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All About EDF (Electricité de France)

EDF (Electricité de France) is the historical and largest electricity supplier in France. Created in 1946, it was the only supplier for electricity for most of France for over five decades. However, with the deregulation of French energy markets, EDF now operates in competition with numerous alternate suppliers. Find out everything you need to know about EDF here, from how to sign up for an EDF account to how to find English-speaking customer service.

Tariff Bleu: the regulated tariff for electricity

The majority of French households purchase electricity from EDF at the regulated tariff (the Tarif Bleu), though it is not the cheapest offer on the market.

Name Subscription Charge Price per kWh Engagement
EDF Set by French public authorities Set by French public authorities None: possibility to cancel at any time without penalty
Total Direct Energie Same as regulated tariffs -5% discount off of the pre-tax regulated tariff amount None: possibility to cancel at any time without penalty

The Tarif Bleu is fixed by French public authorities (the Commission de Régulation de l'Energie - CRE - along with the ministers for economy and energy), and usually changes about once a year. Most of the time the Tarif Bleu increases when it is changed - over the past three years the regulated tariff increased by 5% in 2013, by 2.5% in 2014, and by 2.5% again in 2015.

Many alternate suppliers base their rates off of the pre-tax regulated tariffs, offering a discount. These discounts usually range from 5 - 10% lower than the regulated tariff, but depending on the supplier and the plan they can be as much as 20% lower than the regulated tariff.

There are in fact three different regulated tariff options available as part of the Tarif Bleu:

Option Base

With the Option Base, the price you pay for electricity stays the same throughout the year, regardless of the time of day or season. This option is best for small power consumers and those with few electrical appliances. While this option is simple, it is not the cheapest available on the market.

Name Subscription Charge Price per kWh Engagement
EDF Set by French public authorities Set by French public authorities None: possibility to cancel at any time without penalty
Total Direct Energie Same as regulated tariffs -5% discount off of the pre-tax regulated tariff amount None: possibility to cancel at any time without penalty

Option Creuse

With the Option Creuse (which might also be descibed as the tarif jour/nuit, or heures pleines-heures creuses), the price for electricity changes depending on the time of day. With this option you are charged two prices for electricity: a more expensive "on-peak" rate (charged during times of high usage), or a cheaper "off-peak" rate (charged when overall power needs are less - usually at night). The hours for on- and off-peak rates are set by the grid operator (not by the customer), and are location-specific (in French).

The Option Creuse is a good choice for high electricity consumers with a relatively flexible schedule (i.e. it might be good for you if you are able to wait until certain times before doing your laundry, cooking, etcetera).

Price comparison between Option Creuse and Option Base
Power Rating (kVA) Price difference for the annual prix de l’abonnement (subscription charge) between Option Creuse and Option Base Per kWh price difference between Option Creuse and Option Base
6  +9% Heures pleines (peak):
+ 10%  
Heures creuses (off-peak):
- 25%
9  +10%
12  +19%

Calculation based on regulated tariffs as of August 1st, 2013

If you are interested in EDF's Option Creuse you should also know that alternate suppliers also offer peak/off-peak options, which are often cheaper:

Price comparison between EDF's Option Creuse and Direct Energie's Offre Directe
  Annual subscription charge (in euros, taxes included) Per kWh rate (in cents, taxes included)
Power Rating (kVA) Total Direct Energie
Total Direct Energie Offre Directe

Tarifs réglementés
Total Direct Energie
Offre Directe
 Tarifs réglementés
6 137.20 138.60 Heures pleines (peak): 0.1777
Heures creuses (off-peak):  0.1302
Heures pleines (peak): 0.1853
Heures creuses (off-peak):  0.1353
9 150.17 152.04
12 174.28 176.64

Février 2021

Option Tempo

The Option Tempo is a rather complicated time-of-use rate, in which the price of electricity changes depending on the time of day as well as the day itself (and how high general electricity usage is that day). In other words, with Option Tempo you pay an on-peak and off-peak rate for electricity, but these rates are particularly high on some days (typically 22 days, spread out between the 1st of November until the 30th of March), slightly higher on others (43 days throughout the year), and lower throughout the rest of the year (300 days out of the year - including all Sundays). You can find out what kind of day it is on here (in French. This kind of rate is only worth it for high electricity consumers with a relatively flexible schedule.

The Option Tempo is a regulated tariff option, and no alternate suppliers offer anything similar. However, unless you a larger power consumer and are able to dramatically reduce your consumption on red days, a simple fixed rate or heures creuses option from an alternate supplier that guarantees savings compared to the regulated rates is a more affordable option.

Other Rate Options from EDF

EDF also sells a renewable electricity rate along with regulated tariffs, called the Offre Électricité Verte.

