College Park, Maryland – Electric vehicle owners are beginning to stop in at campgrounds to “refuel” their vehicles on longer trips, according to the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds. Most private campgrounds have 50 amp/240 volt hookups, which can charge most electric vehicles in about four hours.
Some campground owners are looking at offering electric vehicle (EV) charging to build their businesses, and many are reporting a gradual increase in inquiries from EV owners who are considering using the campgrounds to recharge their cars. Travellers who do this typically have adapters with them, enabling them to plug into the electric pedestals that campgrounds often provide with their RV sites.
“We’ve been getting quite a few calls from people wanting to charge their vehicles at our park,” said Russ Yates, who owns Holiday Park Campground in Greensboro, Maryland. “Most people who come to our park to recharge their vehicles come up to our store and buy snacks. Or they get on their laptops and send email. But most of them simply take a nap in their vehicle or they walk around our park and sit by the river.”
Yates has installed a separate 240-volt plug on the side of the campground office so that people can recharge their vehicles without having to park in a campsite. He charges US$8.50 for a four-hour charge.
“While the concept of using campgrounds as refuelling stops for electric vehicles is enticing for many park operators, if the concept takes off, campgrounds may need to eventually install dedicated receptacles for electric vehicles so as not to tie up too many campsites with electric vehicles,” said Wade Elliott, president and CEO of Utility Supply Group, which produces RV and EV pedestals. “I see the idea of recharging electric vehicles as an opportunity for campground and RV park operators. But if more and more of these vehicles come into their parks merely to be recharged, park operators may want to put in a string of three or four pedestals near to their store or swimming pool and not to use their campsites to do this.”
The National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds plans to create a list of parks that offer electric vehicle charging services on its GoCampingAmerica site.