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Hi, we recently finished a 4000km journey (all in) to Provence and had very limited issues with charging. I used ABRP and Chargemap to plan and got a Freshmile card, which was pretty much all we used. We were in the eNiro and used mainly 175kw chargers, one 350kw and a couple of 50kw chargers on the main journeys plus destination chargers whilst travelling around on holiday.

We didn’t use Ionity at all. Total chargers are great and cost 35p/kw for 175 kw speed using Freshmile card.

Some of the chargers we could ‘pre-book’ 30 mins beforehand using the app, which was great. The card cost €5 including post to the UK.

When we were in Provence, there were destination chargers everywhere, many free of charge. The only quibble is that virtually all are 22kw, but the eNiro could only take 7kw from them. It would be great to have a three phase charger in your car in France.
This sounds really encouraging. Have just ordered a card off the back of your post, just hoping it arrives in time as we leave on the 17th. Do you know how long yours took to arrive? if you don't have a Freshmile card is there any option to use contactless or to use an app?
 

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Sorry, another question for everyone on here. Has anyone used the Plugsurfing app and RFID card? I bought one almost two years ago for a cross -European jaunt that I was planning in 2020 and never happened for obvious reasons. No one has mentioned it here so I'm thinking maybe it is not all that helpful after all??
 

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All this makes me very nervous of getting a non-Tesla EV for long distance trips through France!
I know what you mean. Right now I kind of wished I had a Tesla. A friend of mine lives in Portugal and has a Model S and he regularly drives it back and forth to the UK (twice a year?). He says he has to plan the Spanish leg quite carefully, but he finds driving through France a breeze!
 

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I know what you mean. Right now I kind of wished I had a Tesla. A friend of mine lives in Portugal and has a Model S and he regularly drives it back and forth to the UK (twice a year?). He says he has to plan the Spanish leg quite carefully, but he finds driving through France a breeze!
Let's hope that Tesla open up their network soon and make all of this a breeze compared to the current, over complicated mess.
 

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This sounds really encouraging. Have just ordered a card off the back of your post, just hoping it arrives in time as we leave on the 17th. Do you know how long yours took to arrive? if you don't have a Freshmile card is there any option to use contactless or to use an app?
It came very quickly - days. Get the Hyundai card as a back up, but we only used Freshmile. Depending on where you are traveling, try and find the Total ultra-rapids at 175 kw (just off motorways), they are quick and relatively good value.
 

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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
This all sounds very clever, linking the app to your car? Is it also quite complicated to do? I am due to be driving my Knoa down to Provence in two weeks time and I am now just begging to sweat a bit from reading different things. Worried I won't have enough cards/apps and won't be able to get them in time if I need things posted. Any tips are welcome. If anyone knows of externals sites that they have found really useful planning then again, I'm all ears!!
It’s a little bit of a faff, but basically…

1. you need an ODB adapter, this plugs into the car underneath the fuse cover. This connects to EVNotify, a freebie that works best with an Android phone, I found the IOS version very flaky. I’d recommend that you get an ODB adapter as recommended by the EVNotify author, as some don’t work very well.

2. once you have the car talking to EVNotify, giving real-time data (SOC, battery temp etc) you can tell EVNotify to send its data to abetterrouteplanner (ABRP), sadly that can’t run on the same phone as EVNotify, but ABRP works well with IOS, so I just used a cheap Nokia for EVNotify and my iPhone to connect to ABRP, if you take their premium subscription you can in turn use airplay to display your planned route on the car‘s screen, SOC and expected SOC at arrival, I found that to be a godsend. Because the data is realtime, ABRP can constantly map this again your driving style, the terrain, weather, traffic etc. I found as a result I could drive much quicker.

3. If you decide you want to get this together, I’d suggest you start immediately as it can take a few attempts to get used to using it, not something you want to start on a long journey IMO. It is worth the effort IMO!

if you plan your route with ABRP it will give you a heads up where you will stop to charge (provided you keep within the limits you set (max speed, extra weight being carried etc), you can then make sure that you have the various apps and cards required to work with the various stations. Ionity is very convenient, but not cheap.
 

