September 22

EV Road Trip Checklist

Image of Electric Universe mascot, Zapman, packing EV with family for road trip

Whether going on a holiday or just a long drive, taking an EV road trip has not been simpler - with hundreds of thousands of chargers on the network, the world is yours for the taking. 

With many EV drivers already taking their Electrocards on the long and winding roads, we've been sent plenty of happy EV road trip testimonials. Don’t believe us? Read our blog: London to Montenegro (3,500 mile EV road trip)!

If you’re interested in planning your own EV road trip but would like a little help, we’re here for you! Introducing the EV Road Trip checklist! A handy toolkit that will help you prepare for your next adventure (and let you focus on the fun drive ahead!).

Let’s get plugged in…

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1. Download the Octopus Electric Universe app and order a free Electrocard

With hundreds of thousands of EV chargers on the Electroverse network (across the UK and beyond), this is the only charging card and app you'll need. Want to take your EV from Liverpool to Lisbon? How about from Cornwall to the Czech Republic? Well, now you can!

Electric Universe doesn't charge any additional costs or subscriptions - we simply pass through the cost you’d normally pay to use the charger. And in several cases, we actually offer a discounted rate!

Sound too good to be true? Download the app and see for yourself.

image shows zapman using the electric juice card at a charging station with an EV

2. Plan your route (i.e. check for chargers before you go)

Planning your route is a given for any long drive - thankfully, checking for chargers along the way is just as easy!

As an EV driver, you’ll know your vehicle's efficiency and when you’ll need to stop for a quick top-up - if you know that after 120 miles your EV will want some juice, search the relevant area ahead of time and make sure you’ve got at least two viable chargers nearby. If you don’t know your car's efficiency - no problem! Just use the Electric Universe route planner.

The route planner allows you to select the starting location and destination, confirm any waypoints, and programme how much charge you want at your journey’s start and end. To make things even easier, you can send the route to Google maps, Apple maps, Waze etc. on your phone.

To learn how to use the route planner, check out our blog Electric Universe Features You Should Know, or watch a quick demo below.

How to use the Electric Universe route mapper

3. Start your journey fully charged

An obvious but important point to make! If you’ve got a long drive ahead, make sure you’re starting the trip with a full battery. There’s a lot to be said for getting on the road rather than waiting around for 30 minutes!

visual of battery levels going up

4. If staying in hotels, check if they have free chargers!

A slow charger can make a huge difference! Although not as commonplace as we’d like, more and more hotels are now offering on-site EV chargers. While the chances that they’ll be free are not guaranteed, it’s always a good idea to have somewhere close by that you can plug in overnight. And if that charger happens to be where you’ll be spending the night, even better!

5. Driving abroad? Check local requirements

Different countries have different driving requirements, so make sure you read up before leaving. For instance, did you know that to drive in some French cities you need a Crit'Air sticker (clean air sticker) displayed on your car? If don’t have one, you can be fined around £120 on the spot.

In short, research the countries you’ll be driving through, but as a starting point, here’s our list of things to consider:

  1. Driving licence

  2. Proof of vehicle insurance and breakdown cover (inc. policy number)

  3. Passport

  4. Proof of travel insurance

  5. Reflective jackets

  6. Warning triangle

  7. First aid kit (compulsory in France, Austria and Germany)

  8. UK car sticker (compulsory in Spain)

It’s also worth checking if you’ll need an international driving permit (particularly if you intend to drive outside Europe). IDP’s are processed by the Post Office and can be found here

6. Ensure your phone works abroad and can roam

Since the UK departed from the EU, a few things have changed - one of these being roaming charges. Be sure to check your phone contract before leaving the UK in case of emergencies.

qwerty

7. Cables - don't forget your cables!

Not that you would - but just in case!

8. Breakdown cover

Wherever you drive, it’s a good idea to have a breakdown package which will get you on the road again. To find a package that suits you, check out the below comparison sites:

  1. MoneySuperMarket

  2. ComparetheMarket

  3. GoCompare

  4. Confused.com

9. First aid kit

As we mentioned in the driving abroad section, an in-car first aid kit is compulsory in some countries - but it might be worth thinking about for drives in the UK too. Either buy a kit online/from a pharmacy or build your own. To see what should go in your first aid kit, check out the NHS web page here.

10. If you’re stopping for a while, check if there’s a charging station

As Electric Universe community member, Julian, says: ABC - Always Be Charging! If you’ve taken a detour for lunch or unexpectedly stopped at a tourist attraction, why not look for a nearby charge? Extra mileage is always a good thing - take a charge wherever you can!

11. Check the charger photos submitted by fellow EV drivers in the Electroverse app, so you know what to expect!

As charging points come in all shapes and sizes, sometimes, having the address for the charger isn’t enough. Fortunately, the Add a Photo function in the Electric Universe app means that you can see exactly what to look for. You can even upload your own photos Learn how to use this function (and more) in our blog: How to use the Electric Universe app.

Screenshot of the Electric Universe app showing how to add a photo of EV chargers to the app
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Feeling enlightened, or do you think something was missing? Let us know by sharing your feedback.

Interested in learning more? Head over to our Electric Universe Community area for more electrifying content.