switch must be completed within 15 working days after the end of the cooling off period, unless you have a longer notice period to give to your old supplier.
  2. For electricity you will need your Meter Point Reference Number (MPRN), which can be found on your paper or online bill, or your 19 digit code if you have a pre-payment meter. For natural gas use your SMP Reference Number, which can be found on your paper or online bill.
  3. If you can provide a current meter read it will help, but the new supplier will read the meter anyway.
  4. There will be no interruption to your supply if you switch. Nor will there be any changes to your meter, wiring, pipework or connection. Most suppliers charge a security deposit if you have a credit meter and don't pay by direct debit or if you fail a credit check. This can range between £150 to £200 and is typically returned after 12 months or if you wish to switch supplier, unless bills are not paid fully or on time. 
  5. The new supplier will let you know when the switch has taken place.
  6. Your old supplier will send you a closing bill.

See our ‘Switch On’ guide for more information on switching or try out our online energy price comparison tool to see if you are getting the best deal:

Home Heating Oil

If you living in a house with oil heating, savings can be made by shopping around suppliers each time. Try not to rely on emergency drums as they cost considerably more.

Click HERE to see the cheapest oil prices!

See our ‘Switch On – Home Heating Oil’ for more information on home heating oil.

Current Account

There’s never been a better time to get your finances in order and decide whether you’re getting the best from your current bank account.  You can compare different banks and building societies by checking their websites directly, talking to your friends and family or using a price comparison website.

The new Switching Guarantee Service makes it quick and hassle free to switch current account. It takes seven working days and the new bank provider is responsible for automatically switching incoming and outgoing payments to the new account. All you need to do is contact the bank you wish to switch to, and it will do the rest.

See our Switching Bank Account Factsheet here.

Insurance

When it comes to looking for car, home contents or travel insurance, always shop around! If renewing your policy, don’t accept the first policy quoted. Remember to compare the cover each policy offers, not just the price.

You can shop around by going to an insurance broker, contacting providers directly or using price comparison websites.

See our useful guides:

Driving Down the Cost of Car Insurance
Home Contents Insurance – a guide for people who rent their home
Travel Insurance Factsheet

Transport

Consumers can also shop around for the best form of transport for their needs. Consumers should factor in all transport related costs when planning their journeys, including parking and fuel costs when deciding whether to drive or travel by public transport.

Visit Translink’s website www.translink.co.uk or call its Contact Centre on 028 9066 6630 for the latest fares, timetables and travel information. Also check the ‘What Ticket?’ function of Translink's website to get ideas on the best ticket for you.