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Departures on vacation: our advice for a long, serene journey by electric car

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Departures on vacation: our advice for a long, serene journey by electric car
Written by madishthestylebar

The holidays are getting closer and closer and for those who are lucky enough to leave, some will go by electric car. Some even for the first time. How to properly prepare your trip to anticipate recharging on a long trip?

The joke flourishes on social networks. “20 minutes of charging… if you find a free terminal that works”, writes thus a user on Twitter. With just over 12% of the new car market in the 1st half for zero-emission cars, the question arises: will there be enough terminals on the holiday route? And more broadly, how to properly prepare what will be for some the first big trip in an electric car?

Although the market is dynamic, the total number of electric cars in circulation is still confidential. The French car fleet has 38 million cars, around 600,000 zero-emission cars. Even by adding the vehicles of our European neighbours, many of whom are coming on vacation to France this year, by relating this figure to the number of terminals in operation, the account seems to be there.

More and more terminals on the highways

According to Avere, the association for the promotion of electric vehicles, 64,546 charging points were open to the public in France in July. This is certainly far from the objective of 100,000 terminals given by the government. But on the motorway network, this is progressing faster with the objective of having fast charging stations every 60 kilometers in Europe in the coming years.

“All service areas must be equipped before 2023 with charging infrastructure, so all service areas are being equipped, in particular with fast and ultra-fast charging”, specifies BFMTV Clément Molizon, Deputy General Delegate. of Avere France.

For example, on the Vinci Autoroutes network, 6 rest areas out of 10 are already equipped. 100% of network areas by the end of 2023. The objective is to have fast charging stations every 60 kilometers in Europe in the coming years.

“This year, there is no excessive risk of saturation, but you still have to anticipate that there may be a little bit of waiting in certain heavily used areas”, specifies Clément Molizon, however.

Planning your route with “A better route planner” (ABRP) can help optimize charging times. This tool is quite recognized within the Electric Car community because it allows you to enter a large number of parameters related to your vehicle. What to adapt the route, the stages of recharging according to the brand and the model.

Have some headroom before charging

It remains to make sure that the selected terminals work well. The Avere advises here to download the applications of several networks in order to optimize its journey as well as possible and to be able to bounce back in the event of a problem.

Ideally, in the face of unforeseen events (waiting, terminals out of order), it is better to plan a fallback solution in advance. For each stop, imagine what the nearest emergency station or terminal would be like. Always keep a reserve autonomy of at least 50 kilometers when arriving at the charging point.

This “reserve” is quite wide but it is reassuring because autonomy can quickly descend on the highway. The Avere also advises to moderate your speed on the highway, so as not to have to recharge too often. Driving outside the days of major departures or staggering your recharging outside the hours of heavy traffic can also be a trick to more easily secure a place at the terminals.

Multi-operator cards

Once the stages have been selected, the multiplicity of networks can be a source of concern when paying the bill, once the charge has been made. The ideal is to have a multi-operator charging card such as New Motion, Chargepoint or Chargemap. The latter has 1.2 million registered members in Europe to date, with twice as many new members registered in the first 6 months of the year compared to the first half of 2021. The advantage is to access many networks different in Europe: Electra, Fastned, TotalEnergies or even lonity.

The network of Tesla Superchargers is also accessible to users of other brands now in 13 countries. After France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Austria, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom, Tesla has announced the opening of the Supercharger network to all electric cars in five additional European countries : Denmark, Finland, Germany, Luxembourg and Switzerland.

How much does it cost?

Once the charging station has been found, the car plugged in, the question of the mode of payment evacuated, remains the question of the price. How much does a fast charge cost? Here are some orders of magnitude on the Ionity network, excluding subscription. Count 0.39 euro per kWh with the few generic 50kW terminals and 0.69 euro per kWh on 350 kW terminals, for prices excluding subscriptions.

Thus, for a “full” of 40kWh (the equivalent of 200 kilometers on the motorway), count 15.60 euros in 50kW and 27.60 euros in 350kW. This gives a total of 62.40 euros minimum for a journey of 800 kilometers by recharging only at Ionity. All that remains is to enjoy the holidays.

Julien Bonnet with Pauline Ducamp



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