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Discussion Starter · #50 ·
I know what you mean. Right now I kind of wished I had a Tesla. A friend of mine lives in Portugal and has a Model S and he regularly drives it back and forth to the UK (twice a year?). He says he has to plan the Spanish leg quite carefully, but he finds driving through France a breeze!
A Tesla would make it easier but I managed a trip two years ago all the way from the French Pyrenees to Andalusia before Ionity got their chargers working, in comparison to that trip it would now be a breeze! There is something to keep in mind, your Kona is capable of travelling over 1000km albeit rather slowly, so if you start to get range anxiety, just slow down a little, it can make a huge difference to your range, and let’s face it, forgetting Tesla, the Kona is a range king…
 

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This all sounds very clever, linking the app to your car? Is it also quite complicated to do? I am due to be driving my Knoa down to Provence in two weeks time and I am now just begging to sweat a bit from reading different things. Worried I won't have enough cards/apps and won't be able to get them in time if I need things posted. Any tips are welcome. If anyone knows of externals sites that they have found really useful planning then again, I'm all ears!!
Provence is absolutely fine. Use Freshmile to get you there, then there are loads of 22kw chargers where we were (Vacluse) which allow you to use Freshmile or just tap your credit card.

Total 175kW are about €0.40-0.50 per kW. You can't be accurate as they work out €0.19/kwh + €0.22/min. So it depends on how fast you are charging. For most of the time our Kia eNiro drew 75kW/h from these.

Here is my suggestion:

Relais Champ du Roy (Total Garage): About 220km from Calais. 175 kW
Rue Voltaire - Laon, 02000 - France

Troyes, 22 Gregoire Pierre Herluison. 50 kW
This is the only 50kw we used, but there is a nice park right next to it for picnic. The bonus is, you can book the charger 30 mins before you arrive on Freshmile and it is super cheap. €0.16 per kW.

Relais de Marsannay La Cote (Total Garage). 175 kW
5 Route de Beaune - Marsannay-la-Côte, 21160 - France

CNR Lyon, Quai des Energies: 350kWh
(Don’t Charge for more than 45mins – but you shouldn’t need to, as they charge in blocks of 45mins €5 and then €0.45 for each kWh).

I hope this is helpful. We sent all of these destinations to the car via the app and off we went. Probably a bit conservative, but really on the Ultra-rapids, we left when the speed hit 40 kw/h which was at about 75% as we would rather be charging at max speed.
 
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It came very quickly - days. Get the Hyundai card as a back up, but we only used Freshmile. Depending on where you are traveling, try and find the Total ultra-rapids at 175 kw (just off motorways), they are quick and relatively good value.
Thanks, really good to know. Fingers crossed! So you were able to use the Hyundai card in France it just didn't take from your credit balance? I thought I read in another thread someone saying they had been hoping the Hyundai card would help on a trip to France but it didn't?
 

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It’s a little bit of a faff, but basically…

1. you need an ODB adapter, this plugs into the car underneath the fuse cover. This connects to EVNotify, a freebie that works best with an Android phone, I found the IOS version very flaky. I’d recommend that you get an ODB adapter as recommended by the EVNotify author, as some don’t work very well.

2. once you have the car talking to EVNotify, giving real-time data (SOC, battery temp etc) you can tell EVNotify to send its data to abetterrouteplanner (ABRP), sadly that can’t run on the same phone as EVNotify, but ABRP works well with IOS, so I just used a cheap Nokia for EVNotify and my iPhone to connect to ABRP, if you take their premium subscription you can in turn use airplay to display your planned route on the car‘s screen, SOC and expected SOC at arrival, I found that to be a godsend. Because the data is realtime, ABRP can constantly map this again your driving style, the terrain, weather, traffic etc. I found as a result I could drive much quicker.

3. If you decide you want to get this together, I’d suggest you start immediately as it can take a few attempts to get used to using it, not something you want to start on a long journey IMO. It is worth the effort IMO!

if you plan your route with ABRP it will give you a heads up where you will stop to charge (provided you keep within the limits you set (max speed, extra weight being carried etc), you can then make sure that you have the various apps and cards required to work with the various stations. Ionity is very convenient, but not cheap.
That sounds amazing, but probably a bit more faff than I am prepared for/capable of! Thanks for the ideas though!
 

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Provence is absolutely fine. Use Freshmile to get you there, then there are loads of 22kw chargers where we were (Vacluse) which allow you to use Freshmile or just tap your credit card.

Total 175kW are about €0.40-0.50 per kW. You can't be accurate as they work out €0.19/kwh + €0.22/min. So it depends on how fast you are charging. For most of the time our Kia eNiro drew 75kW/h from these.

Here is my suggestion:

Relais Champ du Roy (Total Garage): About 220km from Calais. 175 kW
Rue Voltaire - Laon, 02000 - France

Troyes, 22 Gregoire Pierre Herluison. 50 kW
This is the only 50kw we used, but there is a nice park right next to it for picnic. The bonus is, you can book the charger 30 mins before you arrive on Freshmile and it is super cheap. €0.16 per kW.

