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Holiday rentals - Do you ask if it’s ok to charge?

asherwood

Member
Nov 21, 2019
105
40
UK
Hi

When going away and staying in lodges or Airbnb style accommodation, do people generally ask the host if they are happy for you to charge the car from a standard 3 pin socket in advance? And if so, do you offer to pay £10-£15 for a full charge?

Thanks
Scott
 
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Rustybkts

Member
Feb 8, 2020
507
294
Leicestershire
I do ask as you are stealing otherwise.
Over the years I have stopped at pubs and farm shops when my home builds have run too low to reach home.

None of them has ever said no but I was always buying goods when asking at the till and was never asked for money for electricity taken.

This reminds me of the 2011 RAC Future Car Challenge from Brighton to London for EV's.
My Lotus Elise EV was gasping only a mile or less from the finish line in Central London. I pulled up in a side street and looked around for somewhere with a socket but could only find a Thai restaurant that was closed but the door was open.
I called out for anyone from the foyer but there was no answer so cheekily, I pulled out the cable from a spring retractable extension lead fitted where the exhaust used to be and plugged in for 10 minutes!

Unfortunately, I was spotted by a roving film crew recording for the event and they proceeded to interview me................

Luckily it didn't make the News at Ten! :p
 

Roy W.

Battery running low...
Jun 3, 2019
2,286
2,273
Derby, UK
Yes, it’s only polite to ask, and right to offer to pay. You wouldn’t expect your host to provide free petrol, it’s just the same. The only time I’ve plugged in without asking is at Disneyland Paris, where I charged through the lodge bedroom window overnight. I decided Mickey could afford it ;)
 

Adopado

Active Member
Aug 19, 2019
3,262
2,422
Scotland
Hi

When going away and staying in lodges or Airbnb style accommodation, do people generally ask the host if they are happy for you to charge the car from a standard 3 pin socket in advance? And if so, do you offer to pay £10-£15 for a full charge?

Yes, you should ask. You should also be prepared for people not to have much of a clue about how much an EV might use so be ready to give a rough outline of anticipated use so it doesn't seem scary! I would have thought most places would give you electricity at cost (or free if just a single charge). Obviously a single top up is neither here nor there in terms of cost but if the property is on standard rates and someone needs substantial charging every day for a week it could add up.
 

LongRanger

Active Member
Jan 11, 2020
1,308
1,187
Wales
With the charging setup I’m going for we’ll be adding a kWh meter onto the sub-circuit/external consumer unit, so that when we have guests in the holiday cottage right next to our house, it will be easy to make an approximation then just a flat 50p/kWh charge.

This will offer people 3-pin, blue 16A and blue 32A options, all at the same flat rate and gives us the cost back of electric plus some of the investment in a dedicated connection for outbuildings/charging plus the hook-ups installation.

So a bit dearer than just pure electric but not unreasonable, I don’t think folks should expect to see electricity prices that they might get on their home EV plans reflected in what they should pay when charging off other people’s infrastructure for convenience.

Offering £10-15 might be a bit light.
 
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VanillaAir_UK

Supporting Member
Jun 17, 2019
7,155
4,677
Surrey, UK
ou should also be prepared for people not to have much of a clue about how much an EV might use so be ready to give a rough outline of anticipated use so it doesn't seem scary!

40p / hour is a nice simple round number for granny charging, although reality is likely to be a bit less.


With the charging setup I’m going for we’ll be adding a kWh meter onto the sub-circuit/external consumer unit, so that when we have guests in the holiday cottage right next to our house, it will be easy to make an approximation then just a flat 50p/kWh charge.

You may need to look into that carefully. I believe that there is a rule that you cannot charge tenants more than it costs you, but I am not sure on the scope and whether it affects holiday lets.

imho, if it was me, I would probably build a flat rate into the rental cost and offer free charging - that will be a selling point. Then adjust the flat rate to suit when you get experience of actual usage. Long gone are the days of going to a holiday let and having the feed the meter.
 
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Jason71

Active Member
May 8, 2019
2,422
2,165
Shropshire
With the charging setup I’m going for we’ll be adding a kWh meter onto the sub-circuit/external consumer unit, so that when we have guests in the holiday cottage right next to our house, it will be easy to make an approximation then just a flat 50p/kWh charge.

This will offer people 3-pin, blue 16A and blue 32A options, all at the same flat rate and gives us the cost back of electric plus some of the investment in a dedicated connection for outbuildings/charging plus the hook-ups installation.

So a bit dearer than just pure electric but not unreasonable, I don’t think folks should expect to see electricity prices that they might get on their home EV plans reflected in what they should pay when charging off other people’s infrastructure for convenience.

