Destination charging coming to fore for fleets and workplaces
As more drivers switch to electric vehicles, the availability of reliable chargers at destinations including workplaces is becoming increasingly paramount.
Research carried out by vehicle charging specialist Ctek and YouGov has revealed that while 68% of UK EV drivers still prefer to charge at home, more than a third (37%) are now using public or destination chargers, 12% are charging at work and 9% at petrol stations.
Cecilia Routledge, CTEK’s global head of e-mobility, said: “With previous estimates of up to 90% of EV charging taking place at home, this is a fairly significant shift, and we can expect destination charging to really come to the fore as business picks up and people start returning to the workplace.
“The installation of reliable EV chargers is becoming increasingly important to companies and business owners looking to meet the needs of their staff and clients, who will be reassured to know they can park up and recharge their vehicles on site before returning home, or for whatever journey they face next. The provision of EV charging facilities will also help companies meet their sustainability targets, supporting a cleaner, greener future for us all.”
It’s a viewpoint that Arval also set out earlier this year. Speaking to Fleet World, senior consultant David Watts – who has been a leading advocate of electric vehicles in the fleet industry for more than 10 years – said that the decision to install workplace charge point should be treated entirely separately from EV car policy decisions.
He explained: “You should be thinking about putting charge points in at work, not because of your company car policy but because your employees who are based in the office will at some point, if they’re not already, be transitioning to EVs. Whether they’re in a company car or not, they will at some point over the next 15 years transition to EVs. And for those people who can’t charge at home, you are going to make that significantly easier for them to be able to do so.”
He added: “As everyone knows, the majority of charging happens overnight. But actually if a business is able to put in charge points at work, then what that does is it grows the accessibility of EVs to more employees. Or it removes some of the barriers to some employees – because that charging profile switches on its head. Instead of charging up at home, they then charge up during the day at work.”
And the Association of Fleet Professionals (AFP) has highlighted in its EV training for fleets that workplace chargers could be put to use outside of work hours for the wider community – either as a free benefit or to generate extra revenues for the company.
According to Ctek, destination charging provides “new-fashioned refuelling”, as sustainable transport goes full circle. Drivers are now expecting to refuel at destinations in the same way that, in the days of horses and carriages, people would ‘refuel’ their horses while they were at work or visiting a client.
“People used to arrive at their destination on a charger, now they expect to plug into one,” said Routledge. “With the Government set to phase out petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030, the future of sustainable transport lies with rechargeable vehicles. At CTEK, we are committed to supporting the road to zero through the provision of thoroughbred EV chargers that will make sure we can keep moving with the times. It worked then, and it works now – it’s just a different kind of horsepower!”