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Hi all. So many charging networks and so many different ways to charge....
I've had a Tesla for over 4 years now and can say without a doubt that the charging infrastructure, with the exception of Tesla, is appalling.
Most require an upfront fee.
Most charge way above standard electricity rates.
Most have demonstrated technical difficulties.
Most require laborious registration.
Most are not high powered.

The best ones I've found so far are:
Tesla Supercharger
Tesla Destination Charger
Ecotricity
Pod-Point

Why doesnt every supermarket across the country have between 3-4 Fast Chargers that you can pay using contactless payment?

Can you imagine driving into a petrol station, first being asked to register a form, then being asked to add money on account, then finding out that the pump isn't working properly, then finding out that the price of petrol at this station is twice the next petrol station.... The whole thing is farcical.

And those in government do nothing because they are all on the take. Keep the status quo for big oil. Not in the interests of humanity.

Do you agree with me? What's your favourite/worst network?
 

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Seriously though...

Best:
Instavolt
Engenie

Worst:
Most of the others
 

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I Realise they are so far only in a few regions, but Electric Blue has quickly become my favorite network. They've took over a number of council contracts and replaced CYC. They're doing good things, installing lots of chargers and posts, tons of lamppost chargers, a number of rapids mostly all with 2 or more chargers per location, 24/7 Support that is actually helpful when you speak to them, and they seem to be getting regular cleaning and maintenance. I use a RFID Card for them but they also have an app, and most are equipped with credit card terminals now too. After Electric Blue, other networks I like are Instavolt, Geniepoint and Ecotricity, despite their flaws.

The worst networks are any of the ones under the BP Chargemaster brand. Also Engenie, despite many people singing their praises are also pretty bad imo too.
 

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Kona64
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Also the issue of so many different ways to start the charge.
I mean my fear is that my wife takes my car, and for whatever reason I've failed and it needs charging.
She rarely drives it alone, and if she has been with me when I've charged it, she is either in the car or off away from it whilst I am trying to not look frazzled at the charge post.

How to "easily within minutes" understand that for unit X you do Y, for unit B you do K.

Even the ones that take debit cards contactless, the screens get you do things in different orders, vs an ICE petrol station where you just stab normally one button, if anything at all.
 

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I navigate exclusively via instavolt these days. Everyone else is unreliable or a faff
 
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I normally look to Instavolt first, Polar (but I have a card so easy to start charges without faff) or Shell. But to be honest none are that hard to get going if you've registered beforehand - I plan a journey and if I might need one I've not registered for then I do it ahead of time. Yes, contactless payment card is preferable and hopefully we'll get there eventually.

Most charge way above standard electricity rates.
Why would that be a problem? A cafe or restaurant charges you way above the ingredient costs. Installing the (expensive) chargers, the big grid connection, the land they're on, the payment stuff, maintaining them etc all costs money. I want sustainable prices that mean they can afford to keep them reliable and roll out lots more so they're everywhere I need them, and with enough in locations to mean I can usually pull up and find one available.

Telsa Superchargers are a loss leader funded by massive debt to sell their cars. It's not a model for everyone else, and I'd expect rates to go up and up in the coming years until it's cost-neutral for them.
 

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Even the ones that take debit cards contactless, the screens get you do things in different orders, vs an ICE petrol station where you just stab normally one button, if anything at all.
and so many just sit there looking at you when you press the screen or hold your rfid against it. You start to think it's not recognised your request and go to press again when all of a sudden it lights up. I think there's someone back at HQ with a mean sense of humour.

Another I've noticed recently. The screens are in the wrong language. Especially at supermarket sites.
 
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Why doesnt every supermarket across the country have between 3-4 Fast Chargers that you can pay using contactless payment?
Money.
Supermarkets are generally not a good location for a rapid charger.

Nevertheless it is happening.

Next question?
 

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I've always found the Lidl podpoints reliable, but the problem with rapids is that they are hideously expensive to install. Not only for the unit, but they obviously have to be on a pretty meaty grid connection too.
I can't see how the current rates from polar, podpoint, instavolt at 23p-35p are sustainable. Ionity at 69p looks more sustainable. But when domestic electricity rates are around 15p , there isn't a lot of profit there.

Paradoxically too, as EVs have longer ranges, there will be less demand for rapid chargers, it will mainly be sales reps/delivery vehicles etc.
 

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Had my first rapid failure to charge in Bridlington last night. Single geniepoint in town which was a right faff to use at Morrison’s, even wife commented it was most difficult charge to start of ALL the 1000 mile road trip Didn’t start charge ( and we’d had a rapid charge on every other network - phoned to report fault and even a unit reset did it clear it ). Ended up on a 7 kw podpoint for 5 hours for what could have been charged in 30 mins on the morrisons today. we had reserve to get to a Rapid up in Scarborough or down in hull but decided to just go for the slow charge as we wanted to visit Brid in any case today.

So far wife likes polar for the ease/ price combo .. not happy paying 2.5x the price for the instavolt we used but she liked it. Podpoint the app is good so she was happy with that on the rapid in Newcastle and on the units today in Brid. She’s definitely preferring the card experience though for speed as we got a charge within 10s of plugin in every polar so far charger. (4 charges in a week, one free, 3 paid for )
 

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Had my first rapid failure to charge in Bridlington last night. Single geniepoint in town which was a right faff to use at Morrison’s, even wife commented it was most difficult charge to start of ALL the 1000 mile road trip Didn’t start charge ( and we’d had a rapid charge on every other network - phoned to report fault and even a unit reset did it clear it ). Ended up on a 7 kw podpoint for 5 hours for what could have been charged in 30 mins on the morrisons today. we had reserve to get to a Rapid up in Scarborough or down in hull but decided to just go for the slow charge as we wanted to visit Brid in any case today.

So far wife likes polar for the ease/ price combo .. not happy paying 2.5x the price for the instavolt we used but she liked it. Podpoint the app is good so she was happy with that on the rapid in Newcastle and on the units today in Brid. She’s definitely preferring the card experience though for speed as we got a charge within 10s of plugin in every polar so far charger. (4 charges in a week, one free, 3 paid for )
For the record you can use your Polar (or any other) RFID card you have on Geniepoint without having to order and carry around even more cards. It's far less hassle, and it's rare that you'll find their chargers to be broken. Definitely give them another try sometime.

In my experience they're way more reliable than Polar, and their 50kW units tend to charge noticeably faster too.
 

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I've had a Tesla for over 4 years now and can say without a doubt that the charging infrastructure, with the exception of Tesla, is appalling.
Most require an upfront fee.
Most charge way above standard electricity rates.
Tesla charges 24p/kWh. What would you say is a fair rate?

For info: public charge points have to charge 20% VAT vs the 5% we pay for home use.
 
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