Offering £10-15 might be a bit light.
I would be quite happy to pay for electricity at a location but 50p per kw is more than almost all commercial chargers including rapids with the exception of Ionity. That's more than double a supercharger.
It's a free country and you can charge what you like but if you plan to make it that high you ought to make sure people know when they book. if I booked somewhere and then rocked up to find that was the price I would not be happy. That works out more per mile than diesel!
 

LongRanger

Active Member
Jan 11, 2020
1,308
1,187
Wales
It’s not worth too much worry - just an option for folks to charge if they need to, and we only get around 20 couples per year none of which have had an EV yet.

There are a few other charging options nearby - we aren’t a charity :)

[edit] forgot to add, of course this would be published with the booking, we would absolutely want to know if folks had an EV, as it means I would keep my car out of their way and charge elsewhere.

Folks holidaying with us could cover 0-200 miles in a day as you have to travel by vehicle to get anywhere in our location - so upping the cottage rental cost is not a sensible way to charge - it would make the holiday much harder to price.

I posted what I did to make the point that you can’t expect to take your home/cheaper charging arrangements with you wherever you go. In some more remote locations it will cost more - and then in more populated/greater choice areas it will cost less.
 
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Jason71

Active Member
May 8, 2019
2,422
2,165
Shropshire
It’s not worth too much worry - just an option for folks to charge if they need to, and we only get around 20 couples per year none of which have had an EV yet.

There are a few other charging options nearby - we aren’t a charity :)
Indeed. And Like I say you are free to charge what you like. just saying if you are going to advertise EV charging, people may not expect the price be that high so its only fair to let them know up front so they can avail themselves of the other charging options on the way if they so wish. Mind you since you are in Wales I guess you don't have to worry about competition from superchargers! :D
 

LongRanger

Active Member
Jan 11, 2020
1,308
1,187
Wales
@Jason71 ^^ I edited above as realised I hadn’t answered the question fully.

To be fair where we live I’m amazed we even get reliable electricity, expected it to be a bit flaky but fingers crossed it seems to hold up fine.

For comparison, the local Geniepoint linked network is available within a 10-20 mile radius and costs 30p/kWh plus a connection fee, if you took that as the yardstick for the OPs question - that would make a ‘minimum’ contribution £20-25 for a full charge in our area.
 
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NewbieT

Member
Aug 16, 2019
925
539
North West
£500 installation / 100 charges = £5

Perhaps say a one-off £5 plus the cost of the electricity. Seems fair.

Tesla must have higher capital costs and only charge 26p/kWh.

You definitely don’t want to become a ‘Supplier’ of electricity (which is highly regulated) but I’m not sure what rules apply in this instance.
 
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LongRanger

Active Member
Jan 11, 2020
1,308
1,187
Wales
.. except our installation cost about £2000 with planning and a new connection with the distribution company plus meter box and outbuilding consumer unit/circuitry. On top of that it’s about another £500 for materials including 45m of SWA 10mm cable, consumer unit, weatherproof switched connectors, RCBOs etc.

Again - just making the point you can’t take a home install/agreement with you in your head when you go to stay somewhere, not all destinations have it this easy.

Some folks will be happy to just waive charges / charge what folks are used to paying at home, but we won’t.
 

cezdoc

Member
Aug 15, 2015
449
647
Aberdeen, UK
With the charging setup I’m going for we’ll be adding a kWh meter onto the sub-circuit/external consumer unit, so that when we have guests in the holiday cottage right next to our house, it will be easy to make an approximation then just a flat 50p/kWh charge.

This will offer people 3-pin, blue 16A and blue 32A options, all at the same flat rate and gives us the cost back of electric plus some of the investment in a dedicated connection for outbuildings/charging plus the hook-ups installation.

So a bit dearer than just pure electric but not unreasonable, I don’t think folks should expect to see electricity prices that they might get on their home EV plans reflected in what they should pay when charging off other people’s infrastructure for convenience.

Offering £10-15 might be a bit light.
There's no doubt some psychology at play here but I'd take a dim view of being asked to pay 50p/kWh to use a car charger at a rental property. Presented with that pricing I'd make the same noise that I make when being asked to cough up £1 for a trolley or a plastic bag for liquids at airport security. If it's an advertised facility I would far prefer it was rolled into the overall rental cost along with the Wifi/hot tub/microwave etc. which I may or may not use during my stay. Why not spread the cost and get ICE drivers to help support the low emissions visitors? As someone else has mentioned you rarely get charged extra/feed the meter to use the heating.

I've stayed on a farm near Rhayader and the owner there didn't have charging facilities but we were able to rig up an extension cable from their duck house. As per the above I happily left them £5/£10 per overnight charge, I think it worked out at something like 25p/kWh but it was more of a tip and a thank you as it removed the inconvenience/delay of seeking out a public charge point while out on day trips. Obviously they hadn't invested in special charging equipment but in terms of cost probably only a few £ different to the 50p/kWh model. But it felt very different to being charged a flat rate well in excess of what you'll typically see at public charge points including most rapids.
 

