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Who’s bringing the horse - no - EV to France?

  • 05-04-2023 5:58pm
    Registered Users Posts: 13,507 ✭✭✭✭fits

    I think there will be lots of us bringing EVs to France this summer. We are going to the Dordogne region in the ID.3 Tour. I’m hoping to rely on Ionity mostly. Probably through the VW wecharge system but not sure yet

    Any tips welcome. ( As long as it’s not buy a Tesla 😀)



  • Registered Users Posts: 11,429 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    I was hoping to bring the EV to France but the missus vetoed it. Something about being traumatised while I'm weaving in and out of lanes at 130 while the kids are arguing in the back

    Dunno what she's talking about 😏

    My general advice is to use ABRP to plan your route, and set the preferred networks to Ionity and Tesla. It'll pick the open Supercharger sites if you put in an ID.3 as your car

    Also set the minimum number of chargers to 4, helps avoid the single charger sites

    We Charge should work fine for Ionity, you'll need the Tesla app for Superchargers (if needed)

    France seems to have a lot of public AC chargers, a lot of them work with We Charge. You could also get the Chargemap app, seems to work well for France

    A lot of campsites have EV charging, even when they don't advertise them, worth checking ahead to see what's available

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,205 ✭✭✭crisco10

    Yeah, there was a whole thread on this last summer.

    we took our I5 to Bergerac on the Dordogne for a month. Not a bother. Ionity (and Elektra) for the DC charging, then used the local AC 11kW which was fairly consistently in most towns and villages.

    chargemap was handy to have and the app good to find chargers, but paying directly via the website url on the charger itself was much cheaper.

    by the end of the month, I was starting to miss home charging but the public infrastructure was very good.

    ABRP is also your friend for the long journeys

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,617 ✭✭✭talla

    Heading to France last week in June / First week in July but not venturing too far for as first trip with electric car (Model Y P) - Domaine Des Ormes in Brittany, arriving into Cherbourg. Mont St. Michel super charger only 20km's away from sit so should be fine. Also subscribed to Elli at the moment for the cheap Ionity rates and slightly cheaper esb rates so that should cover me for any additional changing.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,429 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    I'm pretty sure Des Ormes has an EV charger on the resort. If you email the resort directly (not Eurocamp or whoever) they should be able to confirm

    Might be handy to charge up for the journey home

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,617 ✭✭✭talla

    Would pass by the Mont St. Michel supercharger on the way to Cherbourg anyway so not a concern for the journey home.

    Lidll in Dol De Bretagne a couple of kms away also has a 150kw and a couple of 22kw ac chargers available.

    Only thing i'm a little anxious about is the journey from Cherbourg to Des Ormes, Mont St. Michel may be a bit of a stretch but have Ionity on the way also as a fall back option.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,205 ✭✭✭crisco10

    Not sure what your drive is like on the Irish side to the boat, but the WB Yeats has onboard charging available, if you booked that you'd be fairly likely to get off the boat with 100%.

    Don't forget as well, it's likely to be nice and warm so your efficiency will be good. We drove Cherbourg to the Mont St Michel area and were comfortable for battery in 58kWh Ioniq 5. In any case, my experience of Ionity in France was entirely positive, nice and fast chargers so the one time there was a queue it didn't really last.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,617 ✭✭✭talla

    Driving from Letterkenny to Dublin Port so would be stopping off @ Castlebellingham Southbound Super Charger on M1 or pottentially City North Ionity.

    Will have either a roofbox or preferably a cargo box similar to the new Thule Arcos on the tow hitch if I can source in Ireland.

    Former will kill efficiency, latter should be only a small hit.

    I did book flexi ticket with Irish ferries but don't appear to have the option to add charging after the fact.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,149 ✭✭✭✭Berty

    Irish Ferries charging is quite limited, so books out very quickly. On my dates It is booked out, I went instead with Brittany Ferries from Cork who asked about if your car is EV but says its just for interest. I guess they might consider charging points onboard if they have enough people who tick the box. I'm taking a PHEV and have my chargepoint card, granny cable(along with proper 3 pin adapter - not cheap Dealz item) where I'm allowed/or not told not to use it at the mobile, it's max 10amps draw). So not a BEV driver but I'd like to put some elec into it as well.

