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Mapping software

sleepydoc

Member
Aug 2, 2020
764
1,007
Minneapolis
I’m looking for decent mapping/route planning software. Here’s what I’ve tried so far:

  • Tesla Maps- Good routing, plans charging for you. Only lists superchargers. Only available in the car.
  • Apple Maps - good for routing, traffic. No capabilities for planning charging, very limited charging station information.
  • Google Maps - same as Apple maps but with somewhat more EV charging stations listed.
  • PlugShare - probably the most complete list of charging stations I’ve found but no routing capabilities. A lot of the charging stations it lists are also restricted.
  • A Better Route Planner - Better at planning charging stops, but the mapping software sucks. Example: I tried planning a route to a hotel in Madison, WI and it routed me to Madison, GA. It also has poor/incomplete information on charging stations. Finally, it completely ignores the fact that you need to charge your car once you arrive. When I tried to use it for another trip, it dutifully got me to my destination with 10% charge but there were no charging stations within 50 miles so I would have been stranded. How is that better?
What am I missing? I‘m looking for something that has decent mapping capabilities (like Apple, Google or Tesla,) can plan charging stops (like ABRP or Tesla) and has a complete list of charging stations (like plugshare)

Also, how does one find hotels with EV charging? I haven’t found any reliable source for this. When I’ve spot checked hotels that I know have EV Charging stations virtually no source lists them. Even the hotel web sites don’t list it so you have to actually call the front desk.

Attempting to plan my first ‘road trip’ with my Model Y (if 650 miles round trip qualifies as such) has practically convinced me that I should never use an EV for a road trip unless I want to waste hours of time using multiple apps and searches to make sure I’m not stranded anywhere.
 

jmaddr

Active Member
Mar 29, 2019
1,071
1,074
Florida
ABRP really is the good as it gets IMO. It’s certainly not perfect, but it’s certainly the most configurable, and by a large margin. For example, you mention it ignores charging at your destination… well it does allow you to configure a minimum charge level arriving at destination. I always put 50% unless I know the place I’m staying has charging. As for the Madison thing, that’s pretty dumb it doesn’t look for a Madison more local, but search is just something you might need to get more specific…just add the WI at the end of it if doesn’t find what you want the first time.
The amount of customization is mind boggling. Don’t trust the cost though, they don’t do a good job keeping up with supercharger prices.
 
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Ogre

Active Member
Sep 6, 2021
1,097
4,131
Oregon
Lots of places I go don’t have reliable or any internet access. A mapping app with off-line would be fantastic. Even Tesla’s built in mapping blew a gasket on my last trip. Nothing I didn’t figure out, but for a bit there it looked like I was going to end up out of gas in the middle of nowwhere. Fortunately the problem was with the map, not actual low range issue.
 

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
4,384
4,569
Maryland
Lots of places I go don’t have reliable or any internet access. A mapping app with off-line would be fantastic. Even Tesla’s built in mapping blew a gasket on my last trip. Nothing I didn’t figure out, but for a bit there it looked like I was going to end up out of gas in the middle of nowwhere. Fortunately the problem was with the map, not actual low range issue.
Google Maps has the ability to download the regional map to your phone. Google Maps can locate Tesla Superchargers, Tesla Destination Chargers, Tesla Service Centers, and EV Charging Stations.
 

sleepydoc

Member
Aug 2, 2020
764
1,007
Minneapolis
ABRP really is the good as it gets IMO. It’s certainly not perfect, but it’s certainly the most configurable, and by a large margin. For example, you mention it ignores charging at your destination… well it does allow you to configure a minimum charge level arriving at destination. I always put 50% unless I know the place I’m staying has charging. As for the Madison thing, that’s pretty dumb it doesn’t look for a Madison more local, but search is just something you might need to get more specific…just add the WI at the end of it if doesn’t find what you want the first time.
The amount of customization is mind boggling. Don’t trust the cost though, they don’t do a good job keeping up with supercharger prices.
I tried 3 different variations - "Hyatt hotel, Madison," "Hyatt Hotel Madison, WI," and "Hyatt Madison, WI." Two of them sent me to GA and one put me in the middle of Wisconsin. Just putting "Madison, WI" worked but sent me to some point in the center of the city. :/

Cost is the least of my concerns - I never worry about it when I'm driving and ICE car, why should I necessarily worry with my EV? I'll have to put 50% in for my destination charge. It's kind of stupid, though - 10% is fine going home or if there's a charger at the destination but it's like they never really thought about what you need to do once you arrive.
 

Dennisis

Member
Supporting Member
Feb 11, 2020
787
735
Tucson
I tried 3 different variations - "Hyatt hotel, Madison," "Hyatt Hotel Madison, WI," and "Hyatt Madison, WI." Two of them sent me to GA and one put me in the middle of Wisconsin. Just putting "Madison, WI" worked but sent me to some point in the center of the city. :/

Cost is the least of my concerns - I never worry about it when I'm driving and ICE car, why should I necessarily worry with my EV? I'll have to put 50% in for my destination charge. It's kind of stupid, though - 10% is fine going home or if there's a charger at the destination but it's like they never really thought about what you need to do once you arrive.
I use ABRP for routing and then Plugshare to plan out charging once I've arrived at my destination - that seems to be the best combo. As mentioned previously, you can put in your state of charge when leaving and what charge level you'd like to arrive at your destination with. That way you can ensure the charging options at your destination can support your planned activities. Used this way I've covered long distances and multiple night stays with no issues. I'm a "planner" so I enjoy running different scenario's in case my plans change - system works well for me. Also with ABRP If you're planning a long day trip put in your destination as a waypoint then your starting point as your end point so you have the whole trip covered. It's all much easier than it may seem at first and hey, no gas stations!
 
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