Shopping at the Co-op

I switched energy providers the other week, I buy my gas and electricity from the Co-op now and I urgently urge you good folks to do the same, not because they are cheaper or anything but because if they can get 10,000 customers then they can start buying their product properly instead of having to shop around for it every day.

It came as a whim did this desire to switch energy providers, like many people I had just stuck with the British Gas duel fuel tariff for ages because I couldn’t be arsed and they are all pretty much robbing bastards anyway but then I read of someone who had just signed up with Co-op Energy and it was one of those “huh, who?” moments.

I like the idea of the Co-op, its an old Victorian ideal, the ideal that says that if lots of people gather together and buy stuff then they can buy that stuff cheaper and sell that stuff cheaper to each other and then the profits that come from selling that stuff can be shared out between themselves, if the whole world had adopted the Co-op principle 150 years ago then there would be no Starbucks or McDonalds today – you decide whether thats a good thing or not.

And of course these days the Co-op (or the various organisations that go under the Co-op banner) seem to carry an ethos of being “good”, the Co-op bank won’t invest in anything that sounds slightly dodgy for instance, so your pension fund won’t be earning money while simultaneously polluting whole countries in the Far East, and Co-op Energy follows that principle in trying its best to source their electricity from “greener” producers, wind farms, water generated and, pause for dramatic effect, nuclear power…

So thats nice isn’t it ?

British Gas rang me at home the other day.

It was very likely their “Revenue Protection” team, or the people who ring you to try and persuade you to stay with them, but I wasn’t at home and they haven’t rung back yet, which is a shame because I had one really good question to put to them, it goes something like this, “At what point during the past four years of me doing business with you did you decide to move me from the very cheap Click Energy 5 tariff and put me on the very expensive Standard Tariff ?”, and then throw in for good measure, “…and did you ever tell me ?”

For thats exactly what they did.

I did the price comparison thingy on the Co-op Energy web site using the British Gas Click Energy 5 tariff as the comparison, and Co-op Energy came out more expensive and even though they tried to convince me that they were just nicer people than British Gas I was unwavered, then I went and looked at a recent British Gas bill and found myself wondering why I was now on the Standard Tariff and why and when had that happened ?

Compared to the Standard tariff the Co-op are far, far cheaper, and probably every other provider is too, so I switched, and now I await the phone call from a British Gas representative, they may be disappointed though, for I go on holiday in a few short days time and when I return their 30 day period for consultation will be over.

Goodbye British Gas and your conniving ways, hello the Co-op.

I get a divvy number and everything …


2 thoughts on “Shopping at the Co-op

  1. We have our bank and mortgage with the co-op, and the ethical angle pleases us also. Plus the divvy on it can be quite substantial.

    We,ve been considering moving energy provider. Hmmmm.

  2. Npower put up the daily standard charges by 60% without telling me. They encourage us to use less fuel but the charge you 39 p electricity and 58p gas a day even if you use nothing. the coop charge 17p a day for each. They have not increased this with their NOV increases, they have only increased the unit price of fuel. My monthly DD of £94 with Npower has come down to £64 with the Coop and I have a divi number

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