    For my first stop in France I see that the local App that is used at that location(Shopping centre) is 56c but Charepoint bill 35c so kind of odd, normally the other way around usually.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,429 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    I would recommend booking the charging on the way home, give you a clear run to Letterkenny after the ferry

    There's two Ecars DC chargers at the Circle K in Dublin Port, if you arrive a bit early you can top up there

    I'm pretty sure there's several DC chargers in Cherbourg as well if you want to do the reverse

    But you should be fine, plenty of chargers around France

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,554 ✭✭✭Thumper Long

    Was looking at the Thule Arcos myself but already have a 550L Thule for the roof so trying to justify, should be able to source for you afaik they are the Thule agent for Ireland, have always either had or gotten very quickly any Thule bits I’ve needed they are based off the naas road

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,617 ✭✭✭talla

    Plenty of AC chargers around Cherbourg but only 2 two single dc chargers according to plugshare - single point of failure and last thing the family would want is to stop immediately after a 17 hour ferry journey.

    I do note Tesla are planning a Supercharger site there but its a Q4 2023 opening and another quite close to the Ionity site but its a Q1 2024 opening so next year should be fine.

  • Registered Users Posts: 46 GeneralDisorder

    Evening all,

    Sorry for the amateur question, but as a non-EV owner, if I rent an EV in France for 2 weeks, what is story with access to chargers? Do i need to sign up to app or can i just rock-up to a charger and use my credit card?

    From looking, there are lots of electric rental options, and i'm not planning and massive single trips and have charging at the camp site so it could be a viable option.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,149 ✭✭✭✭Berty

    This is what will travel with me to France to granny charge as free charging is free charging as I'm renting mobile therefore electricity. If there is a spare hookup on the mobile connection I can try 16a single phase connection otherwise as recommended on various forums that french adapter in black is safer than a crappy adapter from dealz that can't take the load safely.

    Anyway, for many BEV folks won't matter a bit for that's what I'll use for my PHEV for my short daily trips so I don't need to put Le Petrol in the car much.

    I'll have my standard type 2 cable anyway if they've put on a site charger, most campsite websites are horrendously out of date.

    Last year visited a few Siblu sites and they all had EV charging, slow charging at 7.6kw but still. Yet, only one connection at each place. Never ever saw anybody charging. In fact, can't really remember seeing many BEVs in that area of France.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,429 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    The quickest answer is it depends

    I think newer EV chargers in France are required to take card payments but older ones are a bit of a mixed bag

    From looking around on Plugshare a lot of them look to require an app

    Depending on the rental company, they might give you a charging card to give access to some networks, it's best to check this ahead of time

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,497 ✭✭✭ECO_Mental


    Took my ID4 to France last summer and I only had the car 6 weeks at the time so it was a bit new to me still....but it worked out great.

    Anyway in summary yes for the long runs you need to have a bit of a plan of where you are going to charge, ABRP google maps etc will be your friend here. The major routes are serviced well enough and I wasn't subscribed or preregistered to any to any (bar Ionity) before I went. I am lucky in that I live in Cork and only 10km from Ringaskiddy so just charged the car before I left home.

    I was lucky we stayed in a small Hotel for the first 2 nights and as luck would have it the hotel had free granny plugs in their car park for EVs. Just plugged the granny cable in and that kept me going and it was for free also (result). I was also staying in a mobile home and what I did was discreetly parked the car nice and tight up the mobile home and just plugged the car in on the granny cable😎 was only getting 2-3 kW but the car was parked up a lot anyway just going to the pool and the beach so it just trickle charged for most of the holiday. No one pulled me up on it so that was free charging as well. Just bring a good extension reel 13amp at least. Set the car to car at reduced AC current and you will be grand. Fully unwound the reel as well to keep the heat down.

