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Road trip from NJ to Williamsburg, VA.

Discussion in 'Mid-Atlantic' started by jaguar36, Jun 16, 2015.

  1. jaguar36

    jaguar36 Active Member

    Apr 10, 2014
    #1 jaguar36, Jun 16, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2015
    I found the trip reports that other folks had posted very useful when planning my trip, so I thought I would share our experience.

    We drove down from NJ to Williamsburg, VA on 6/7 and returned on 6/12. I was thrilled when we were packing the car up with how much space there was in it. We were able to bring some extra 'what if' sort of stuff, because of all the room in the trunk and frunk which came in quite handy. Traveling with two little kids takes a ton of stuff.

    We left on sunday morning, stopped at the Newark, DE charger to get a full charge with the hopes of making it to Glen Allen. Newark was hopping, nobody was waiting but we got the last spot. image.jpg

    We were getting excellent mileage, about rated mileage. The nav did a great job routing us around some traffic, and suggested going on Rt 1 to get around the woodbridge area. At the same time we needed to make a pit stop, so I figured we'd just go over to the Woodbridge SC and top up. That was a mistake, it took forever to get from Rt1 to the charger, and there aren't any convenient bathrooms close to the charger. Getting back on 95 was easy though once we were done.

    Did a Max charge at Glen Allen, which is in a great spot, walked over to the pet store while it charged which my oldest enjoyed. From there we drove down to williamsburg, where we spent the first two nights at a Hampton inn, which had no charging available. I tried to drive slowly and not use the AC while we were going around town, as I was worried we wouldn't be able to make it back to Glen Allen. From there we went to the Great Wolf Lodge which I had read had an outlet available but hadn't confirmed. Finding where they would let us charge was a huge hassle, and took longer than it would have just to drive back to Glen Allen and charge. Eventually we got setup though and I thought everything was great. Course the next morning I get an alert that charging stopped, and a bit later got a call from maintenance that someone had tripped over it and broke it as I posted about over here. They were great about replacing it though, I just hope this hasn't soured them on letting other folks charge there in the future. I did talk to the GM though, and he seemed interested in setting up a dedicated charging spot.

    On the way back we stopped again at Glen Allen and got some ice cream, skipped Woodbridge, and stopped at Bethesda for dinner, which was near our hotel. Next day we went to the DC Zoo, visited some family, back to Newark for a potty break and top-off and back home.

    In the end I'm very hesitant to travel with the Tesla again, unless we will be staying with family or very close to a SC. Even if a hotel says they have charging, the possibility that it is being used or broken makes it way to stressful for me. Its a shame too because the ridiculous amount of space in the car makes it great for traveling with little kids.
  2. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

    Apr 3, 2009
    I just did the trip to GWL back on 6/4. I'd been in talks with them for months prior to get a HPWC and be part of tesla's destination charging program. Getting there and being offered an extension cord from behind a shed that my car wouldn't accept was beyond annoying.

    We intended to just charge with Chademo at the nissan dealer, but there's a toyota dealer right behind the lodge with free charging out front. Charged to full on the first night, and then again on the last night.
  3. linkster

    linkster Active Member

    Apr 22, 2013
    #3 linkster, Jun 25, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2015
    Most hotels have a few outdoor 120V duplex outlets on their property. As a general rule, they really shouldn't be relied upon for charging (too many issues to go into here).

    After reading y'all's posts, I met with the assistant HMIC last Thursday to discuss installing EV charging stations and Tesla's destination charging program in detail and a possible parking lot site location with proper signage. I truly believe GWL realizes the importance of proper/safe charging facilities to continue to attract out-of-town EV guests since he emailed me the next day with additional questions for GWL to move forward. I asked the GWL to kindly notify me upon completion of new charging facilities so I could report back to y'all. I also stopped by Casey Toyota (btw, GREAT people!) next to GWL where I gave an official a ride in "Veronica". He said they have no restrictions on charging nor do they want any electricity reimbursement (I'd probably bring them a dozen donuts, but that's just me).

