april electricity hike
Cape Town and Jo’Burg will be hardest hit by the April electricity price hike. Image: Canva

Home » Bad news for SA’s major metros after April electricity hike

Bad news for SA’s major metros after April electricity hike

We list the most expensive (and cheapest) provinces after the April electricity price hike. It’s not good for SA’s metros.

02-04-24 15:46
april electricity hike
Cape Town and Jo’Burg will be hardest hit by the April electricity price hike. Image: Canva

The latest April electricity price hike comes into effect this week, while municipal customers’ price adjustments start from June 2024 only. Taking the form of a 12.74% increase, it is part of Eskom’s Multi-Year Price Determination (MYPD) deal, that will see yet another increase this time next year, too.

APRIL ELECTRICITY PRICE HIKE

April electricity price hike
A rare night where the Jo’Burg skyline is lit up. Image: File

In its most basic form, take whatever you pay currently for electricity, and add on 12.74%. That gives you a fair idea what the April electricity price hike will cost you. According to research across South Africa the average electricity use is 900 kWh per household, per month. And ranges between R3 500 and R2 600 depending on province (more on this below).

So, let’s meet in the middle and call it an even R3 000. 12.74% of R3 000 is R382 extra you’ll have to fork out each month. Furthermore, that adds up to R4 584 more per year. For cash-strapped South Africans this is a tough ask, but for the country’s most vulnerable citizens like our aged and those caring for young children through South African Social Security Agency grants, many will simply not be able to afford the increase.

BREAKDOWN PER PROVINCE

April electricity price hike
Cape Town is the semigration destination of note in South Africa. But you will have to pay extra for your electricity. Image: File

When you break the April electricity price hike down per province, it gets even more disheartening. The comparison below is by no means definitive, because it is extremely tricky to calculate exact power usage. What sort of grid you’re on, prepaid versus conventional, and even the historical usage in your home all plays a role in determining the price you pay.

Nevertheless, MyBroadband has put together an insightful article on the April electricity price hike, and how much it is likely to cost South Africans in various provinces.

CAPE TOWN AND JO’BURG THE HIGHEST

RankMetroPrepaid (per kWh)Conventional (per kWh)Average bill (900 kWh)
1.Cape Town R3.76 R3.48R3,509.89
2.PretoriaR3.43R3.43R3,090.69 
3.East London R3.42R3.40R3,082.25
4.Ekurhuleni R3.32R3.32R3,062.15  
5.Nelspruit/MbombelaR3.42R3.42R3,008.25
6.Gqeberha R3.25R3.25R2,990.32
7.RustenburgR2.74R2.75R2,947.15
8.Polokwane R2.99R2.99 R2,858.33
9.JohannesburgR2.80R2.47R2,846.22 
10.BloemfonteinSummer: R2.76Winter: R3.53R2,829.41
11.KimberleyR3.03R3.03R2,724.50
12.DurbanR2.97 R2.97R2,671.44 

*Data from MyBroadband

As you can see, Cape Town has the highest electricity price of any major metro. And prepaid meters in Johannesburg have the highest fixed electricity cost per kilowatt-hour (kWh). Adding insult to pecuniary injury, Jo’Burg charges a R240.56 service fee to users with conventional electricity meters, along with a R708.63 capacity charge. This equates to R950 before a plug has even been switched on. 

LOWEST PRICES

April electricity price hike
Cash-strapped South Africans will be counting their pennies after the April electricity price hike. Image: File

On the other end of the spectrum, April electricity price hikes are kinder to Durban and Bloemfontein residents. Durbs enjoys the lowest average monthly bill thanks to low tariffs and no basic service charge. Bloemfontein is the most affordable average price per kWh and it offers different rates: R2.76 per kWh in summer months and R3.53 per kWh in winter.

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