    What I will say there is no real panic to get set with EV charging companies before you go, what you will find is that each region will have a dominant company in that region so once set up you should be good for you holiday. What I did see in the major supermarkets and a few other locations were there Type 3C plugs for 7kW and 11 Kw AC charging posts....would have been handy to have one of these plugs but I think they are expensive to buy for just 2 weeks holidays.

    Also have a proper Credit Card (not visa debit) it makes it a lot easier to set up accounts as they reserve sums and they cant do that with Visa Debit.

    All in all it worked out great, being able to charge for free off the mobile home was a big result and kept me going for the majority of the holidays. But plan ahead for the long trips

    6.1kWp south facing, South of Cork City

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,149 ✭✭✭✭Berty

    Speaking of Ringaskiddy, although they have 2 charging points at the terminal you'd have to be there rather early to spend maybe 2 hrs at one then up to 2 more hrs pre boarding as the charger is not after check in for cars. Carrigaline has some ESB ones and if you look at various maps you'll see some house on the way into the town on plugsurfing marked as free on his driveway. Must be a mistake, is that a thing now?

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,178 ✭✭✭Paul Kiernan

    Be careful charging in France. I got an Izivia card last year because it covers the whole country. But sometimes their rates were much higher than the local operator rates written on the charger. At one charger reasonable rates per kwh were displayed for both the 11kw AC and 50kw DC but Izivia charged a fixed rate of 25.5c/min for both. I plugged into the AC and it cost me about €1.30/kwh where the DC would have cost about 30c/kwh!

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,029 ✭✭✭Sabre Man

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,499 ✭✭✭blobert

    I did 4000+ km to South of France via UK last year in Kia EV6. 2000km done in 2 days both ways so trying to do it as quick as possible.

    On the way over I tried some non Ionity chargers in UK/France which led to faffing, calls to call centres and very little charging.

    Switched to Ionity only for way back and pretty much seamless stopping for about 15 mins every couple of hours (pretty much no slower than ICE).

    A few queues but they can be somewhat avoided by being smart, ie chargers by supermarkets/food places tend to be hogged at midday as people plug the car in and go off for lunch so avoid charging then if possible.

    We also used some Fastned chargers which were great, pay at point with card vs silly apps and worked perfectly/you could be charging in 20 seconds of arriving. Even connecting at Ionity with app was more of a headache.

    I didn't get to use unlocked Tesla chargers but I'd imagine they would just work also.

    Going to do same trip in Model Y long range (if it ever arrives) this year so will be interesting to compare. Kia has faster charging but I suspect when you factor in Model Y being more efficient and supercharger network it'll knock a bit of time off last years time. If not I'll regret selling the KIA!

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,429 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    +1 for using the "premium" networks like Ionity, Fastned or Tesla. When I was driving through the UK last year I stopped at an Osprey charging station and although it was a decent hub which took credit card, I got grid limited down to 50kW when I should have been getting over 100kW

    By contrast I got full power out of every Ionity charger I used, even saw the fabled 125kW in my ID.4. I'd love to see the Kia pulling over 200kW

    My main complaint with Ionity and Tesla is that you need to use the app to do a card payment. I've got the We Charge card for Ionity so it isn't the biggest deal, but an actual card terminal would be so much easier

    Having said that, I've yet to actually pay for my adventure in the UK so maybe it isn't so bad 😁

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,617 ✭✭✭talla

    Cheers for the tip on, took a couple of weeks of ringing but they finally got some stock in and collected yesterday.

    Definetely overrpiced (not, they were fair and actually gace a 10% discount), the arcos cargobox is about twice the price of a normal roofbox.

    Now the only thing I need to check is can you actually charge at the superchargers that you reverse into with the box attached e.g. Castlebellingham - I suspect not due to the short cables although Ionity should be fine.

