Saarland: Electricity in the country more expensive than in the city

Electricity is significantly more expensive for private households in rural areas in Saarland than in the city. According to calculations by the comparison and placement portal Check24, the residents of rural regions have to pay two percent more for their electricity on average in Germany. With an annual consumption of 4250 kilowatt hours, that makes a difference of around 21 euros. In Saarland, the difference is 113 euros.

Among the federal states, only Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania has a higher value, where households in the countryside pay an average of 121 euros more than in the city. "The price of electricity is often higher in the country than in the city because the network usage fees are distributed among fewer people due to the lower population density," said Steffen Suttner, Managing Director Energy at Check24. Studies by the comparison portal had already shown higher electricity prices in rural areas in recent years.

This is also shown by figures from the Federal Network Agency. Across Germany, the authority determined a wide range of network charges for the past year. Households had to pay between just under 4 cents and more than 16 cents per kilowatt hour. In the cities, the costs are usually lower than in the surrounding area. On a national average, the authority determined a network charge of 7,5 cents per kilowatt hour, almost 4 percent more than in the previous year. The costs of building and operating the electricity grids account for more than a fifth of the total electricity price for households.

According to the authority, the line costs are relatively high, especially in Schleswig-Holstein, Brandenburg, Hamburg and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. This also has to do with the expansion of renewable energies. In the north, more and more wind turbines are going into operation and have to be connected to the power grid. "The operators of the local distribution network share the costs for this with the electricity customers," explained Check24 energy expert Suttner.