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COST OF LIVING

EXPLAINED: How to claim your €200 voucher for electronics repair in Austria

The first phase for the nationwide repair bonus scheme has started, and shops can already sign up to be a part of the program

A wide range of electronic devices can be repaired with Austria's 200 euro bonus. Photo: Kenny Leys on Unsplash
A wide range of electronic devices can be repaired with Austria's 200 euro bonus. Photo: Kenny Leys on Unsplash

Austrian residents will be able to use a voucher to cover up to €200 of costs of the repair of electrical and electronic equipment with a participating company.

This week, the Climate Protection Ministry program started receiving applications from repair companies that want to be partners of the initiative. They can sign up at the www.reparaturbonus.at website, where Austrian residents will soon be able to download the vouchers. 

The federal funding campaign uses €60m in resources from the first tranche of a European Union financing program to promote a more sustainable use of resources, according to the Ministry. A total of €130m is available until 2026.

Private individuals residing in Austria will be able to go on the website, apply for the bonus and receive a voucher to partially cover the costs of the repair of several electronic devices and household appliances.

The bonus will cover up to 50 percent of the gross costs, to a maximum of € 200 per receipt. The private individuals will have to pay the difference through an invoice and partner businesses can receive a refund for the remaining amount. 

READ MORE: Repair bonus: How to get money back when electrical items break in Austria

When can I get the voucher as a customer?

Customers will be able to apply for the vouchers, which will contain unique QR codes and numerical codes,  from April, according to Kurier.

The first stage is already in place, with companies now applying to be partners in the scheme. 

What does the voucher cover?

Funding is provided for the repair (or cost estimate for repair) of almost all electrical and electronic equipment usually used in private households. This includes coffee machines, kettles, washing machines, hair dryers, TVs, smartphones, notebooks, e-bikes, cleaners and more. 

The devices must be privately owned by the applicants and cannot be borrowed or rented. 

The bonus also covers repairs to non-electronic components of equipment, such as a defective wheel of a vacuum cleaner, for example. The list of devices that are not covered is short, and includes weapons, for example. 

Cost of living: 45 ways to save money in Austria

How long do I have to redeem the voucher?

After you apply for the voucher online, it has to be redeemed (digitally or in a printed version) within three weeks. After that period, the voucher expires and you need to apply for a new one. 

The program itself lasts until the end of 2026, or until all funds have been used.

Can I get more than one voucher?

Yes, but not at the same time. You can request one voucher per device at the website. As soon as the voucher has been redeemed (or expired), customers can apply for another bonus to use with another electrical or electronic device. 

There is no limit on the number of redeemed vouchers by person or household, so you could have several pieces of equipment repaired consecutively. The bonus can be applied for as long as budget funds are available. 

How do I know the voucher has been redeemed?

The value of the repair bonus has to show up in the invoice as a deduction amount. So once you pay the difference between the invoice (including VAT) and the bonus, the voucher has been redeemed.

UPDATED: How to save money on fuel costs in Austria

Wait, wasn’t there something like this already in place?

Kind of. It is currently offered in a few of Austria’s regions, but not all. 

Repair bonus schemes are currently active in Salzburg, Carinthia, Vienna and the City of Graz. They have previously also been offered in the rest of the Styria region as well as Upper Austria and Lower Austria, but those regions have now stopped the bonuses.

All these schemes allow consumers to receive 50 percent of the costs of repairs up to a maximum of € 100, although you generally have to pay the full amount upfront and apply for reimbursement.

The regional schemes will be replaced by the federal one once it’s fully up and running. 

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For members

LIVING IN AUSTRIA

How much do you need to earn for a good life in Austria?

Austria is known as a country with a high standard of living, but it also comes with a high cost of living. Here’s an overview of what you can expect to earn in Austria.

How much do you need to earn for a good life in Austria?

As with most things in Austria, the question of ‘what is a good salary?’ is difficult to answer as the cost of living (and wages) can vary between states and cities.

For example, the east of Austria is typically much cheaper than the west for housing (with the exception of Vienna). And those living in cities often have easier – and cheaper – access to public transport when compared with people living in rural areas. 

READ ALSO: ‘Bad-tempered locals’: Vienna ranked the world’s ‘unfriendliest city’

Childcare is also something to consider with huge differences between Vienna, where there is access to heavily subsidised services, and places like Tyrol where childcare costs more.

To delve a bit deeper, we looked at the data to find out the average salary in Austria and how it differs between professions and locations.

What is the average salary in Austria?

In 2021, the average gross annual salary in Austria was €44,395, according to the latest data from Statistics Austria

However, in the latest survey by online job platform Step Stone, the average gross annual salary in Austria is €49,609.

The Step Stone survey then broke it down further by industry with those working in pharma earning the most at €60,504. This was followed by energy at €60,345, medical technology at €59,106 and banking at €58,711.

The industry with the lowest average annual salary is hotels/gastronomy at €37,546, followed by agriculture at €39,779 and tourism at €43,965.

FOR MEMBERS: REVEALED: The best and worst districts to live in Vienna (as voted for by you)

Occupation also plays a part with people working in management earning the most – on average €66,768. Consulting came second at €53,721.

And like many other European countries, the gender pay gap in Austria prevails. The average annual salary for a man is €52,633 and for a woman it is €44,330.

Furthermore, the top earning city in Austria is Bregenz in Vorarlberg with an average annual salary of €54,620. When comparing the west of Austria with the east, the median salary in Vorarlberg is €46,450, whereas in Burgenland it is just €39,100.

What is the average cost of living in Austria?

Many international residents will find everyday living costs in Austria to be expensive, especially for those that come from countries with a much lower cost of living.

Inflation has also been rising steadily in Austria throughout 2022, leading to some steep rises in prices for groceries, housing costs and energy.

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: 10 ways to save money on your groceries in Austria

However, the average cost of living varies across the country, depending on the location. For example, Vienna and Innsbruck in Tyrol are two of Austria’s most expensive cities, but more affordable places to live are Graz in Styria and Klagenfurt in Carinthia.

In Vienna, the average price for a one bedroom apartment in the city centre is €915, going up to €2,000 for a three bedroom apartment, according to Expat Arrivals.

Whereas in Graz, the average cost of a one bedroom city centre apartment is around €609, and a three bedroom apartment is €1,170.

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