Everything that changes in Austria in April 2024

Amanda Previdelli
Amanda Previdelli - [email protected]
Everything that changes in Austria in April 2024
Spring is beautiful in Austria. Pictured is the Volksgarten, Vienna, Austria (Photo by Yevheniia on Unsplash)

From cheaper energy bills for some customers to more expensive cigarettes and changes in the transport sector, here's what's coming up in Austria in April 2024.


Public holiday 

The month starts with a holiday, as Easter Monday this year falls on April 1st. Most shops and supermarkets will be closed—and they are also closed on the previous Sunday as always, so plan ahead.

Electricity and gas will be cheaper for Wien Energie consumers

Wien Energie has unveiled plans to lower electricity and gas prices for new customers and those switching contracts, effective April 1st. The move comes as the company aims to provide more competitive pricing options in the energy market.

Under the new pricing structure, the “Optima Entspannt” electricity tariff, which includes discounts, will decrease to approximately 14.9 cents net (around 18.9 cents gross) per kilowatt-hour. Similarly, the “Optima Aktiv” floating electricity tariff, adjusted monthly according to market trends, is expected to drop to around 7.3 cents net in April.

In addition to electricity, Wien Energie has announced reductions in gas prices. The “Optima Entspannt” gas tariff, featuring a one-year price guarantee, is anticipated to decrease by approximately 25 percent, while the “Optima Aktive” floating gas tariff will remain unchanged. Final prices will be determined by the end of March based on relevant indices.

Existing customers on older tariffs, such as night-time electricity, can expect significant price reductions starting April 1st. Wien Energie plans to lower prices by over 30 percent for around 30,000 electricity customers and approximately 57 percent for roughly 1,400 gas customers enrolled in old contracts.

Furthermore, the cost of charging electric vehicles is set to decrease, with consumption-based tariffs expected to drop by about 10 percent at the beginning of April. This move aims to encourage the adoption of electric vehicles and support sustainable transportation solutions.

READ ALSO: How to save money on energy bills in Austria


Tax return deadlines (paper forms)

If you must submit an annual tax return (also called the ANV or “Arbeitnehmerveranlagung”) and plan on doing it in paper format, your deadline is April 30th, 2024, for your income in 2023. If you are submitting your return electronically (via FinanzOnline), the deadline is June 30th of the following year. For 2023, that is June 30th, 2024.

However, there are different deadlines for those filing through a tax advisor.

READ ALSO: What are the 2024 deadlines in Austria to submit my tax return?


New trains operating in ÖBB routes

ÖBB (Austrian Federal Railways) has taken steps to enhance its rail service by ordering 19 additional Railjets following issues encountered last winter.

Starting April 8th, 2024, the first of these new trains will operate on routes such as Munich-Innsbruck-Bolzano, Verona-Bologna, and Munich-Innsbruck. ÖBB promises passengers a superior travel experience with upgraded amenities, including multi-adjustable seats with increased privacy, additional storage options, integrated charging stations, and improved signage for easier navigation.

The revamped Railjets also cater to diverse passenger needs, with provisions for cyclists, wheelchair users, and those seeking barrier-free travel. First Class and Business Class cabins offer premium furnishings with leather and real wood accents, while the train restaurant provides a comfortable space for dining and relaxation.

READ ALSO: Every 18-year-old in Austria to get free KlimaTicket


Lufthansa cancels flights from Innsbruck to Frankfurt

Starting April 1st, 2024, Innsbruck Airport will no longer have flights to Frankfurt because Lufthansa, whose subsidiary Air Dolomiti operates the route, has scheduled maintenance for its Airbus A320Neo aircraft. 

The safety maintenance is estimated to take up to 300 days per aircraft, affecting around 20 planes in the Lufthansa fleet.

Expressing regret over the sudden cancellation, Marco Pernetta, Managing Director of Innsbruck Airport, highlighted the loss of the vital connection to the Frankfurt hub. 

Last year, this connection served around 135,000 passengers. 

READ ALSO: What direct flights can I get from regional airports in Austria?


Innsbruck elections

The capital of Tyrol is electing a new municipal council and, separately, a new mayor on April 15th. The centre-right ÖVP and Liste Für Innsbruck parties have agreed on a joint candidate, Florian Tursky from the ÖVP, to go against incumbent Georg Willi (Greens). Other candidates are Johannes Anzengruber (JA), Markus Lassenberger (FPÖ), Elisabeth Mayr (SPÖ), Julia Seidl (Neos), Pia Tomedi (KPÖ).

EU citizens can also vote in these elections.

READ ALSO: How do Austrians elect their chancellor?


Relief for real estate buyers

With effect from April 1st, the fee for entry in the land register and the registration of liens for private real estate purchases up to a value of €500,000 will no longer be necessary, as announced by the Association of the Real Estate Industry in the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber (WKÖ) earlier in March.

The chamber explained that this exemption from fees could save property buyers up to €11,500. This measure is part of a package to promote housing construction and the construction industry, which the government put together to revive the ailing construction and real estate industry. 

The exemption only applies to purchasing a property to create a primary residence and is limited to two years. It expires on June 30th, 2026. Properties that have been inherited or donated are exempt.

READ ALSO: How Austria's new plans to avoid a housing crisis will affect residents


Cigarettes to become more expensive

As Austria's annual tobacco tax hike takes effect on April 1st, cigarette prices across the country are on the rise, as reported by The magazine describes the price hikes as a "shock for smokers," highlighting the additional costs they will incur.

Several brands, including those from the Japanese tobacco company Japan Tobacco International (JTI), have already raised their prices. Since the beginning of March, packs of Benson & Hedges, Camel, Meine Sorte, and Smart Export have seen a 20-cent increase in Austria.

Following suit, other brands will also adjust their prices in response to the tax increase. Starting April 2nd, smokers expect to pay an additional 20 cents per pack for Marlboro, L&M, Chesterfield, and Philip Morris brands from industry giant Philip Morris, as reported by This increase also applies to Heets tobacco sticks used in tobacco heaters.

While 20 cents may not seem significant at first glance, the cumulative effect over time can be substantial, the report highlights. For instance, a daily pack of Marlboro, now priced at €6.50 instead of €6.30, amounts to a total expenditure of €2,372.50 in a year, which is €73 more than before.


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