Energy bill payment methods in Australia

Whether you are an expat who is in Australia or a native who is looking to understand more about payment methods in the country, then you are in the right place.

Australia’s banking system is dominated by the big four: National Australia Bank, ANZ, Commonwealth Bank and Westpac. Between these four banks is 84% of the credit card market, showing that these are the major players when it comes to payment methods.

In this article we are going to go through the various payment methods in Australia, as well as potential hurdles that you may be up against with them. Please note that these are the main payment methods detailed below, and more specific payment methods may not be available from all energy retailers.

  • Electronic Funds Transfer / Online Banking: The aforementioned NAB, Commonwealth Bank, ANZ and Westpac are one of the best bets to ensure smooth payment for debit or credit card payments. Getting yourself set up with one of the big four should mean plain sailing when it comes to payments. You can use them through the following mediums (for full list, check with your bank):
    • Debit transaction
    • Credit transaction
    • Tablets
    • Smartphones (Apple Pay)
    • Paypal
    • E-way
    • Stripe
    • Braintree
    • Paymate & many more
  • American Express: Although it may not be recognised with all energy companies in Australia, American Express is used and accepted in more commercial retailers. The reason why some may not accept American Express is due to the charges the retailer can incur. You are most likely better off using a debit or credit retailer that is an Australian based business to allow you to use it in more places.
  • Electronic bill payment services:  The two main options you will see are BPAY and Australia Post Bill Pay. These are two of the most common payment methods and details can be found on the back of your bill.
  • Direct Debit: For ease and convenience many customers set up a monthly direct debit to have a set amount deducted electronically each month from your bank account by your energy company.
  • Cheques: These are becoming scarce not just in Australia but globally. They are still a valid way of payment, just not the most popular.
  • Prepaid cards: These can sometimes fall into the ‘big four’ category along with other banks, but prepaid cards, sometimes referred to as ‘cash cards’ can be used for payments. These are seen more with people traveling in Australia as they may be in the country for a short period of time, and therefore may not need a bank card.
  • Digital banks: Online banks such as Monzo are accepted as payment methods as they are recognised by Mastercard and are a valid way of paying everything from a mortgage repayment to a flight to Europe. Digital banks are free of branches and are usually a lot more agile in terms of what they can offer to customers.

The brilliant thing about the majority of payment methods in Australia is that they are rich with brilliant technology, allowing customers to wire their money across multiple platforms in a matter of seconds.

Author: Claire Stapley
Claire Stapley is ElectricityComparison.com.au's Energy Editor, based in Melbourne Australia. Claire is a founding member of ElectricityComparison.com.au News and Energy Team.