Many propane suppliers offer a variety of propane service programs that include propane discounts. The following includes a list of some of the more common programs that result in propane discounts:
Active Military Personnel – This type of program involves a discount to families with an immediate family member active in the military. In most cases, the propane price per gallon involves a discount off of the ‘propane suppliers current propane price per gallon’. See the note at the bottom of this page around a warning around propane discounts based on the ‘current propane price per gallon’.
Senior Discount – This type of discount is offered for customers that are beyond a certain age. Propane consumers should be mindful that the senior age to be qualified for this type of program can vary significantly between suppliers. We have learned about senior programs that apply to those 50 year and over, 55 years and over, 62 years and over and 65 years and older. If you are already a customer of a respected propane supplier, be sure to stay informed of the suppliers eligible age for senior propane discounts as you approach a specific age – as the supplier may change it at some point in the future. It could be rather frustrating to have a supplier attract your business by indicating that you are a discount eligible senior at age 55, then find that the supplier may have changed that age to 65 after you are a customer for several years. However, if the supplier decides to change the eligible age propane discounts from the 65 to 55, that may be welcome news for another group of customers with the same supplier. It also makes sense to find out if other local propane suppliers consider a senior discount age 55 for example, then ask the supplier to match the same program for your account.
Automatic Delivery Discount – This program sounds attractive on the surface. However, propane consumers should be careful when authorizing any propane supplier to make automatic propane deliveries BEFORE being informed of the EXACT propane price per gallon for the pending delivery. Accepting propane deliveries WITHOUT knowledge of the exact propane price per gallon before each delivery can make a customer vulnerable to overpaying for propane. See our Frequently Asked Propane Pricing Questions Page for further discussion around automatic propane deliveries and possible propane price gouging.
Recommendation: Propane consumers should consider accepting automatic propane deliveries only if the customer has been informed of the exact propane price per gallon and compared it versus other local supplier propane pricing BEFORE accepting the pending delivery (the only exception is cases where a consumer has a fixed propane price program in place at the time of delivery). With knowledge of the exact propane price per gallon, the consumer simply conducts a local propane price survey via telephone among other local suppliers before the pending delivery arrives. This system is recommended for propane consumers to confirm that the propane price per gallon for the pending delivery is clearly competitive before accepting the delivery.
Automatic Payment Program – This type of program involves a propane supplier arranging automatic electronic payment following each of your propane deliveries. Propane consumers should be very careful when signing-up for this type of program. The possible problem with automatic propane payment is that a customer may have automatically paid for a propane delivery at a propane price per gallon that the customer later decides to dispute. Note: In the case where a propane customer is on automatic propane delivery (the program described above) and automatic propane payment (this program), propane consumers may be in a situation where they are accepting propane deliveries without knowing the propane price per gallon, then making automatic propane payments for a delivery when they had no idea of the propane price per gallon. It is very possible that a propane supplier may be less willing to discuss and adjust the propane price per gallon AFTER a propane delivery if the customer has already paid for the delivery through an automatic propane payment plan. The only case where a propane consumer may wish to take advantage of these types of programs is when the propane consumer has a contract propane price at a fixed propane price (i.e. propane pre-buy).
Fast Pay Discount – Some propane suppliers offer a discount to propane customers that pay their balance in full for a recent propane delivery within a relatively fast period. This period may be 10 days or 14 days, for example. This can be a very good way to save money assuming that a propane customer has double checked his or her propane price per gallon BEFORE each delivery and does not dispute the propane price or balance due on the invoice for the recent delivery.
Propane Discount Warning: Many of the programs described above involve a propane supplier discounting the customers propane price per gallon by 1 cent per gallon, 2 cents per gallon, 5 cents per gallon off of the regular propane price per gallon (examples only). An unethical propane supplier that offers a discount of X cents per gallon off the ‘regular propane price per gallon’ that is not openly posted on the suppliers website can cause propane customer frustration. The best way to view and confirm that you are indeed receiving a propane price per gallon is for the propane supplier to openly post the current propane price (or prices per gallon if based on annual volume or other pricing structure, etc.) and openly post the discount amounts (Military, Senior, etc.) in the next column. This type of propane pricing transparency helps all propane customers see their current propane price per gallon and the corresponding propane discounts for any applicable discount programs. If your supplier does not openly post current propane pricing, contact your supplier and request that it consider starting openly posting current propane pricing.
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