Apps and Websites to make your EV life much easier

Here we will share the most used apps and websites by us. After owning EV in Europe for a while we tried all sorts of different websites and apps and gained bit of experience which sources are best in different situations. We will be updating this list as often as we will find something useful and worth a share, so if you find this information useful please come back later for some new updates. So lets have a quick look at our top useful apps and websites list.

Websites and Apps for finding charging stations and route planning:

PLUGSHARE app and website
If you haven't heard about this project, you are probably new to EV world. It is very handy app and website for EV route planning and finding charging stations. Also for checking route elevation (website only), which is very important for EV trips. Charging station list is updated and managed by users. You can leave comments and upload your own photos of the charging stations and surroundings. It helps to find charging stations much easier. Also users often report damaged or faulty chargers in comment section helping others to know about charger problems. This often saves someone from getting stuck with empty battery next to the faulty charger. Another good feature, users can list their own private charging stations with the contact details to help other EV mates, if they got in to the trouble and need emergency charge. This is probably most used app and website all around the world, but strangely enough not in Germany. We found that there are still plenty german charging stations not listed in it. And sometimes information is outdated. So in Germany we have to rely on other information sources. It might change later, but for now we use this one only as a backup in Germany.

Another great EV route planner. It collects information of charging stations from different well trusted sources so we found it's quite accurate. If you press on the charging station it takes you to the source website. It got few handy options and filters for trip planning. You can even set your vehicles battery degradation level and it will take this into account while calculating how often you need to stop for a charge. Also if there is a long gap between two chargers and you risking of not reaching next charger, it suggest what maximum speed you should drive on this route section to reach next charging point. Best thing for us - we found it's very accurate in Germany. Hopefully they will make the smartphone app also. That would be very handy.

PLOTAROUTE website (mobile device friendly)
Another route planner. But this one is not dedicated for EVs as it's got no charging stations listed. But we like it because of very easy, quick and detailed elevation check of the planned trips, which can be saved as a picture or PDF into your computer or mobile device. And you can always check it later while on the trip even if you got no internet connection. As we had a trip through Alps in 2018, we found it very critical to have a good elevation information of the planned route. Elevation affects EV range a lot, especially in cold weather or for vehicles with degraded battery as regenerative power is reduced a lot in these conditions.

Website with the most charging locations in Europe, and a lot of information about each charging station. Big downside, it's only in German language. But even without knowing German you can easily understand how to use it. Also got EV route planner, which we found ok, but we don't use it that often as there are not many options to choose route calculation. Suggested charging points on the calculated route are bit too optimistic, also no elevation graph calculated for the route. We mostly use it to find charging stations near by while on the route as it got most completed list of Europe charging stations. There are few Android apps which use their database, we found these two works best: NEXT PLUG (only in German language) and CHARGING STATIONS.
PAYMENT cards and charge ACTIVATING Apps we use:

NEWMOTION card and app
In our opinion this is "must have" card and app if you travel the Europe. We used it in Belgium, Switzerland, France, Germany on many chargers almost without any bigger issues. Actually that was the only card we had when we took our Nissan Leaf for UK-Germany road trip. The only downside, recently prices went up a lot for charging. For example 12 Euro activation fee on some motorway chargers is just a complete nonsense. So we try to use it less now and looking for alternative payment methods. But it is good to know we can always find a charger around which can be activated with NewMotion app or card.

MAINGAU card and app
Most reasonable prices for charging in Germany and some other European countries. Prices get even better if you live in Germany and use same energy company for your property electricity. This is most used card by us at the moment as no other provider can offer same prices. Let's hope they won't change them in near future. We highly recommend it if you live or going to travel European mainland.

IZIVIA (previously known as SODETREL) card and app (old app)
That's one of the cards we've used on our 3500km trip to France. It covers a lot of French charging stations, also can be used in other European countries. Downside, prices not very clear, sometimes you will only find out how much it costs you only after you done the charging. While in Alps, we used one charger twice, first time we paid by credit card, which cost around 4 Euros, and the second time we gave a Sodetrel card go. Big mistake, as we got charged 16 Euros for same amount of energy as a first time on the same charger. So you have to be careful and check twice if it's really worth using this card and not the alternative payment method. But again, this card gives you a peace of mind while traveling France. We did 3500km EV trip only using our credit card, Sodetrel card, NewMotion card and Newmotion app.

"Must have" app if you going to use chargers on UK motorways. Reasonable prices and easy to use app. All chargers got free WiFi hotspots, so you can activate charging with your phone even if you run out of phone credits. Downside - app sometimes becomes unresponsive and you need to use emergency number to call and ask to cancel the charging session. Also be aware, every time you do a charging, £12 gets on hold on your bank account for few days. Make sure you got enough money on the linked bank account if you going to use a lot of charging while on the trip in UK. We didn't know this and got stuck on the last charger before our Ferry in Dover. It took few calls to Ecotricity and my bank to sort the things right. This cost us a lot of time and we almost got late to our Ferry.

If you ever going to travel trough Poland you definitely need this card as it covers most of Polands rapid chargers. Also covers a lot of German chargers. Prices a bit too high and got no smartphone app to make charger finding much easier.

These two apps are very helpful if you need a charge while in Czech Republic. Don't get confused, they booth look similar and shares similar name, but both operate different chargers. POLYFAZER app is for chargers operated by Polyfazer and POLYFAZER DIRECT app is for chargers operated by CEZ and others. POLYFAZER appcan be used on some chargers in Slovakia and Romania and also got ability to set the charge limit. For example you can set limit of some kWh after which the charging session will be terminated.

Banner Photo by Rami Al-zayat on Unsplash

© Copyright EV-OLUTION