Part of the same group as publicly-listed Sembcorp Industries (SGX:U96), Sembcorp Power is one of the biggest names in the open electricity market (OEM) in Singapore – one might even say they’re a real power player in the market.
They have a strong enough brand name to seem more reliable than the other electricity startups – and (possibly more importantly) enough muscle to bring us decent promotions.
If you’re trying to decide between Sembcorp Power vs other electricity retailers‘ plans, here’s a guide to help you make sense of the options.
1. Sembcorp Power Plans Review
Trying to choose a Sembcorp Power electricity plan used to be a huge pain in the ass because at the OEM’s peak in 2019, they had 12 different plans (including some very strange plans that aren’t widely offered by other retailers).
Fast forward to today, there are only 2 Sembcorp Power electricity plans left.
|Sembcorp Power Plan||Duration||Price|
|Sembcorp Fixed Price Plan||12 months||$0.2988/kWh|
|Sembcorp Sunshine Plan||12 months||$0.3388/kWh|
Sembcorp Power’s usual fixed price plan is priced at $0.2988/kWh for a contract duration of 12 months. The 100% solar energy Sembcorp Sunshine Plan is priced at $0.3388/kWh for 12 months.
2. Sembcorp Power Fees and Charges
Any hidden costs? Well, Sembcorp charges by the meter so there are no transmission loss charges, and carbon tax is included in their fees.
One of the key admin fees to take note about Sembcorp Power is the account closure request fee. That’s to say, if you intend to switch to another electricity retailer and want to end your subscription and close your account with Sembcorp, you actually need to pay $10.70 for it. Then, if you want to amend some information about your submitted account closure request, you need to pay another $10.70 to amend information. Why? How?! It definitely sounds dirty to us.
Here is a comprehensive table detailing Sembcorp Power’s fees and charges:
|Sembcorp Power Fees||Fee|
|Security Deposit||$50 to $200|
|Late Payment Charge||$5.35 per bill|
|Early Termination Charge||$10 to $200 x No. of remaining month|
|GIRO Payment Rejected||$1.07|
|Credit or Debit Card Payment Rejected||$5.35|
|AMI Meter Installation||$42.80|
|Special Meter Reading||$21.40|
|Account Closure Request||$10.70|
|Changes to Account Closure Request||$10.70|
Note that there’s a $1.07 per paper bill (e-bills are free), $1.07 for GIRO rejection, $5.35 for credit or debit card rejection, late payment charges of $5.35 per bill (that’s on you), and you also need to put down a security deposit of $50 to $200 depending on your property type.
With that out of the way, let’s jump into the electricity plans proper.
3. Sembcorp Power Plans: Fixed Price Plans
|Sembcorp Power plan||Contract duration||Price|
|Fixed Price Plan||12 months||$0.2988/kWh|
Okay, now we’re in familiar territory with the usual fixed price electricity plans. A fixed price plan is as simple as it sounds – the price, $0.2988/kWh with GST is locked in for the entire duration of 12 months.
Sembcorp Power used to offer a 24-month variation of the Fixed Price Plan, offering a cheaper rate for the longer commitment period. (We used to see them doing this with all their major plans in the past.) However, when taking up a 24-month plan, you will want to double and triple read up about early termination charges.
Bottom Line: At $0.2988 per kWh, Sembcorp’s 12 month Fixed Price Plan is slightly cheaper than SP Group’s current rate of $0.3017/kWh (July – September 2022). However, it’s not the cheapest electricity plan in the market. Geneco‘s Get It Fixed 24 and Senoko’s LifePower24 are currently going at $0.2880/kWh, while Pacific Light‘s Savvy Saver 24 is priced at $0.2968/kWh,
4. Sembcorp Power’s green electricity plan
|Sembcorp Power plan||Contract duration||Price|
|Sembcorp Sunshine Plan||12 months||$0.3388/kWh|
I didn’t really get what Sembcorp Power’s green electricity plan, Sunshine Plan was about at first. It seemed counterintuitive that you had to pay more for electricity usage under this plan.
