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Today in Austria: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Aaron Burnett
Aaron Burnett - [email protected]
Today in Austria: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
Cutting your energy consumption can lower your overall housing costs. Photo: Pixabay

Cutting back to save energy amidst heavy snow in the forecast, and other news from around Austria this Friday.


Most Austrian households cutting back on energy use to save costs

A recent Ernst & Young survey finds that 57 percent of households in Austria have seen their energy costs rise in the past year – and intend to use less this winter to help save costs.

Respondents also most commonly cut spending by eating out less and taking fewer vacations away due to price pressures. Many are spending less on fashion and shoes.

The number of people cutting back on groceries is a little bit less, but still significant – with around half watching what they put in their baskets at the supermarket.

88 percent are trying to cut energy costs, and 47 percent are looking to reduce heating use.

At the same time, energy prices have fallen again in 2023 over 2022 numbers – although some of these savings arrive at a delay for most customers.

READ ALSO: 29 ways to save money in Austria (but still have fun)


Vienna General Hospital opens Covid-19 test station

Vienna’s main hospital has opened a dedicated testing station for Covid-19 due to rising numbers.

Incoming patients aren’t required to submit to the test. But if someone does test positive, individual rooms are set aside for isolation.

Covid has ceased to be a notifiable disease in Austria, but numbers are still rising. (Photo by ALAIN JOCARD / AFP)

Rising numbers over the last few weeks have led some Austrian hospitals to warn that the country is heading for one of the highest Covid-19 waves ever.

READ ALSO: What are Austria’s new Covid and RSV vaccination recommendations?

Stricter requirements coming for new-builds in Vienna

A new amendment to Vienna’s building code puts in more climate-related requirements on new-builds in the capital.

Among the measures, all new buildings will need to be compatible with solar panels and renewable forms of heating other than gas are to be encouraged. The number of green spaces and trees also will see regulation, intended to boost green space.

If carsharing or e-charging stations are available, buildings will also be allowed fewer parking spaces than they are currently.

The amendment also passes recent pledges to tighten Airbnb rentals in the capital into law.

READ ALSO: Vienna tightens rules for Airbnb rentals

How good are Austrians at English?

How easy is it to get around in English in Austria? Turns out the locals are some of the best non-native speakers in the world. Read our breakdown of how they stack up.

REVEALED: Just how well do Austrians speak English?

Friday weather

Most of Austria is set for snow this weekend.

Snow is forecast to begin falling at around 1000m elevation. However, that’ll sink to 500m by Sunday, with lows below 0C likely leading to snow even in Vienna by the time the weekend draws to a close.

If you have any questions about life in Austria, ideas for articles or news tips for The Local, please get in touch with us at [email protected].


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