    Will do a run next week weekend to Castelbellingham with the box attachedto confirm.

  • Registered Users Posts: 85 ✭✭McHonda

    I have an ev6 and planning for summer, delighted that we might be able to use superchargers but when I look at the tesla app I don't see an option to "Charge your non Tesla". I know you have to live in the country, i.e. France, so have VPN and added a french address to my account. Any tips?

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,351 ✭✭✭✭AndyBoBandy

    I got off the ferry last summer and drove 1,300km to another Ferry in Germany, relying solely on the Supercharger network…. And I only have a 50kWh Model 3 SR+….

    You’re in a Tesla, you don’t need to worry about it. I spent the grand sum of 0 seconds planning the drive to Germany… the car does it all for you.

    Just take on a nice big top up in Rennes to do you while you are in the camp for the 1st few days while you suss out local charging options….

    Just make sure you leave enough space in the car on the way home to stock up on wine in Cherbourg…

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,617 ✭✭✭talla

    Did a run today from Letterkenny to Castlebellingham Southbound.

    I was just about able to charge with Arcos box mounted on the Model Y - had to reverse back all the way so that the box was practically tiuching the the SC stall & warning sign in the middle of the spot.

    I was also curious as to what the drop in efficiency would be with the Arcos mounted.

    Suprisingly there was none, if anything the the efficiency was slightly better with the Arcos attached - similar temperature and avg speed as my last run two weeks ago.

    Have been to France plenty on times with the ferry so have all the ninja skills required to fil the car with wine 😊.

    Won't be heading down as far south as Rennes, as I said Mont St Michel supercharger will only be 20km away from Domaine Des Ormes so that will be go to charger of choice.

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,351 ✭✭✭✭AndyBoBandy

    If it’s only 20km away you’ll be grand so… you might need a visit once a week to keep you going.

    when we got there it was 40 degrees, so the feature of being able to leave the AC on while we left the car charging for grub/.toilets was invaluable…. Going from 40 degree heat to a chilly car was awesome…

  • Registered Users Posts: 708 ✭✭✭dingbat

    Hugely helpful.

    We're heading to the Loire Valley this week with the ID4 on the Thursday Dublin to Cherbourg ferry. Like an eejit I paid for on-board charging even though we live in Dublin because when I booked it I presumed we were going to/from Rosslare.... *facepalm*

    Based on this thread I'll be sticking to Ionity in France and then hypermarches etc when we get to the destination. It's a big campsite so entirely possible they'll have a local option on site.

    We're meeting up with some of our friends down there and there have already been some raised eyebrows about our going over in an EV.

    It's just... our car.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,429 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    Well you'll no doubt enjoy the looks on their faces when you arrive without any problems

    Usual advice applies, use ABRP to plan your route there and back and Plugshare to find local chargers as needed. Remember to set your network preferences to Ionity and maybe Tesla in ABRP

    If you haven't used your We Charge card recently then it might be worth testing it out before departure. And you can use the Ionity app to start a charger with just a debit card, no account needed. Handy in a pinch, but I doubt you'll have any issues

    "The internet never fails to misremember" - Sebastian Ruiz, aka Frost

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,351 ✭✭✭✭AndyBoBandy

    I’d also advise when meeting up with your friends, to have the battery nice and full, and have at least 300-400 in the tank so as to not give them any ‘range/charger anxiety’

    then if nipping off to a shop or something offer them a lift and make sure to have the cabin pre-cooled…..

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,990 ✭✭✭✭ELM327

    We're going to the same resort (sounds like) but we're going in august. M3 RWD.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,123 ✭✭✭sh81722

    Going for a 6 week trip to Finland and Austria and places in between in July/August on a Model 3 LR. This will be our 3rd Pan-European EV journey, including our first one, a 8000 km return trip to Finland on a L40 back in 2018, so have seen it all before. I expect that it will be a plug and play most of the time. The Tallinn to Warsaw strecth will be the only one that needs any thinking I believe.