Prepayment price cap

The Prepayment Meter Price Cap came into force on 1 April 2017. The cap is temporary, and applies to prepayment meter customers on a non-fixed deal and without an interoperable smart meter. Suppliers can price to the level of the cap or below it, but cannot charge more.

A separate price cap applies to customers on a standard variable or default energy tariff. See Default Tariff Price Cap.

For more information please see our default tariff cap and default tariff level pages.

When is the prepayment meter cap updated?

Ofgem adjusts the level of the cap twice a year – in February and August to apply in April and October respectively – to reflect the estimated costs of supplying electricity and gas to homes in the next six-month summer or winter period. 

The next price cap period begins on 1 October. We will reset the level of the cap on 7 February for the six-month summer price cap period which begins on 1 April.

Industry guidance on applying the prepayment price cap

When will the prepayment meter cap end?

The cap is due to end at the end of 2020. We will continue to monitor the energy market closely while the prepayment meter cap is in place and produce an annual report on the competitiveness of the energy market.

Background

  • The Prepayment Meter Price Cap came into force on 1 April 2017. In July 2019, the CMA revised the methodology, to better reflect the costs incurred in delivering energy services to prepayment customers. From 1 October 2019, the prepayment meter price cap methodology aligns more closely with our methodology for the default tariff price cap.
  • Implementation of the CMA remedies. Information on the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) investigation into the energy market and recommendations for Ofgem to act, including those relating to prepayment meters.

Further publications and outputs relating to the prepayment meter price cap can be found in the publications feed at the foot of this page.

Need help?

If you have technical or policy questions about the cap, please contact us at  PPM.PriceCap@ofgem.gov.uk

If you are an energy customer looking to find out your capped tariff price, please contact your energy supplier. You can find their contact information on an energy bill, or see Who is my energy supplier? You can also find answers to frequently asked questions on our consumer FAQ page, or see our energy price caps guide

Publications and updates

  • Published: 3rd Jul 2017
  • Open letters and correspondence
  • 1 Associated documents
Our letter to suppliers describing the key dates leading up to the second Charge Restriction Period for the prepayment price cap, due to take effect on 1 October 2017.

  • Published: 23rd Mar 2017
  • Decisions, Guidance
  • 2 Associated documents
Temporary directions issued pursuant to SLCs 28A.21 and 28A.22 of the electricity supply licence, and SLCs 28A.19 and 28A.20 of the gas supply licence.

  • Published: 7th Feb 2017
  • Charts and data, Reports and plans
  • 3 Associated documents
These tables set out the level of the prepayment price cap that will apply for the period 1 April 2017 to 30 September 2017.

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