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Charging in the UK during holiday

  • 09-08-2023 9:38am
    Registered Users Posts: 7,000 ✭✭✭

    Hi All

    I got an EV through work last week .  Its my first - I’m brand new to the whole thing .

    We have a trip planned to Devon and Cornwall . We will be going from Cork to Rosslare and getting the ferry to Pembroke . Then a long drive to Newquay .

    Has anyone any tips for such a journey . My main concern is where / how to charge when we are in Wales / England




  • Registered Users Posts: 280 ✭✭eltoastero

    Which EV? I'm assuming it's not a Tesla (if it is you're covered by superchargers on the south coast of Wales and they're a few chargers towards Cornwall).

    If it's not a Tesla, then there are still a few Tesla superchargers in south Wales that are open to non-Tesla's. You'll need to create a UK Tesla account in their app to use these on a non-Tesla.

    If you want a single charge card (and are willing to take the hit price wise), the likes of Elli from VW might do the trick. If you want to get apps for each charge provider you might get a slightly better rate compared to Elli say.

    I rented a Model 3 in the UK last week, they provided a Shell Recharge fob. I was surprised by how many chargers this allowed me to use (I checked on the Shell Recharge app) - I could have used IONITY for the same cost as IONITY direct (I ended up, by chance, on Mer chargers the 3 times I used the fob). So Shell Recharge is another single app that might cover you for most / all eventualities.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,433 ✭✭✭September1

    Check first if your EV maker does provide any charging services, they typically are cheapest and often most convenient. Majority of fast chargers in UK will simply accept card payment.

    I would recommend using or app it provides for planning.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,166 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    There's a similar thread about this somewhere, but I did Holyhead to Falmouth (southern tip of Cornwall) in an ID.4 last year

    Trip was an absolute breeze, stopped at Ionity chargers in Stafford and Culhompton, used the We Charge card with the car and had no issues getting a charge

    Biggest hassle was the hotel charger, it had absolutely no instructions and the staff just said to scan the QR code (which didn't work). I ended up getting a QR decoder and figuring out the brand of charger from the URL

    So if using destination chargers I'd recommend checking with the hotel ahead of time. You can also find a lot of useful information on Plugshare

    If you're coming from Cork and going via Rosslare, you could try grabbing a charge in Wexford before the ferry, if you have time

    If you run out of time, there's a couple of DC chargers in Pembroke if needed

    For charging on the way, there's a Tesla Supercharger around Cardiff that's open to other cars. You'll need to register with the Tesla app to use it

    There's also a Gridserve station just over the Severn at the motorway services. They allow tap and pay so no need to register

    Finally there's also Ionity Culhompton near Exeter, you'll need the Ionity app or if your car comes with a charging card then that might work

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

  • Registered Users Posts: 91 ✭✭dsandson

    A Better Route Planner & WattsUp are both very good for establishing suitable places to charge. I was down in north Devon in late May this year. We'd planned to return via the Irish Ferries to Rosslare but at late notice had to bring our dog, and due tpo Brexit complications decided it was easier to return via Birkenhead instead.

    Anyway the Severn crossing to Fishguard / Pembroke is pretty well served with hubs. Theres Gridserve Swansea (8x350kW), Applegreen Electric at Sarn Park (8x 180kW with power share), Ionity Magor (6x350kW) and Gridserve at Severn Services (7x350kW). Be careful of the other services where the Gridserve sites only have 1 or 2 60kW units due to legacy power supply. Check out Osprey or Instavolt as well if you'd prefer to stop at a local pub for lunch and can charge slower.

    On to the M5 options can be sparse depending on your final destination. Ionity Columpton (6x 350kW) and Exeter services (Gridserve 12x 350kW and currently being expanded to 24) can be busy. If you're heading beyond Exeter then look for Osprey at Salmons Leap, 16x 300kW with newly reopened on site cafe. Site is new so is often overlooked.

    When you're out and about avoid Geniepoint chargers. The vast majority are broken. Theres very little AC charging when you're visiting attractions, so plan your trips for DC if you havent got a charger at your accommodation.

    Gridserve is tap to pay only, no app. Applegreen Electric will use the same app as for Ireland, but do add on the GB option to be able to use those chargers. They're app or tap to pay only. I'd recommend the app as the pre-auth is a nightmare to get back.

    Be warned that 79p/kWh is the going rate so if you can get a manufacturer card, you may be able to take out a subscription for a month to get better rates at Ionity or BP Pulse. I was able to get 44p/kWh using a BP Pulse sub on my Charge MyHyundai card.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,000 ✭✭✭Barr

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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,000 ✭✭✭Barr

    OP here , thanks for all the good advice , sorry should have said the car is an ID.4

    The car is through Lease Plan . It  came with a fob that says eStation. (its supposed to work at all the ESB points and Ionity points here ) Not sure if they are outside Ireland .

    If the majority of fast chargers in Wales and England accept credit card , it would be be a load off . 

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,166 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    Hmm, never heard of that charge card before, not sure I'd 100% trust it to work in the UK given its an Irish company

    There's usually an app with those charge cards, you could see if any UK chargers are listed

    Not all UK chargers allow card payments, unfortunately Ionity and Tesla only allow it via the app at the moment

    Since you've an ID.4, you should be able to register for We Charge via the Volkswagen app. This will allow you access to a lot of chargers including Ionity. You can use the app or order a We Charge card to start the chargers

    It's probably worth getting the Tesla app and registering with them as well. I recall you have to provide a UK address to use the chargers in that country, someone with more experience can help there

    Here's that other thread if you're interested

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

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,166 ✭✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin

    One other bit of advice, make sure you've roadside assistance for the UK and maybe consider bringing a tyre repair kit.

    Got a flat in Cornwall last time and had to get AA out to fix it and then go to a tyre repair shop

    Cost me a couple of hours which resulted in me missing the ferry home 😬

    Luckily I was able to get the next one

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