From North to South, East to West, it’s a little known fact that we’re all paying slightly different prices for the same amount of energy. Across the UK each household and business’ energy bills are impacted by location. Where you live or work can have a direct impact on how much you pay. And while there are several reasons for this, it certainly does seem unfair. In this article we further explore the price differences for energy based on region and explain why this is the case. 

Why do different regions pay more for energy? 

Simply taking into account the difference between regions, based on population, size, and demand for energy, will provide some explanation as to why certain regions will pay more for the same amount of energy as others. The key reasons for this are explained below: 

  • Distribution Network Charges: Each region has its own local distributor with varying charges. These costs are passed on to customers through their energy bills.
  • Energy Supply and Demand: Suppliers buy energy from generators. Prices can vary depending on the number of customers in a region (more customers allow for bulk discounts) and the amount of energy generation in the area. Regions with lower generation capacity or higher demand might see higher prices.
  • Fuel Sources and Infrastructure: Some regions have more abundant or cheaper sources of energy generation, like renewable sources or nearby fossil fuel reserves. This can lead to lower costs compared to regions reliant on expensive imported fuels or with less developed infrastructure.
  • Demand for Energy: in areas where energy is in higher demand, such as cold regions of the UK in the winter, network distributors will factor this into their pricing. Charging more for areas where more energy is needed or used throughout the year. So, even just by simply moving from a ‘warmer’ part of the country to a ‘colder’ one could see you paying more, even before you’ve put your heating on. 

The most expensive regions in the UK for energy prices 

The cost of electricity by region in the UK varies depending on the price cap set by Ofgem, the energy regulator. Here’s a breakdown of the electricity unit rates from April to July 2024:

  • Most expensive: London at 25.72 pence per kWh
  • Least expensive (tied): Yorkshire and Northern at 23.36 pence per kWh

Here’s a table summarising the electricity unit rate and daily standing charge by region:

Region Electricity unit rate (p/kWh) Electricity daily standing charge (p)
Eastern 25.26 44.00
East Midlands 23.77 56.00
London 25.72 40.79
Midlands 23.84 62.73
Northern 23.36 71.20
Northern Scotland 24.96 61.10
North West 24.67 51.19
North Wales & Mersey 25.42 67.04
Southern 24.66 63.33
South East 25.29 56.90
Southern Scotland 23.97 63.31
South Wales 24.51 63.26
Southern Western 24.21 67.19
Yorkshire 23.36 67.44

 

While the current unit rates and daily standing charges may impact you based on where you are located, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you are guaranteed to pay more than someone living in a different area. Your usage also plays a huge role in the total cost of your energy. In order to save money on energy bills, the best piece of advice is to cut down your usage. Carry out proactive steps to reduce your energy consumption, from simply turning off the lights and shutting down your tech to upgrading your insulation and sealing windows from draughts. 

If you are struggling with your energy bills and feel your current contract is too expensive, it may be time to consider switching your energy supplier and finding a better contract. Both businesses and households in the UK can access support and guidance to find the best deals for their requirements and usage levels. 

Author

Rethinking The Future (RTF) is a Global Platform for Architecture and Design. RTF through more than 100 countries around the world provides an interactive platform of highest standard acknowledging the projects among creative and influential industry professionals.