    I agree that driving around in an S with the air-conditioning turned "off" on 90 degree days (which actually has very little effect on range, unlike an ICE car), with children, and stressing about charging must be downright terrible and is unacceptable. I always recommend at least one (confirmed), or two back-up plans when traveling. I have installed an HPWC (before the price drop OUCH!) specifically for PlugShare/Model S guests (I use a cool runnin' 14-30 for 50,000 oil-free miles) and specifically wrote in my PlugShare profile "emergencies welcome". In the past, owners have pm'd, e-mailed, or iMessaged me ahead (usually) of their planned trip to Williamsburg to insure that i will be in town for either their primary or back-up charging.

    Charging in Williamsburg:

    Colonial Williamsburg Parking Garage, (2) stations, free charging 30a 208v, $1/hr. garage parking fee, open 6a-12p. (recommend)
    New Town, CHAdeMO (JUNK! along 1/2 the others across the U.S.), reviews are awful and Frankenplug couldn't even charge a Leaf at the opening ceremony (stay away)
    Williamsburg Lodge, counted (9) parking garage 120v outlets however, only (2) appear to be EV dedicated, for Hotel guests only (maybe)
    Kingsmill Resort, (2) [email protected] HPWC and a Clipper Creek [email protected] J1772, for resort guests only (highly recommend)
    Williamsburg Woodlands, well marked EV parking, 120v, (good reviews)
    Private residences (4) currently listed on PlugShare (no past experience)
    Local campgrounds within biking distance of GWL (no past experience)
    Nissan CHAdeMO (no past experience)

    Saving oil, supercharging for free, having mucho storage space, enjoying a fabulous/quite ride, along with great Tesla/EV exposure are all too much to give up on due to a less than stellar experience IMO.

    I hope this long winded post helps you and others.

    btw, if you're coming out of Salisbury to Williamsburg, I would recommend a range charge (we do 95%) until the Norfolk Super opens later this summer

    Good-Luck !

    pls don't give up
  4. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Voltage makes me tingle.

    Nov 3, 2009
    Smithfield, VA
    Awesome linkster!
  5. pmoa

    pmoa Member

    Apr 10, 2015
    We are going to Williamsburg in July and we were wondering where to destination charge.
  6. AMPUP

    AMPUP Member

    Mar 27, 2014
    Dunn Loring, VA
    Thanks linkster, have been considering GWL for sometime but resistant. Stayed at kingsmill back when I had a volt, they let me plug into where the golf cars were before they had dedicated chargers, so appreciate the update on their facilities.
  7. linkster

    linkster Active Member

    Apr 22, 2013
    YAAY! Just for you :biggrin: (and hopefully many, many others).

    Kingsmill Gets Electric Vehicle Charging Station | Williamsburg Yorktown Daily

    As Todd can attest to, these parts of Virginia have come a long way in 2 short years. Supercharger in Norfolk next!

    Team Tesla, We R E E L Y need a Hampton Roads (Newport News or Norfolk ) SC.

    (destination charging help/pitching desperately needed in Maine)
  8. CatB

    CatB Member

    Mar 2, 2013
    Alexandria, VA
    And til then, I've had great luck with the Oyster Point garage charging station (L2, on Plugshare - Linkster, you turned me onto that one). They have 2 spaces and connections, I've seen one other car there once, and I've never been ICEd out. Love the French coffee shop around the corner. Did serious damage at the EMPTY (!!) Ann Taylor store on Black Friday. And the Tex-Mex and churrascaria are both quite decent.

    And yes, eagerly awaiting the Norfolk SC :)
  9. daniel-r-a

    daniel-r-a Member

    Nov 23, 2014
    Bloomfield Hills, Michigan/Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Hey everyone--

    I would have responded earlier, but I didn't see this thread until just now! I just want to let you all know that if any of you ever need to charge in Williamsburg, feel free to PM me so I can get you access to my NEMA 14-50. I've had about a dozen plugshare users come by in the last year (everyone has been so nice!) and I'd especially love to be able to help out any TMC friends!


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