EDF's Offre Électricité Verte
Power Rating (kVA) Annual Subscription Charge (with taxes): Option Base kWh price (with taxes): Option Base Annual Subscription Charge (with taxes): Option Creuse kWh price (with taxes): Option Creuse (off-peak) kWh price (with taxes): Option Creuse (on-peak)
6 €127.92 €0.1607 €139.20 €0.1850 €0.1376
9 €152.64 €0.1646 €172.08 €0.1850 €0.1376
12 €177.48 €0.1646 €203.16 €0.1850 €0.1376
15 €201.48 €0.1646 €232.56 €0.1850 €0.1376
18 €226.08 €0.1646 €259.56 €0.1850 €0.1376
24 €279.60 €0.1646 €320.64 €0.1850 €0.1376
30 €335.76 €0.1646 €375.72 €0.1850 €0.1376
36 €377.16 €0.1646 €427.32 €0.1850 €0.1376

A competitive offer (i.e. not regulated), the Offre Électricité Verte guarantees 100% green electricity (sourced from renewable content - typically from hydroelectric and wind generation). However, several other suppliers offer 100% green energy at lower prices:

Comparison of EDF's Offre Électricite Verte with another green electricity offer
Name Per kWh price Option Base Per kWh price Options Creuse - peak Per kWh price Options Creuse - off-peak More information
EDF Offre Électricité Verte
€0.1607 €0.1850 €0.1376 Contact EDF
Total Direct Energie
Total Direct Energie Offre Verte
€0.1555 €0.1821 €0.1331 09 87 67 37 93 
Call me back
For comparison:
EDF Regulated Tariffs
€0.1582 €0.1853 €0.1353

Contact EDF

About EDF

EDF (Electricité de France) was created in 1946, the product of the nationalisation of about 1500 local distribution utilities (known as ELDs). This made EDF the main electricity generation, distribution and supply company in France, and it enjoyed a monopoly over much of France for over fifty years, until the French electricity market began to open to competition in the late 1990s as part of a wider European deregulation initiative. EDF was a state-owned corporation until 2004, when it became a limited-liability corporation under private law (in French, a Société Anonyme), though the French government still holds 84% ownership.

EDF Activities

EDF's activities cover the entire electricity service line, from generation to supply. The largest electricity producer in the world, EDF is responsible for 20% of Europe's electricity production, and 90% of electricity production in France. The company is a major producer of electricity from nuclear power (which represented approximately 75% of its total electricity production in 2012), and operates 78 nuclear reactors throughout the world (of which 58 are in France). However, EDF is also the largest hydroelectric generation producer in Europe, and hydroelectricity currently represents about 10% of EDF's total electricity production.

Did You Know?France's reliance on nuclear power is the main reason for why electricity is relatively cheap in France. Find out more about the cost of electricity in France in our guide.

EDF also owns the electricity transmission and distribution companies in France, which are RTE (Réseau de Transport d'Electricité) for power transmission and ERDF (Électricité Réseau Distribution France), now ENEDIS, for distribution. ENEDIS delivers electricity to all power consumers within its service area (95% of the French territory), regardless of their electricity supplier (Engie, Planète Oui, etc).

With over 28.6 million customers in France, EDF is by far the largest electricity supplier in the country. As EDF is the historical supplier for electricity, most French power consumers (especially residential customers) are still unaware that they have a choice of electricity supplier.

While deregulation has forced EDF to lose some of its customer base, it has also brought new opportunities for expansion into other markets, such as natural gas. EDF now sells natural gas supply and has become a direct competitor to the historical natural gas supplier, Engie.

EDF English-Speaking Customer Service

At the time of writing, EDF's English online customer service was still in the process of construction. However, EDF does operate an English-speaking customer service phone number, available at 09 69 36 63 83 (when calling from within France - +339 69 36 63 83 when calling from abroad). Press 1 for technical support, or press 2 for commercial support (to open an account, invoices, billing queries, line activation, changing personal details, and more).

This number is free when dialed from a French fixed phone line, but may be subject to long-distance charges when dialed from abroad.

Find more ways to reach EDF customer service

EDF's logo

How to Open an Account with EDF

When you move to a new home in France, you will likely need to set up electricity service. You may choose to open an account with EDF, or you can contact an alternate supplier directly to start service.

You can open an account for electricity with EDF over the phone, online, or in an EDF boutique. However, as EDF does not currently have much information in English, starting an account online may be complicated if you are not comfortable reading French. We recommend calling EDF or visiting one of their boutiques to open an account.

Compare EDF with other suppliers (in French)

EDF has an English-speaking customer service line at 09 69 36 63 83, and customer service is open from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Monday through Saturday. This number is free from a fixed telephone line in France, but you may have to pay long-distance charges if calling from abroad.

  • You need to have the following information in order to open an account with EDF for electricity
  • Your contact information: name, e-mail address, phone number
  • The address of your new accommodation. Don't forget the floor and apartment number if it is a flat (e.g. third floor, door on the left)
  • The name of the previous occupant
  • Your banking information (RIB) (IBAN and BIC, if you choose automatic payment)

Other Ways to Contact EDF

EDF Complaints

To make a complaint about service with EDF, call their English-speaking customer service phone number (09 69 36 63 83), or write a letter to the following address:

EDF Service Clients
TSA 20012
41975 Blois Cedex 09

You can also fill out a form online (in French). Find out more about making an energy complaint in our guide.

EDF Headquarters

EDF's logo
Siège social d'EDF
22-30, avenue de Wagram
75008 Paris

Bill Payment

You can pay your bill online in your personal space on the EDF website, or over the phone by calling 0 970 833 333. This number is free when dialed from a French landline.

EDF Customer Service Mailing Address

EDF Service Clients
TSA 20012
41975 Blois Cedex 09

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