What is the $250 Power Saving Bonus?
The $250 Power Saving Bonus is a one-off $250 payment to provide direct support to vulnerable Victorian households experiencing energy bill stress due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The $250 Power Saving Bonus will be available to over 900,000 eligible Victorian households with at least one eligible concession cardholder. Eligible households can access the Power Saving Bonus by applying on this website or applying through a participating community organisation. The $250 Bonus will be available from 1 February 2021 to 31 January 2022 and will be limited to one payment per eligible household.
When can eligible households apply?
The $250 Power Saving Bonus program is now open. Eligible households can apply on this website or through a participating community organisation from 1 February 2021 until 31 January 2022.
Is there a limit on how many $250 Bonuses are available?
The $250 Power Saving Bonus program is now open. Eligible households can apply on the Victorian Energy Compare website or through a participating community organisation from 1 February 2021 until 31 January 2022. There is no limit or cap on the number of payments available for eligible households and applications will stay open to 31 January 2022, but only one payment is available to each household.
Can I apply for the $250 Bonus more than once?
No, only one Bonus is available per household.
Who is eligible for the $250 Power Saving Bonus?
To be eligible to apply for the $250 Power Saving Bonus, you must be able to meet the following eligibility requirements:
- You must be a Victorian residential energy consumer (i.e. have a residential electricity account).
- You must be receiving payments under one of the following concession programs:
- Centrelink Pensioner Concession
- JobSeeker, Youth Allowance, Austudy or Abstudy
- Department of Veterans Affairs Pensioner Concession
- Or hold a Department of Veterans Affairs Gold Card
Pension Concession Card holders who are not receiving payments, and Health Care Cards holders who are not receiving Youth Allowance, JobSeeker, Austudy or Abstudy payments, are not eligible.
How do I apply for the $250 Power Saving Bonus?
To apply for the $250 Power Saving Bonus, eligible households must apply on this website or through a participating community organisation from 1 February 2021 until 31 January 2022.
What support is available to help me submit my application?
If you are having trouble submitting an application, the following support options may be able to help.
- Email: You can email the support team and they can help you navigate the online application process. They can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Friends and family members: If someone you know has a computer with the internet, ask if you can visit them and use it to access Victorian Energy Compare.
- Online: You can get help in real time by using the Victorian Energy Compare website live chat function.
- Phone support: You can call 1800 000 VEC (832) to receive general support and assistance with the Victorian Energy Compare website and Power Saving Bonus program. If you don't have internet or computer access, the helpline will also support you to submit an application over the phone.
Alternatively, you can call one of the community organisations the Victorian Government has partnered with through the Power Saving Bonus Community Outreach Program. The partners in that program which can also support you to submit an application over the phone include:
- In-person support: The Power Saving Bonus Community Outreach Program also provides face-to-face support to some community members. The partners in that program which provide in-person support include:
- Neighbourhood House - you can drop into a local Neighbourhood House centre for more information or call 1300 026 500 to find the closest Neighbourhood House that is currently offering support.
- Consumer Policy Research Centre and Council of the Ageing are delivering workshops to support households over 65 years of age. Call COTA on 1300 135 090 to get more details on the locations.
- Ethnic Community Council Victoria are hosting a series of in-person events, call 9354 9555 to get more details.
Visit the Community Outreach page for more information on the range of support available to assist you to apply for the $250 Bonus.
What can I do to make the application process as easy as possible?
When you visit the website to submit your application, there are a few things you need to make the application process as easy as possible, including:
- Making sure you have a copy of a recent electricity bill
- Making sure you know your 'NMI' number (this is can be located on your bill and is typically a 10 or 11 digit number)
- Making sure you know the card number for your Pensioner Concession Card or Health Care Card (for JobSeekers, Youth Allowance, Austudy and Abstudy recipients)
- Making sure you keep a copy of your application reference number and your NMI as you may need it for further communications about your application.
How long will it take before I receive further information about the status of my application?
You should receive an update on your application within 10 business days of submission. Approved applications will be asked to provide their payment details.
How long does it take to receive the $250 Power Saving Bonus?
You should receive your $250 payment via Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT) within 2-3 weeks of submission if you meet the eligibility and documentation requirements. Cheque payments will take a little longer to process but should be received within 4 weeks if you meet the eligibility and documentation requirements. Incomplete applications may take longer to process and pay.
How will the $250 Power Saving Bonus be paid?
The $250 Power Saving Bonus will be paid via EFT or by cheque upon request.
Can I receive my payment by cheque instead of EFT?
Yes. When you submit your application online, you will be able to choose between receiving your payment via EFT or cheque. If you choose EFT you should receive your $250 payment within 5 business days of receiving email confirmation. If you choose cheque you should receive your $250 payment within 4 weeks of receiving email confirmation. If you have submitted your application details already but would like to change your payment method, you should email email@example.com.
What will you do with the concession card details I provide?
Information you provide about your concession card will only be used for the purpose of assessing your Power Saving Bonus application. As part of that assessment, DELWP will be sharing your concession card details with Centrelink/Services Australia for the purpose of validating the information you have provided. Your use of Victorian Energy Compare and the Power Saving Bonus is governed by the Victorian Energy Compare website's privacy statement, which is located at https://compare.energy.vic.gov.au/privacy.
I want to submit an enquiry.
All enquiries can be submitted to the support team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I want to provide feedback.
Victorian Energy Compare values feedback. If you wish to provide feedback please use the form located at https://compare.energy.vic.gov.au/feedback.