There are several concerns associated with the use of chlorine for potable water disinfection. These are the resistance of certain pathogens, the formation of toxic disinfection by-products and the adverse effects on aesthetic water quality. Owing to these concerns the water industry is continually reviewing alternative disinfection technologies. A methodology has been devised that will aid the water industry in evaluating the potential of these technologies. The methodology uses seven criteria to evaluate the technologies, these are: inactivation efficiency, disinfection by-product (DBP) formation, toxicity, aesthetic water quality, cost, scalability and residual maintenance. Each criterion is assessed by associated questions in order of importance in accordance with a protocol. The criteria are evaluated using UK water quality regulations as standards. Ultraviolet (UV) disinfection was used as an example to demonstrate the methodology. UV was shown to meet all the criteria apart from the provision of a residual disinfectant. Several other disinfection technologies were evaluated using the methodology. Direct electrochemical disinfection and mixed oxidant generators were identified as having the most potential for replacing chlorination.