Back in 2019, the Sunshine Plan was named this way because Sembcorp supplies electricity from solar energy from 7am to 7pm – that’s why the Sunshine Plan used to cost more in the day. When it’s dark, you used the same SP electricity as everyone else.
However, Sembcorp’s Sunshine Plan today is 100% solar
Sembcorp used to throw in free AMI meter and installation for this plan, but no longer offer that perk. Now, you’ll need to pay the pretty standard $42.80 AMI installation.
Plus, they also do solar panel installation if it’s an option for your household or business. This is at your own cost of course, but you will be able to get some savings.
Alternative “green energy” plans you can also look into include Sunseap‘s 100% solar electricity plan.
5. Sembcorp Power No Contract Plan (ceased)
|Sembcorp Power plan||Contract duration||Price per kWh|
|No Contract Plan||–||17.55¢ + 33¢/day fee|
In a bid to entice customers who were wary of signing up for a long contract, Sembcorp was one of the few electricity retailers to offer a no contract plan (only available through online sign up) in the past.
You had the freedom to switch to any other electricity retailer or even back to SP Group as long as you gave Sembcorp Power 14 days’ notice. But it goes both ways: Sembcorp Power could also suka-suka revise your rates anytime, although they would also had to inform you 14 days before the change.
The base rate for the No Contract Plan was actually lower than all their other plans, but you needed to pay an extra 33¢ per day to Sembcorp as an admin fee. That’s about $10 a month.
Assuming you live in a 4-room HDB flat and consume the average 360 kWh of electricity a month (hence 12 kWh a day), that worked out to about 2.75¢ on top of the 17.55¢ per kWh. So your effective rate is 20.3¢ per kWh, which was definitely on the high side for a fixed plan back then.
But because the daily fee remains the same no matter what size your house is, the bigger your house, the more worth it it gets.
However, Sembcorp charges incredibly high early termination fees.
While companies like Geneco charge a one-time fee of $50 to $220 (depending on property size) for early cancellation, Sembcorp charges $10 to $200 x no. of remaining months. For example, if you live in an 4-room HDB flat and cancel 12 months ahead of contract expiry, you will pay $30 x 12 = $360!
6. Sembcorp Power Discount Off Tariff Plans (ceased)
|Sembcorp Power plan||Contract duration||Price/kWh|
|Discount Off Tariff Plan||24 months||22.5% off tariff|
|Discount Off Tariff Plan||12 months||20.5% off tariff|
Next up, the former Sembcorp’s Discount Off Tariff (a.k.a. DOT) electricity plans. With discount off tariff plans, the price of electricity is pegged to the overall electricity tariff set by EMA every quarter (basically, what SP charges you for electricity).
Since this rate changes every 3 months, you can expect some fluctuation in your electricity bill. If the electricity tariff were to decrease, that will naturally make DOT electricity plans quite attractive. However, electricity tariffs are at an all time high now and is likely to continue increasing in the future – probably why electricity retailers like Sembcorp Power, Geneco, Tuas Power, Pacific Light, and Keppel Electric have all phased out their discount off tariff plans.
When considering a DOT plan, you don’t have to care what the current electricity price is. All you need to compare is the discount. Back in 2019, the best rates on the market are 23% to 25% discount, which were offered by Ohm, Diamond Electric, Sunseap, and ES Power. Gone were the days!
There are no discount off tariff electricity plans available on the Open Electricity Market right now.
