As more people switch to electric vehicles (EVs), it’s important to have efficient charging infrastructure. One way to make the most of charging stations is by implementing idle fees. Idle fees are charges for EV owners who keep their vehicles connected to charging stations even after they’re fully charged.
In July 2023 an idle fees trial will commence in some limited locations within Western Australia.
The trial will feature:
- Changes to the station guidelines (signage and stickers) as well as mobile interface and push notifications to ensure appropriate education for drivers charging at stations with idle fees.
- A ‘grace period’ to allow drivers to return to their car within a reasonable period of time before fees apply.
- A fee per minute of overstay after completion of charging and expiration of ‘grace period’.
We will continue to measure the effectiveness of interventions in terms of how they change driver behaviour and benefit the the EV driving community more broadly.
In a recent survey amongst WA EV drivers, just over 9 in 10 feel positively about idle fees being charged.
Let’s explore why idle fees are a good idea for EV charging.
- Better Use of Charging Stations
Idle fees encourage EV owners to free up charging stations once their vehicles are fully charged. This means more EVs can access the charging infrastructure, reducing waiting times and congestion at popular charging spots. By discouraging unnecessary delays, idle fees promote efficient use of charging stations and make charging more convenient for everyone.
- Improved Availability and Access
Charging idle fees increases the turnover rate at charging stations. This means more availability and easier access for EV drivers who need to charge their vehicles. By reducing idle time, idle fees create a smoother charging experience and lower the chances of frustration or inconvenience due to occupied charging stations.
- Encouraging Considerate Behavior
Idle fees serve as a gentle reminder for EV owners to be considerate and free up charging stations promptly. They promote a sense of responsibility and encourage drivers to practice courteous charging habits. This not only enhances the overall EV community experience but also fosters a positive charging culture that considers the needs of all users.
- Supporting Infrastructure Expansion:
The funds collected from idle fees can be reinvested in expanding charging infrastructure, installing new stations, and improving the overall charging system. This ensures sustainable growth and meets the increasing demand for EV charging.
Charging idle fees for electric vehicle charging brings several advantages. It promotes efficient use of charging stations, improves availability and access, encourages considerate behavior, and supports revenue generation for infrastructure expansion. With the growing popularity of EVs, idle fees are a step forward in creating a robust and accessible charging network that meets the needs of the expanding electric vehicle community.