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Peak Time Alps Road Trip - Charger queues?

WillyC

Member
Sep 16, 2020
16
12
UK
We are (hopefully) travelling to the Alps in the Easter holidays next April and I'm perfectly happy to road trip in the M3, my concern is that it's a busy day for travelling to the Alps and if there are queues for the chargers on our 4/5 charging stops, then it's going to be a very long journey with a 5 and 8 year old in the back.

I was wondering if anyone else has had issues with queues at autoroute superchargers in France when travelling at busy times?
 

Imrie

Member
Sep 12, 2020
30
6
UK
We are (hopefully) travelling to the Alps in the Easter holidays next April and I'm perfectly happy to road trip in the M3, my concern is that it's a busy day for travelling to the Alps and if there are queues for the chargers on our 4/5 charging stops, then it's going to be a very long journey with a 5 and 8 year old in the back.

I was wondering if anyone else has had issues with queues at autoroute superchargers in France when travelling at busy times?

Planning something similar, how are you managing charging once you get there? Would your accommodation have a charger. I’ve wondered what battery depletion would be like after a week parked up in the minuses. This I imagine would cause a run on the Moutier supercharger when everyone leaves on the same day...
 

WillyC

Member
Sep 16, 2020
16
12
UK
Planning something similar, how are you managing charging once you get there? Would your accommodation have a charger. I’ve wondered what battery depletion would be like after a week parked up in the minuses. This I imagine would cause a run on the Moutier supercharger when everyone leaves on the same day...
I'm hoping we can charge at the accommodation. We're going to our usual haunt and I saw a Model S years ago running a cable out of the building. I guess with there being more EVs around they won't want to be offering that any more, but I'm hoping there are some chargers or sockets in the underground parking they've got. I'll speak to the accommodation once the ski season starts in France, I think scheduled to open on the second week of January now. We're in La Plagne, so a pretty large resort, but there appears to be no public charging infrastructure.
 

WillyC

Member
Sep 16, 2020
16
12
UK
It looks like chargers have appeared at La Plagne since I last checked....
Google Maps

And if those numbers on Google maps are to be believed, that's 35 connectors, but that doesn't sound correct to me!

Edit: Looking at the New Motion website itself, it looks like there's 1 11kw charger, so I don't know where Google is getting their 35 connectors from!
 
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We went to avoriaz at half term back in feb in our model 3 sr,
We allowed a couple of days to get there which didn’t cause any issues with time or charging but different story on the way back.
We left avoriaz at 9am on the Saturday (v busy day) with a Eurotunnel booked at 10pm, the traffic was a nightmare but more so the queues at each supercharger, needless to say we were 90mins late for the train and got allocated to the next available at 230am! The longest day ever which our 7yr old coped admirably well with. We arrived back home in sw London at 4am.
This year we have put our holiday back to Easter but we’ll return on the Friday evening and try and get a third of the journey done that night. Avoriaz itself is car free but the indoor parking has 4 chargers so I had the best part of 7 days to get the car charged back up to 100% for the journey home.(we actually gained charge coming back down the mountain!)
Overall was a good experience - the nav was accurate enough - just don’t try driving from the alps to Calais in one day on the busier days!
Funnily enough having to stop and charge more often than you would in an ice car is better for kids and then the more frequent stops break the journey up, for the driver too. You’re not tempted to do 4/5hr stints.
Pm me if you want any more info.
 
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WillyC

Member
Sep 16, 2020
16
12
UK
We went to avoriaz at half term back in feb in our model 3 sr,
We allowed a couple of days to get there which didn’t cause any issues with time or charging but different story on the way back.
We left avoriaz at 9am on the Saturday (v busy day) with a Eurotunnel booked at 10pm, the traffic was a nightmare but more so the queues at each supercharger, needless to say we were 90mins late for the train and got allocated to the next available at 230am! The longest day ever which our 7yr old coped admirably well with. We arrived back home in sw London at 4am.
This year we have put our holiday back to Easter but we’ll return on the Friday evening and try and get a third of the journey done that night. Avoriaz itself is car free but the indoor parking has 4 chargers so I had the best part of 7 days to get the car charged back up to 100% for the journey home.(we actually gained charge coming back down the mountain!)
Overall was a good experience - the nav was accurate enough - just don’t try driving from the alps to Calais in one day on the busier days!
Funnily enough having to stop and charge more often than you would in an ice car is better for kids and then the more frequent stops break the journey up, for the driver too. You’re not tempted to do 4/5hr stints.
Pm me if you want any more info.
Oh dear, my worst fears confirmed. That said, Easter should be quieter than Feb half term as the French don't really ski at Easter and French schools aren't on holiday.

You didn't happen to have a roof box did you? And if so, do you recall what your efficiency was?

We've got a LR so should be slightly easier than with the SR... If it ends up being the journey from hell my wife will never forgive me - she already hates the car. :rolleyes:
 
Oh dear, my worst fears confirmed. That said, Easter should be quieter than Feb half term as the French don't really ski at Easter and French schools aren't on holiday.