Relais de Marsannay La Cote (Total Garage). 175 kW
5 Route de Beaune - Marsannay-la-Côte, 21160 - France

CNR Lyon, Quai des Energies: 350kWh
(Don’t Charge for more than 45mins – but you shouldn’t need to, as they charge in blocks of 45mins €5 and then €0.45 for each kWh).

I hope this is helpful. We sent all of these destinations to the car via the app and off we went. Probably a bit conservative, but really on the Ultra-rapids, we left when the speed hit 40 kw/h which was at about 75% as we would rather be charging at max speed.
Brilliant information and yes, super helpful!! Thank you!!
 

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A Tesla would make it easier but I managed a trip two years ago all the way from the French Pyrenees to Andalusia before Ionity got their chargers working, in comparison to that trip it would now be a breeze! There is something to keep in mind, your Kona is capable of travelling over 1000km albeit rather slowly, so if you start to get range anxiety, just slow down a little, it can make a huge difference to your range, and let’s face it, forgetting Tesla, the Kona is a range king…
1000kms? How fast would you be going to achieve that? less than 15 mph? Certainly we are planning to drive gently, keeping it under 70mph on the autoroute etc. Overnight stop on the way down and a couple of the way back.
 

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Thanks, really good to know. Fingers crossed! So you were able to use the Hyundai card in France it just didn't take from your credit balance? I thought I read in another thread someone saying they had been hoping the Hyundai card would help on a trip to France but it didn't?
We just didn't need to use it. I had planned to use it on one day where I thought I didn't need to use either my card or Freshmile and it was ok. Every time I looked Freshmile was always cheaper, so we used that.
 

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Provence is absolutely fine. Use Freshmile to get you there, then there are loads of 22kw chargers where we were (Vacluse) which allow you to use Freshmile or just tap your credit card.

Total 175kW are about €0.40-0.50 per kW. You can't be accurate as they work out €0.19/kwh + €0.22/min. So it depends on how fast you are charging. For most of the time our Kia eNiro drew 75kW/h from these.

Here is my suggestion:

Relais Champ du Roy (Total Garage): About 220km from Calais. 175 kW
Rue Voltaire - Laon, 02000 - France

Troyes, 22 Gregoire Pierre Herluison. 50 kW
This is the only 50kw we used, but there is a nice park right next to it for picnic. The bonus is, you can book the charger 30 mins before you arrive on Freshmile and it is super cheap. €0.16 per kW.

Relais de Marsannay La Cote (Total Garage). 175 kW
5 Route de Beaune - Marsannay-la-Côte, 21160 - France

CNR Lyon, Quai des Energies: 350kWh
(Don’t Charge for more than 45mins – but you shouldn’t need to, as they charge in blocks of 45mins €5 and then €0.45 for each kWh).

I hope this is helpful. We sent all of these destinations to the car via the app and off we went. Probably a bit conservative, but really on the Ultra-rapids, we left when the speed hit 40 kw/h which was at about 75% as we would rather be charging at max speed.
Thought I'd let you know that my Freshmile card turned up last Thursday (very quick as you said!) so I have copied your suggested route and will give that a go. Thanks for your help and fingers crossed this time next week will be in Aix-en-Provence with our feet up by the pool!
 

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Thought I'd let you know that my Freshmile card turned up last Thursday (very quick as you said!) so I have copied your suggested route and will give that a go. Thanks for your help and fingers crossed this time next week will be in Aix-en-Provence with our feet up by the pool!
Sounds great, wish I was heading over again. Let us know how you got on. Remember Troyes, 22 Gregoire Pierre Herluison. 50 kW is the slowest one, but a great spot for a picnic as there is a big park and you can pre-book it 30mins before you arrive.
 

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I’m currently on the road, driving from southern Portugal to Germany, some 2880km. You get time to think about thIngs on a long trip ;-)

Driving through Spain it looked like most of France was on the road, trying to get back home, most at break neck speed. I was driving bang on the speed limit, virtually everyone was passing me, some a good 50km/h over the speed limit. I knew full well that driving at that speed in an EV would mean too many charge stops on a route that doesn’t exactly have lots of chargers (although it has improved significantly since my first wander south two years ago), it then occurred to me, the fossil fuelled car drivers don’t care how much fuel they are burning, they can stop for a 5 minute fill and be back on the road, but, of course they can never use that excuse to not buy an EV can they?!

