British Gas vs SSE
Read our comparison of the UK's two biggest energy suppliers.
British Gas and SSE are established giants in the UK domestic energy supply market. They formed part of what was once known as the “Big Six” group of large energy suppliers that used to dominate the market, alongside EDF Energy, E.ON, Npower and Scottish Power.
SSE, formerly known as Scottish and Southern Energy, sold its household energy supply business to rival OVO Energy in January 2020. The supplier still trades under the name SSE, but its customers will gradually have their supply moved over to OVO Energy as part of the sale.
Both firms not only supply energy, but they also sell a broad range of services to household customers, including boiler cover and smart meter installation. British Gas also sells a selection of smart home products, while SSE offers home broadband services alongside energy supply.
If you want to compare a wider variety of suppliers based on where you live and what you need, just enter your postcode via the “Compare energy” button below to see if you’re currently overpaying. You could save hundreds of pounds!
British Gas vs SSE: Vital statistics
|Manage account via app|
|Can offer Warm Home Discount|
|Percentage renewables (electricity)||76%||52%|
Which is cheaper?
This will heavily depend on your tariff, location and usage, but it’s fair to say that neither of these is likely to be the cheapest option available. Large legacy suppliers tend to charge more for energy than smaller “challenger” brands.
While both companies offer some competitive benefits, both firms’ customers are also liable to face price rises in future, as market regulator Ofgem is increasing the energy price cap, giving energy firms the green light to increase their prices from October 2021. This is likely to hit both “default” variable tariffs and fixes over the coming months. The best way to find out which is better value for you is to run an energy comparison, using a postcode checker like the one on Uswitch's comparison service.
- Winner: It depends
Which has better customer service?
|Manage account via app|
|Manage account by telephone|
|Live chat support available|
|Email support available|
Users of the customer review website Trustpilot have given SSE a better average score than British Gas. The site gives SSE 4.4 stars out of 5, based on over 23,800 customer reviews, while British Gas received a score of 3 stars out of 5, based on over 65,400 customer reviews (last checked September 2021).
- Winner: SSE
Which offers more tariff options?
While some people like their provider to offer a range of tariffs, there are good suppliers that offer one type of tariff really well, so it’s worth considering a range of providers.
Both suppliers offer fixed tariffs that charge exit fees and those that don’t. If a British Gas customer wishes to leave a fixed tariff early and is subject to an exit fee, they will typically need to pay either £30 or £40 per fuel to be released from their deal. SSE customers who want to be released from a fixed tariff that charges exit fees will need to pay £75 per fuel.
It’s worth noting that as it’s essentially in the process of moving its customers over to the OVO Energy brand, SSE encourages potential new customers to check if OVO Energy can offer them cheaper energy deals.
These two giants offer broadly the same range of energy tariffs, but the choice offered by British Gas is slightly more comprehensive.
- Winner: British Gas
Verdict: Is British Gas better than SSE?
While neither firm is likely to be the cheapest in your area, it looks like SSE beats out British Gas by having the greater proportion of satisfied customers, according to customer reviews. In most other areas, the two firms are broadly similar in what they provide their customers. But while price is likely to be a key factor in helping potential customers decide to make the switch, customer service is also a major decider – that’s why the crown goes to SSE this time.
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Read our full comparison of two of the UK’s biggest energy providers, including prices, tariffs, exit fees, green credentials and customer satisfaction information.
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