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  • Apr 24, 2024

  • 3 min read


How EV tariffs work for electric cars

Transitioning to an electric car also involves the transition away from filling up a tank with fossil fuels to charging your EV with electricity.

If you’re charging at home, you’re going to need to know a bit more about EV tariffs. So, we’ve written a guide on just that.

In this guide, we chat through:

Understanding EV tariffs

Let’s start with the basics. EV tariffs are essentially specialised energy plans for your EV. They often offer more cost-effective and environmentally friendly charging.

They work separately from your standard household energy plan. And some EV tariffs, like Intelligent Octopus Go, are smart. This means the charger, or car, will work with your energy provider to automatically charge your EV when prices are lowest - costing you less money to charge.

It's also important to know that EV tariffs will need a smart meter connection.

Do I need to inform my energy provider about my EV?

In most cases, unless you’re getting an EV-specific tariff, you won’t need to notify your energy provider about your EV.

However, if you’re looking for an EV tariff, you’ll need to chat with your energy supplier and see what they offer. It’s important to remember that not all EV tariffs work with all chargers or cars - check your supplier and the EV tariff they offer to see which chargers and cars they’re compatible with.

How much is an EV tariff?

EV tariffs can range in price, but because most have off-peak charging rates, they are mostly cheaper than standard energy tariffs.

By leveraging off-peak hours and/or using smart EV charging with smart EV tariffs (like Intelligent Octopus Go which starts at 7.5p per kW/h), you can save further on charging costs. For example, an average customer on Intelligent Octopus Go can save around £500 a year vs. Flexi.

Are EV tariffs good for the environment?

Some EV tariffs, such as Intelligent Octopus Go, prioritise sustainability and use 100% renewable energy sources to charge your EV, including solar, wind, and water. They’ll usually do this by charging overnight when wind power is high but grid use is low (you can read more about this balance in What is grid balancing?).

If you charge overnight using wind energy, you save that energy going to waste whistling proving there is also demand for good clean energy.

You can read more about EV tariffs and the environment in our blog: How to charge my EV with renewable energy.

Is switching to an EV tariff worth it?

In our opinion, absolutely. You can benefit from cheaper and greener energy, during off-peak periods. This reduces your costs (significantly compared to fuel) but also helps towards a cleaner environment.

On the right tariff, your driving can be as little as 2 - 3p per mile.

The down low on EV tariffs

EV tariffs help towards cost-effective and sustainable transport. With an EV tariff, you charge your car effectively and affordably, all while contributing to a greener future.

Want to find out more about charging? Head over to our guide to EV charging.