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Electrifying Adventures: A Journey into EV Exploration

Written by Sian Whyley


Embarking on a new journey in the EV industry as a Marketing Executive has been a steep learning curve, and information overload. From the innovative technologies to the sustainability focus, it's an industry that aligns with my passion for progress. However, there's a tiny detail – I've never driven an electric vehicle before, let alone ventured into the realm of charging stations and range concerns. When Simon Tate proposed using the Fuuse-mobile for an extended period of time, I thought it was a great idea to familiarise myself with the industry.

I had a weekend planned in the Lake District so thought it would be the perfect opportunity to experience what it's like to drive an EV and charge whilst staying over at The Swan Hotel & Spa at Newby Bridge.

The first thing I came to realise is that the journey starts before the journey actually starts! You need to plan ahead, which is great for me as I like to be organised. I started by downloading the Zapmap app to help navigate the public charging network, which at first seemed quite overwhelming. This allowed me to see ahead of time the EV charging infrastructure in my area, as well as for my journey and my destination. I then checked to see how much range the Fuuse-mobile currently had, which was 74 miles, although I technically had enough to get home and to the hotel, I thought it would be best to charge whilst I had the opportunity to.

  • Searching the zapmap app for local chargers
  • Dallas Road Lancaster EV Charging

Sometimes the best knowledge can come from people who have real hands-on experience, so I looked to my fellow colleagues to help me with the initial charge and get the car ready for the journey ahead. Matt from sales was more than happy to accompany me to a car park local to the office, I was surprised to learn that we don’t (yet!) have charging facilities at the offices. However, upon arrival we discovered the two EV charging spaces obstructed by an internal combustion engine vehicle (ICE), a situation commonly referred to as being ICED. Fortunately, a nearby car park offered EV charging, and we secured an available spot. Plugging in the car proved surprisingly straightforward, with only one fitting orientation and using the cable that you have to carry around with you in the boot. Using the Allstar charge card for the initial charge provided insights into a different payment method, as I hovered the card over the charger logo, initiating the charging process. Surprisingly, I discovered that parking fees were separate from charging costs. After setting a two-hour parking limit, I walked back to the office, realising the practicalities of EV charging in real-world scenarios.

After two hours I returned, unlocked the car, stopped the charging, and stowed the cable in the boot. The additional charge added 61 miles, bringing my total range to 135 miles – ample for my journey home and to the Lake District. I embraced the ease of driving an electric vehicle (EV) – a seamless experience like handling any conventional automatic car. Despite the promising recharge, I found myself vigilantly monitoring the range number, aware of its gradual decline in comparison to the miles I was covering. It's intriguing how the transition to electric comes with its own set of considerations, yet the actual driving remains as straightforward as operating a regular automatic vehicle.

  • Fuuse car charging at the Swan Hotel in Newby Bridge
  • EV Charger at the Swan Hotel


Embarking on my journey to the Lake District on a sunny day with clear blue skies and armed with a 125-mile range for a 36-mile trip, I adopted a conservative driving approach to maximize the battery life. Despite the picturesque sunny day and clear blue skies, I was hesitant to use fans and the radio to avoid impacting the battery's efficiency, but decided to use them anyway as I would normally drive a car. Upon arriving at the Swan Hotel and Spa with a reduced range of 75 miles, I felt so relieved, we’d made it! Notably, I observed the challenge of locating easily accessible chargers in busy car parks, as they were neither well-signposted nor clearly marked. The initial disappointment of finding two EV spaces occupied gradually lifted as I secured a spot after registering the vehicle for parking. A quick survey revealed five other EVs in the immediate vicinity, highlighting the evident demand for more accessible charging infrastructure.

With several different ways to pay for EV charging, this was the first time I was navigating it alone. From RFID cards to mobile apps and credit card payments, I found the possible options overwhelming. However, with new legislation, paying for EV charging is becoming more convenient. The legislation aims to streamline the payment process by providing unified payment platforms, eliminating the need for multiple apps and RFID cards. This shift promises to simplify the EV charging process, making it more user-friendly and accessible.

Views on the West Windermere Way

I scanned the terminal's QR code and followed on-screen instructions, where I registered and logged in. After topping up my account with £20 via my bank card, I initiated the charge. The website confirmed the start of the session and its active status. While the car charged, we explored High Dam along the new West Windermere Way, conveniently starting from the car park. Returning after two hours, with an hour until check-in, we opted for a coffee, allowing the charge to continue until funds were fully utilised. Upon check-in, the car had completed its charge, extending the range to 188 miles—plenty for the journey home and work. I relocated the car to another spot, freeing up the charger for others.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my EV driving experience, gaining valuable insights into the real-world challenges faced by EV drivers, including range anxiety, bay hogging, and ICE vehicles obstructing charging spots. However, I believe there's still a long way to go in making the EV driving experience more reliable and less intense. This can be achieved through the evolution of charging infrastructure, including the expansion of EV charger networks and the implementation of fines for those who obstruct charging spots with ICE vehicles. Additionally, offering advanced bookings for charging spots could enhance reliability and instil confidence in EV drivers, ultimately facilitating the transition to electric vehicles on a larger scale.

Looking to see how chargepoint management software can help maximise the value of your chargers? Get in touch today!



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