Jason71

Active Member
May 8, 2019
2,422
2,165
Shropshire
There's no doubt some psychology at play here but I'd take a dim view of being asked to pay 50p/kWh to use a car charger at a rental property. Presented with that pricing I'd make the same noise that I make when being asked to cough up £1 for a trolley or a plastic bag for liquids at airport security. If it's an advertised facility I would far prefer it was rolled into the overall rental cost along with the Wifi/hot tub/microwave etc. which I may or may not use during my stay. Why not spread the cost and get ICE drivers to help support the low emissions visitors? As someone else has mentioned you rarely get charged extra/feed the meter to use the heating.

I've stayed on a farm near Rhayader and the owner there didn't have charging facilities but we were able to rig up an extension cable from their duck house. As per the above I happily left them £5/£10 per overnight charge, I think it worked out at something like 25p/kWh but it was more of a tip and a thank you as it removed the inconvenience/delay of seeking out a public charge point while out on day trips. Obviously they hadn't invested in special charging equipment but in terms of cost probably only a few £ different to the 50p/kWh model. But it felt very different to being charged a flat rate well in excess of what you'll typically see at public charge points including most rapids.
Its an interesting one. Car charging could be the next significant hotel revenue stream. In a few years when most people have EV;s most hotels / rentals / campsites etc will need charging facilities. It will be interesting to see how much they will try to charge to charge. Lets hope they don't all use Ionity as the benchmark! I often overnight at the likes of Premier inn for as little as £35 per night. Even at 35p/kwh they could probably double their profit on the stay if I charged 50kw overnight, (initial cost of charging infrastructure aside)
 

HenryT

Member
Jan 29, 2020
460
355
Manchester
There's no doubt some psychology at play here but I'd take a dim view of being asked to pay 50p/kWh to use a car charger at a rental property. Presented with that pricing I'd make the same noise that I make when being asked to cough up £1 for a trolley or a plastic bag for liquids at airport security. If it's an advertised facility I would far prefer it was rolled into the overall rental cost along with the Wifi/hot tub/microwave etc. which I may or may not use during my stay. Why not spread the cost and get ICE drivers to help support the low emissions visitors? As someone else has mentioned you rarely get charged extra/feed the meter to use the heating.

I would agree with that absolutely. The bane of my life.

Add-ons like charging for WiFi and £10 a day for parking (yes Hilton, this means you!) etc always felt like exploitation to me - much better to add it to the overall rate and be upfront about what the cost is.

Can't be long until we are told 'Oh and don't forget, the water is 5p a litre so take it easy flushing the toilet...'
 
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dakaix

Member
Feb 22, 2020
186
189
UK
Its an interesting one. Car charging could be the next significant hotel revenue stream. In a few years when most people have EV;s most hotels / rentals / campsites etc will need charging facilities. It will be interesting to see how much they will try to charge to charge. Lets hope they don't all use Ionity as the benchmark! I often overnight at the likes of Premier inn for as little as £35 per night. Even at 35p/kwh they could probably double their profit on the stay if I charged 50kw overnight, (initial cost of charging infrastructure aside)
I think this is already starting to appear, all three of the hotels (from mainstream brands) I have coming up are levying fees on EV drivers charging overnight. The downside though is that it comes on top to the £10-20 you're paying per night for parking.

Add-ons like charging for WiFi and £10 a day for parking (yes Hilton, this means you!) etc always felt like exploitation to me - much better to add it to the overall rate and be upfront about what the cost is.
Sadly this will only get worse, thanks to the trend of "Unbundling" that's taken hold in the travel industry. If you want to see what fee's are coming next look at the trend of applying Resort or Destination fees nightly, as started with the big hotels in Las Vegas... it's now common across many of the major US cities and will end up over here too without some legislation to prevent it.

Their tactic is simple, drive down the sticker price for the comparison sites to drive you to their website; and then layer the addon's to bring the cost back to where it was before (if not higher).
 

LongRanger

Active Member
Jan 11, 2020
1,308
1,187
Wales
we have no need to charge for water here - it's Wales :D

I don't doubt my thoughts might upset a few folks - but again the world is not always a "the value I expect to receive" ticket and the charging model will evolve as pace gathers now, so who knows what will happen as more and more people need flexible, accessible services.

Perhaps the mistake I made was wading right in with something that could have come across as a business plan - which is so far from the truth it's funny - it's a very local arrangement for a not-so-common use case, we have quite a unique setup here and not reflective of maybe the wider world. every day is a learning day :)

To get back on topic - what I do really like (said this on another thread somewhere) is that almost every user of this forum that I see content from is thinking about other people in the question they are asking. EV drivers seem to be a knowledgeable and friendly/considerate bunch.

So yes it's absolutely right to offer/expect to pay for consuming "fuel" wherever you travel to.
 

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