why is my first payment coming off the day my supply is due to start, before I've used any fuel?

I am a new customer and my supply is due to start on the 5th of December. I have just had a message to say the first payment will be taken from my bank account on that day (5th Dec.). It has never been mentioned in any previous communication that this would be a prepayment account so why is this amount (£217) being taken before I have even used any fuel? I am also disappointed that I received this message during the weekend, when I am unable to speak to anyone or make any arrangements to accommodate this before the payment is taken from my bank account.

Hi Christine,

We take payments in advance so that we can buy your energy sooner and get a better price for it. This is partly why our prices are so competitive, as it lets us pass the saving on to you. I’m sorry that this is a surprise to you. We mention it in the welcome pack and try to make it clear on our website when you join that this is the case.

It sounds like we could be clearer though, and you make a good point about when we send the payment reminder. We’ll have a think about how we can improve the timing of this so that other members don’t have the same problem.

All the best,