7. Sembcorp Power Flat Fee Plans (ceased)
|Sembcorp Power plan||Contract duration||Price per month||Price per kWh|
|Flat Fee 450 kWh||24 months||$78.99 for 450 kWh||~17.55¢|
|Flat Fee 450 kWh||12 months||$82.99 for 450 kWh||~18.44¢|
|Flat Fee 600 kWh||24 months||$104.99 for 600 kWh||~17.50¢|
|Flat Fee 600 kWh||12 months||$109.99 for 600 kWh||~18.33¢|
|Flat Fee 900 kWh||24 months||$157.99 for 900 kWh||~17.55¢|
|Flat Fee 900 kWh||12 months||$163.99 for 900 kWh||~18.22¢|
In addition to the usual fixed rate, discount off tariff and green electricity plans – which are commonly offered by electricity retailers – Sembcorp Power also had “Flat Fee Plans”. Again, the Flat Fee Plans have since been phased out.
But what were Flat Fee plans, anyway? In case they were to make a comeback, here’s how they worked:
Instead of being billed according to your consumption, with a Flat Fee plan you pay a fixed amount for an electricity “bundle”, similar to how telco data subscriptions work.
You can use however much electricity as you like up to the bundle limit, after which you’ll have to pay for the excess at the rate of 10% discount off the regulated tariff. You do get a free AMI meter and installation bundled into the cost, which lets you (and Sembcorp) track your usage more accurately.
The cons of such a plan are immediately obvious – you don’t get any sort of incentive to reduce your electricity usage. Also, there’s not much you can do with the “excess” electricity at the end of the month, whereas with mobile data you can do on a YouTube binge. I mean, what are you gonna do – do your laundry 20 times?
The only way this type of plan would make sense is if you get a very deep discount in exchange for your commitment. However, in the table above, you can see for example how much you’ll be paying per kWh if you successfully max-ed out your bundle. To be honest, the savings weren’t exactly a lot.
8. Sembcorp Power Referral Code
Sembcorp Power’s referral programme is pretty simple and easy to understand. As a Sembcorp Power user, you will have a unique referral code to share with your friends.
When your friend signs up for Sembcorp Power, you get $20 off your Sembcorp bill, your new friend gets $20 off his/her Sembcorp bill too.
It’s a more fairTuas Power’s referral programme way to invite your colleague or friend to an electricity retailer without risking yourself looking or sounding like a cheapskate trying to earn from their referrals. (See here. It’s pretty intense.)
9. Sembcorp Power Promotions
If you’ve got your heart set on one of the Sembcorp Power plans, don’t sign up without one of these Sembcorp Power promotions. Make sure to read the T&Cs thoroughly though – different credit card companies require you to do different things to earn the rebates.
Out of all the electricity retailers, Sembcorp Power historically has the most comprehensive promotions programme. It can, however, get a little too confusing. Here, a summary table of Sembcorp Power’s ongoing promotions:
|Sembcorp promo code||Mechanics||Expiry|
|65AMEX12||$45 bill rebate when you use AMEX Card for recurring payment (12-month plans, 250 customers only)||30 Jun 22|
|SUNSHINEAMEX||$45 bill rebate when you use AMEX for recurring payment (12-month Sunshine plan, 250 customers only)||30 Jun 22|
|60CITI||$40 bill rebate when you use Citibank card for recurring payment (12-month plan, new online customers only)||31 Jul 22|
|60CITISUNSHINE||$40 bill rebate when you use Citibank card for recurring payment (12-month Sunshine plan, new online customers only)||31 Jul 22|
|50HSBC||$30 bill rebate when you use HSBC card for recurring payment (12-month plans)||30 Jun 22|
|SUNSHINEHSBC||$40 bill rebate when you use HSBC card for recurring payment (12-month Sunshine plan)||31 Dec 22|
|60OCBC12||$40 bill rebate when you use OCBC card for recurring payment (12-month plans)||30 Jun 22|
|–||3% cashback when you set up recurring bill payment with OCBC 365 Credit Card (min spend $800/month)||–|
|60UOB12||$20 bill rebate when you use UOB card for recurring payment (12-month plans)||30 Jun 22|
|60UOBSUNSHINE||$20 bill rebate when you use UOB card for recurring payment (12-month Sunshine plan)||30 Jun 22|
Have you signed up with an electricity retailer in Singapore? Share your experiences with us in the comments.