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Taking your EV on holiday? Read our tips, tricks and tales

4 min to readSustainability
In Europe, the summer holidays are just around the corner – and with airlines struggling to cope with the surge in traveller numbers, many people are opting to drive to their destination. This could be a cause for nerves among any new electric vehicle (EV) drivers with uncertainty about range and charging, but there’s no need to worry!
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This blog was originally published by ALD Automotive | LeasePlan, now Ayvens.

At LeasePlan, we’ve been driving EVs for years. We’ve collected some top tips from our colleagues to make your electric road trip a (summer) breeze …

Three things to remember

a. ChargePoint: The largest EV charging network across the United States and Europe. With the app you can find available charging points and start, track and pay for your charging sessions.

b. Plugsurfing: Fast, intuitive app – create a free account to get the most out of it. It’s possible to pay for your charging through Plugsurfing or to use the app to just find stations and not manage payment.

c. Travelcard: If you have a charge key with Travelcard, check out its app, which lists all charging stations where the key is accepted.

Which app is right for you?

Chargemap – great for a European road trip

Chargemap is one of the most popular charging apps and is trusted by a large community of users. The contributions of EV drivers – including photos, ratings and updates – are essential to the app’s success. However, for journeys outside Europe we recommend looking at more local apps.

Pros

  • Filtering possibilities, including cable type, networks and station ratings
  • Allows you to adjust battery start and end levels
  • Features users’ photos and ratings of charging stations

Cons

  • Chargemap pass is heavily promoted in the app
  • No option to select alternative routes

Shell Recharge – find a charger quickly and easily

Shell Recharge focuses purely on chargers – and it does the job well! The app has information on 300,000 charging points in Europe, with real-time details on prices and charger availability. With a simple design and an intuitive user interface, it’s a pleasure to use. The only thing missing is a route-planning feature (but there are plenty of other apps for that).

Pros

  • Fast, easy-to-use mobile app
  • Great network coverage

Cons

  • No route-planning feature

A Better Routeplanner – good for planning longer journeys ahead of time

A Better Routeplanner(ABRP) is best for mapping out longer trips, ahead of time. You’re able to customise your journey in great detail, including information such as your EV make and model, starting battery charge, extra weight, maximum speed and battery degradation. You can also choose the types of chargers or charging network you prefer. The biggest downside is the design: it’s not easy to navigate on a mobile, so we recommend using your desktop. Even so, it takes a bit of clicking around to find everything you might need.

Pros

  • Can select your car make & model 
  • Lets you adjust your battery’s starting level and estimated degradation 
  • Possible to choose stops at specific locations or with certain facilities

Cons

  • Web version isn't easy to use
  • No overview of charging station availability

Tesla Superchargers for non-Tesla drivers

In good news for all EV drivers, Tesla is starting to open their Supercharger network to people who drive an EV but not a Tesla EV! This is still in a pilot phase but for many people living in Europe, the possibility to charge at a Tesla Supercharger is available now. There are a few things you need to know before heading to your local Tesla Supercharger with your EV but once you’re set up, you’re good to go.

Download the Tesla app To use the Tesla Supercharger network, you will need to download the Tesla app and create an account. To find a Supercharger station you will need to select “Charge your non-Tesla”. Find more information on Tesla’s website

Only available in the following countries* For now, it is only possible to use a Tesla Supercharger if you live in one of the following countries and are travelling to one of the countries in the list.

Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, Mainland China, The Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States. (As of June 2023)

Tips on using a Supercharger point

Tales from the road

Of course, charging is only one aspect of driving an EV – but when it comes to taking an electric car on a long trip, it’s most common concern we hear. Hopefully, the above advice will put drivers’ minds at rest, but if you’re curious to hear from real EV drivers about their holiday experiences, check out our EV road trip stories!

Published at June 6, 2022
June 6, 2022
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