When it comes to choosing which electric or gas company to pick, there are other factors to be considered in addition to the lowest price. From environmentally friendly options to new customer bonuses, each company provides different benefits. To sort through all the options, we have provided a selection of the top rated companies below, as well as links to comparative online tools that will clearly show you the differences in price and the various benefits. Choosing a different provider could add up to big savings in your utility bills.
Electricity & Gas
In this section, we have listed a selection of electricity and gas suppliers based on the results of comparative investigations undertaken by Stiftung Warentest in an impartial and objective way. More information about this foundation, established in 1964 by the German federal parliament, can be found here.
What you need to know
What are the main gas and electricity suppliers in Germany?
There are over 1000 energy suppliers in Germany. From private companies to public ones, you have an extensive variety to choose from. Here is the list where you can find all of the electricity suppliers and here for all the gas suppliers in Germany (link are all in German). However, to make your choice a bit easier, we have listed the highest rated energy companies here:
- GASAG (gas) 24 hour hotline
- Vattenfall (electricity)
- E-on (energy)
- RWE (energy & water)
- Yello Strom (energy)
- VNG (gas suppliers to the eastern part of the Germany)
- MVV (utilities in the south of the country)
I was signed up automatically to one energy supplier company. Am I allowed to switch?
Yes, you are automatically assigned an energy supplier company when you move into a new place to ensure you will have uninterrupted access to gas and electricity, but you are under no obligation to stay with that company. In fact, it's highly recommended to research your other options and switch to save money.
How do I switch to another energy provider?
The new energy provider you decide on going with will do the switch for you. Just make sure you get a confirmation from your previous energy supplier about the cancellation (usually it's sent automatically). You will then usually be asked to record and send in the reading on your meter.
When you sign up for a new contract, be sure to take note how long your contract is for and and the notice period needed for cancellation.
How can I save money on gas and electricity?
These tips will not only save you money, they are also better for the environment, a win-win situation!
Light – Choose LED light bulbs. They are more expensive than the regular ones, but will save you money in the end because they use less electricity and last for years.
Kitchen – Use newer kitchen appliances that consume less energy.
Electronic devices – Turn off and unplug all of your cables and electrical devices when you are not using them.
Tips for Winter:
Heating can be quite expensive in Germany, especially if you are in a big apartment with high ceilings and drafty older windows. There are a few things you can do to lower your bill:
1. Ensure that windows are properly sealed (you can seal it with ‘Tesa' or similar products available at hardware stores). This will guarantee that the heat and cozy temperature of your apartment doesn't leak out of the window.
2. Wear extra layers of clothes.
3. Turn the heating down at night, as you don't need as much heating when you are under a blanket.
4. Try to hold out until November or December before you turn on the heat.
Does the registration of a new person in my address/apartment alter the cost of the "Nebenkosten," even if the consumption doesn’t change?
Nebenkosten are calculated by the number of people living in the apartment. Keep in mind that this is just a calculation and that what really matters is the real consumption. You will get a refund at the end of the year if you have consumed less than what you have paid for.
Important note: If your Hausverwaltung decides to increase the Nebenkosten because of your friend moving in, they will have to inform you by letter in advance.
My building uses central heating, how is the price calculated for this?
The costs with central heating are usually calculated based on the size of your apartment as well as your consumption.
How is my bill calculated?
Energy consumption is charged by the month. However, the electricity and gas providers will only have access to your actual consumption at the end of the year when there is a meter reading. Until then, they are basing your monthly bill only on their estimation. At the end of the year, you either will get money refunded, or you will have to pay extra, depending on how your actual consumption compares to the estimated amount.
Is it normal to receive a letter for additional costs of gas/electricity from my landlord?
No. The payment for electricity should not go to your landlord, only to the electric company. We recommend that you show someone the letter that you received to see if there is any reasonable explanation for this payment.
Are you missing any information on this topic?
We are constantly improving our offer and are therefore interested in your comments and ideas. If you are for example missing some information or want to report a problem on the website, please contact us. Thank you!