This is a problem I feel, whilst we might like think the EV take up is good, I’ve counted less than 30 EV’s in three days of driving here, they might as well not exist and the roads are very busy.

Changing the subject slightly, France needs to hang it’s ECO head in shame, on this southern French route it’s still a shameful desert for chargers, if it wasn’t for Ionity it wouldn’t be passable IMO. We stayed with friends for one night, I didn’t want to siphon their electricity, so decided to use a rapid charger 20 minutes away, I arrive and there is a M3 charging, no one to be seen and no status on the charger to give me a clue how long I might have to wait, so I left. Later in the afternoon I went to the only other rapid chargers in the area, it was located next to a busy road with barely enough space to park our Kona, charge started at 44kw and within minutes dropped to 34kw, and there it stayed, it was 25c ambient, the battery was at a perfect 24c, and as no other charge I’ve had before or after behaved like it I have to assume that it was the charger to blame, all fine until you realise you are paying in 15 minute segments, and the 80% charge I needed took 1.5 hours.

Now I’m fairly tolerant, I love driving our EV, but the charging experience is still a complete mess. For instance a single account of part of today’s charging fun, I have an Iberdrola account, their chargers have never let me down. I can use my Iberdrola app to start the rapid chargers that Ionity have provided alongside their Ultrarapids, it’s 30c per kwh rather than Ionity’s adhoc 79c rate, I’m travelling with dogs, so I don’t need the quicker chargers so have been happy to slum it at 50kw, except today after their app started the charge, it promptly stopped, 8 hours later the app refuses to close and still thinks we are charging!

I tried my MyHyundai card to start the charge, the charger then stated “waiting for surplus power to become available“, an ID.4 and Audi eTron were charging on the ultras, so it appears Ionity was blocking the only Leaf capable charger to furnish their ultras! I gave up, put our car on the third charger paid Ionity their insane 79c per kWh and instantly got 76kw, so it wasn’t like there was a power shortage!

The only positive I can add, was that by having a load of apps, many RFID cards I’ve managed to get sorted at every stop, but the time wasted adds up, and I can see how someone else less prepared could truly get stuck, as we very nearly did when a reboot of a phone (to attempt to clear a stuck app) presented us with a SIM card number prompt, a number long since forgotten number, but SO thankfully still set to a default, without that phone we couldn't start anything!

Right now I honestly hope they don’t sell too many more EV’s, this journey would be a nightmare if there were any more on the roads!
It depends on whether you believe in 'choice' or not.

The 'choice' to spend all day travelling 400 miles, or 800 miles. In an EV, that'll be 400 miles.

This weekend I went to the aid of my son who had a car problem (not ICE related, could have easily been the same problem with an EV). I took my diesel ICE that was 3/4 full and chose to cover the 180 miles at a very fast lick, achieving an average speed of just under 70mph and 62mpg so I did not drive for more than 2.5hrs. (I arrived with more than half a tank remaining, so no need to do anything like hunting for a charger in an unknown location for the return trip either.)

After spending time with my son and visiting a place closer to home, I was then only 120 miles and again chose to pick a speed that was 2.5hrs long. This time I averaged 55mph (about 65mph target cruising speed) and the car delivered 84mpg for that, which equates to a pitiful saving of £2 for an extra half hour's drive. My time is worth more than £4/hour, but not then and I was chilled and did not need to hurry back.

So what is being proposed asked here?

That it is right to deprive people of a choice whether to save their time versus money/CO2? Possibly. But once we start down that road of deliberately choosing options that deprive people of choice, then where do we go to next? It's not really the world I want to be a part of.

If people were serious about CO2 savings on cross-continental journeys, they might bring back the car-trains that existed some decades ago. One could board a train with one's car and find oneself at one's far-flung European destination the following morning after a restful experience in the sleeper. Maybe this whole thing needs to be reconsidered? But the first step is to give people that option and see if they want it ... in other words ... more choice!!!
 

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Sounds great, wish I was heading over again. Let us know how you got on. Remember Troyes, 22 Gregoire Pierre Herluison. 50 kW is the slowest one, but a great spot for a picnic as there is a big park and you can pre-book it 30mins before you arrive.
The good news is that we were already booked to stay overnight in Troyes so we are quite happy with a slower charger there. We will have to work out a different route back as we plan stopping in Clermont Ferrand and Epernay, but I will have the confidence of having done the trip down by then and time to plan the route back in the relaxed manner of someone who has chilled out on holiday!
 
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