PPL Electric Utilities reports an increasing number of its customers have now chosen to receive power supply from competing alternative suppliers, showing that it's OK to switch, and that choosing a lower energy rate doesn't affect your reliability or service quality.

Through October, more than 605,000 customers at PPL have chosen a competing electric supplier for their electric supply.

That's more than 43 percent of PPL Electric Utilities' 1.4 million customers, including even greater shares of small businesses and virtually all large commercial and industrial accounts.

The number of customers who shop for a lower electric rate at PPL has gown since electric rate caps came off at the end of 2009, and more and more customers have realized the savings that are available by shopping for a lower-cost energy supplier.

The number of customers in all rate classes who have switched to alternative suppliers has risen from about 200,000 in January 2010 to 605,000 as of the start of November.

Competitive electric generation suppliers now supply more than 81 percent of all electricity delivered by PPL.

"It's a sign that more people are taking greater control over what they spend for electricity," Dennis Urban, senior director of Rates & Regulatory Affairs for PPL Electric Utilities, said in a recent news release.  "The growth in customers shopping for electricity indicates the competitive market provides options for consumers and the ability to save on their utility costs."

"As we head into one of the busiest shopping seasons of the year and scout for the best deals, it's also good to take some time to look at the offers available for generation supply," Urban said.

"When our customers choose an alternative suppler, it doesn't mean they cut ties to PPL Electric Utilities," Urban said. "We've heard many times that our customers are loyal and hesitant to switch. We value that loyalty, but we want our customers to know that choosing an alternative supplier doesn't hurt PPL Electric Utilities when they make a switch."

"Our business is delivering power, safely and reliably, and we're still your delivery company, even if you choose another supplier," Urban explained

Residential customers at PPL can find savings of up to 15% by shopping for a low electric rate, and savings for business customers are even higher, upwards of 30-40%.