Cost of living: Why are petrol prices in Austria still so high?

Hayley Maguire
Hayley Maguire - [email protected]
Cost of living: Why are petrol prices in Austria still so high?
It is possible to find cheaper petrol places in Austria if you know where to look. (Photo by Engin Akyurt / Pexels)

As people set off on summer holidays, motorists are noticing a big difference in the price of petrol in neighbouring countries. Here’s why fuel is so expensive in Austria.


For anyone running a car right now, it will come as no surprise that fuel prices in Austria are currently higher than the EU average.

An analysis of data in the weekly oil bulletin by the European Commission shows that the cost of diesel in Austria is currently 5.7 percent higher than other EU states, and petrol (or Super, as it is known in Austria) is 5.1 percent more expensive.

This puts Austria as more expensive than the EU average for the first time in a decade when it comes to filling up a car.

The research was carried out by Der Standard and the prices analysed include all taxes and duties.

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: Why are fuel prices increasing faster in Austria than elsewhere in the EU?

Up until March of this year, fuel costs in Austria had remained affordable and the Alpine Republic was usually in the lower third of EU countries when it came to petrol and diesel prices. 

So what happened? And why are fuel prices in Austria now higher than other EU countries?


Price caps and a damaged oil refinery

According to the Der Standard report, the higher cost of fuel in Austria comes down to two elements: neighbouring countries introducing price caps or lowering taxes, and a damaged oil refinery in Lower Austria.

For example, the German government has temporarily lowered taxes on petrol and diesel, which means it now costs five to 15 percent less to fill up a tank in Germany than in Austria.

In Italy, the government recently extended a 30 cent discount on fuel for consumers, and in Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia there are price caps in place.

READ ALSO: ‘Be mindful of energy and food waste’: How to beat inflation in Austria

Then there was the accident at Austria’s Schwechat OMV oil refinery in June. The facility has since been operating under a limited capacity until it can be repaired in the autumn, which has further impacted Austrian fuel prices. 

At the time of writing, The Local checked fuel prices at petrol stations across the country via the ÖAMTC app.

In Vienna, at the Turmöl gas station on Margaratenstrasse, petrol was €1.984 a litre and diesel was €1.974.

Prices in Innsbruck at the Shell station on Brenner Strasse were €1.999 for diesel and petrol. And in Graz, fuel prices at the F. Leitner on Elisabethinergasse were €1.952 for both diesel and petrol.

To compare, petrol prices at Bavaria Petrol on Zehentbauernstrasse in Munich, Germany, were €1.749 and diesel was €1.959, according to the ADAC. In Berlin, it's even cheaper with petrol at STAR on Berliner Allee for €1.629 a litre and diesel at €1.819.


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