You didn't happen to have a roof box did you? And if so, do you recall what your efficiency was?

We've got a LR so should be slightly easier than with the SR... If it ends up being the journey from hell my wife will never forgive me - she already hates the car. :rolleyes:

there are definite cost savings - fuel costs far outweigh the electric costs, but still can’t avoid paying the road tolls, about £70 each way roughly.
we didn’t have a roof box on as only one child so 2 snowboards went down the drivers side of the car. At least in Easter the temps won’t be so cold so range shouldn’t be too bad.
Our thoughts to delay to Easter from feb - accommodation is cheaper as are lift passes and hopefully with vaccines being rolled out it might be much nearer to a normality by then!
 

WillyC

Member
Sep 16, 2020
16
12
UK
there are definite cost savings - fuel costs far outweigh the electric costs, but still can’t avoid paying the road tolls, about £70 each way roughly.
we didn’t have a roof box on as only one child so 2 snowboards went down the drivers side of the car. At least in Easter the temps won’t be so cold so range shouldn’t be too bad.
Our thoughts to delay to Easter from feb - accommodation is cheaper as are lift passes and hopefully with vaccines being rolled out it might be much nearer to a normality by then!
I'd recommend Easter as long as you're going high. Much more daylight for the drive, warmer on the pistes for the kids, the resort is much quieter as there aren't really any French kids around. Go with a French holiday provider too (We use Pierre et Vacances) and it's much much cheaper. We usually pay ~£1400 for everything (travel/food/accommodation) excluding ski passes for a family of 4. We share an 8 person self-catering apartment with another family. We've got friends going at Easter with Esprit paying ~£6500
 
You can try and do a bit of planning on ABRP (A Better Routeplanner).
I went too Avoriaz (like @Ben_Sh) to P&V. With the S charging at Archamps, you can go up, leave it in the underground parking (without charging) and drive back to Archamps. While a bit scary at first, you pick up a lot of juice going down and the way back is easy on the charge. I do not fully remember (was 3 winters ago) but we went 90% to 50% on the way up and probably 43% to 18% going down (losing 1% per day sitting in the parking lot).
Add the same issue parking in Zermatt and unable to charge. I usually always plan to have enough to go from and back to the nearest SC and not charge at destination. Charing while parked is only a bonus.
 
All the talk of skiing is making me jealous. But we've decided to give 2021 a miss and wait until things return to some sense of normality. We did a family trip to Levi early this year and then dodged a covid bullet in the Alps in March just before everything locked down. This will be the first missed trip for over 20 years but it's Tamworth Snow Dome this time around :(

Enjoy and take care - oh and open the bubble windows as wide as they'll go!
 
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Oh dear, my worst fears confirmed. That said, Easter should be quieter than Feb half term as the French don't really ski at Easter and French schools aren't on holiday.

You didn't happen to have a roof box did you? And if so, do you recall what your efficiency was?

We've got a LR so should be slightly easier than with the SR... If it ends up being the journey from hell my wife will never forgive me - she already hates the car. :rolleyes:

You lot are definitely braver than I am. I couldn't do the 14hrs with a 6 and a 2.5 yr old. I can't even imagine it.

I wouldn't count on Easter being more quiet this year. We're also booked to go Easter but based on the fact that Christmas has been cancelled and Feb is not guaranteed we know there's been a big shift of bookings to Easter. People also feel the vaccine would have had time to get circulated so banking on that.

I'm just hoping infection rates are down and we can go. Of-course there's the additional cost of testing for an already expensive holiday (looking like over £600 in testing) which brings us closer and closer to cancelling.
 

pdk42

Active Member
Jul 17, 2019
1,211
1,264
Leamington
I suspect the bigger problem will be getting through the channel crossing and convincing the EU to let us in if Covid rates are too high. At present, from Jan 1st it will be difficult, if not impossible, for most Britons to visit any EU destination.

Subscribe to read | Financial Times

"
Most Britons will be barred from visiting EU countries from January 1 when pandemic safety rules that allow free travel within the bloc stop applying to the UK.

The end of the Brexit transition period means that the UK will be subject to a system that only allows non-essential travel from a handful of non-EU countries with low coronavirus infection rates, the European Commission said."
 
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You lot are definitely braver than I am. I couldn't do the 14hrs with a 6 and a 2.5 yr old. I can't even imagine it.

I wouldn't count on Easter being more quiet this year. We're also booked to go Easter but based on the fact that Christmas has been cancelled and Feb is not guaranteed we know there's been a big shift of bookings to Easter. People also feel the vaccine would have had time to get circulated so banking on that.

I'm just hoping infection rates are down and we can go. Of-course there's the additional cost of testing for an already expensive holiday (looking like over £600 in testing) which brings us closer and closer to cancelling.
We drove across Africa in a Land Cruiser 11 years ago.... the people we bought the vehicle off had done a similar trip of 9 months with a 1 year old and 3 year old in the back. I'm not sure I'd do that.
 

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