EV Charging Stations in Wales Guide: Where to Charge and Why
Think of Wales and you imagine beautiful green landscapes with roaming sheep, daffodils and its iconic dragon flag. But did you imagine EV charging in Wales? It turns out that in just a year; the number of charging points has increased by over 5%!
More and more EV charging stations in North Wales are popping up too. Are you a business thinking about your EV strategy? See where you can charge up and why EV charging in Wales is on the up.
Where are EV charging stations in Wales
The UK has 28,300+ public charging stations in total. Of these public and rapid stations, Wales has more than 1,000. That’s at least 33 devices per 100,000 of population according to government data.
How many EV charging stations in North Wales?
North Wales is one of the best areas for EV drivers. The island of Anglesey is one of the best equipped areas for the EV trend according to a 2021 report with 28 chargers for every 100 vehicles.
Other parts of North Wales didn’t make the top 10, however the 2022 statistics have improved. Gwynedd has 99 charge points, making it one of the most EV dense areas of Wales. Carmarthenshire in the southwest, at the top of the list, has 115 charge points.
Where can’t you find EV charging stations in Wales?
To the absolute shock of no local, the Green Desert of Wales is a bit of a blank spot on the EV map.
This area of central Wales has few major towns or cities, but it has many reservoirs and nature reserves. Coverage here is spotty, but still available in some of the villages.
If you’re in an area with not much availability for EV charging in Wales, installing your own charge point could be more convenient. You could get a grant from the government for a massive discount on the installation costs! See our guide to wall box EV chargers to see your best options.
Install a charge point at your workplace for more convenience
Coverage for EV charging Wales has improved over the years but getting charge points at your business makes driving EVs a lot easier.
- Businesses can install charging stations in their office park for their employees to use.
- Some business types, like shops and hotels, can benefit even more from opening these charge points up to the public. This is called commercial EV charging.
- If you’re a home worker and sole trader, you could install a charge point at your home as that would count as your workplace.
Installing stations doesn’t have to break the bank, thanks to the government’s workplace grant scheme. This grant can give you up to £350 per charge point to cover the costs of installation. All you need to do is find the right charge point and a certified installer.
Is EV charging in Wales increasing?
Yes. The Welsh government is keen to increase the number of charge points! England, Scotland and Ireland have all rapid-paced their EV strategy since 2020.
2020 was a rough year for Welsh EV drivers! In 2020, Wales had only four more rapid chargers than Milton Keynes, a city with 265,000 people.
We’re sure that range anxiety was a common fear for drivers then.
But the number of charging points has increased by 6.1% from 2021 to 2022. Wales now has 33 charging devices per 100,000 people which is around the same number as the East Midlands and the South West of England. This puts Wales around the middle of the EV public charging stations ranking chart.
In 2021, the Welsh government released their strategy action plan to bump up the EV traditional of the country and it’s had major benefits for EV drivers!
Funding received EV charging stations in Wales
Cardiff has been front and centre of the Welsh EV and sustainability strategy. EV drivers in and around Cardiff will have few issues making sustainable transport choices.
From 2020 to 2021 alone, Cardiff received £1,296,000 in total from the Ultra-low emission vehicle transformation fund (ULEVTF) with the majority of this going to taxis and public transport.
Cross Hands Electric Vehicle Charging Hub
One of the biggest investments the Welsh government has made is the EV charging hub of Cross Hands in the south-west.
The charging hub is just off the trunk road A48 with four rapid charge points of 50 kWh and one ultra-rapid charger of 150 kWh. The charging fee is around 57p/kWh and is accessible on the Swarco E.Connect network.
The Carmarthenshire Council has been actively involved in its creation and other sustainability schemes, such as all the ebikes in the city as it aims to be carbon neutral before 2030.
The Cross Hands hub itself is the first of its kind in Wales, though we hope more will follow!
iCompario tip: charge cards are your best friend
For businesses in the southwest or other EV-friendly areas of Wales, charge cards make your operations way simpler in one swipe. What charging points can you use? Do you need to install a bunch of apps? Nope! Get multiple charging networks in one card for extra convenience.
How many EVs are in Wales?
Most statistics measure the UK as a whole, so we’ll have to dig a little deeper into the spreadsheets to get all the details on Wales.
We know that there have been 745,000 registered plug-in vehicles in the UK up until December 2021. The Tesla Model 3 is also the most popular electric car with over 78,000 registered cars across the union.
But what about Wales? In the first quarter of 2022, Wales had 10,565 registered plug-in vehicles. This vehicle type can be fully electric or a hybrid type that uses petrol and electricity.
Cardiff and Swansea had the most EVs with more than 1,000 each. Of the 10,565 total, we know that Wales has 3,992 ultra-low emission vehicles. No wonder there’s such a demand for EV charging in Wales!
Free vs paid EV charging stations
Can you charge up your EV for free in Wales? Most of the EV charging in Wales is paid, but there are some free ones dotted around.
Since free chargers are mostly slow, they aren’t the most convenient for business use but can be part of your overall strategy if need be. Here’s what you need to know.
Free charge points explained
This type offers free charging to draw in customers and support sustainability. There are over 5,000 free to use charge points in the UK. The vast majority of free charge points are located in Scotland. Many supermarkets and National Trust locations offer free charging!
Interestingly enough, the National Trust owns multiple EV charging stations in North Wales. So, if you’re visiting Penrhyn Castle, Bodnant Garden or even Snowdonia then you’re in luck. The National Trust has more than 35 free charging stations. All their chargers are slow, but hey you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the sights while your EV is charging up!
While free EV charging stations in Wales are free to use, there are some restrictions most of the time. You may need to pay for parking, be a customer, or have the right RFID card or app to use it.
Paid charge stations explained
You have to pay to use most of the EV stations in the UK. This type of charge point costs you a small amount to use per session.
The average cost per kWh is around 28p, but it varies depending on your location, charging speed and the EV network brand.
The best way to find out how much EV stations will cost you is to download a map or app alongside your charge card.
Why is the number of EV charging stations in Wales increasing?
It’s clear that EV charging in Wales will keep on going up. But what’s all the fuss about? Is it time to hop on the bandwagon or should you pass on the green trend? Here’s why all the spotlight is on charging stations.
1. Strategy for sustainability by 2030
One of the major driving forces behind the growth rate of EVs in Wales is the local government’s action plan.
This plan organised funding and strategy to improve the coverage of charging stations across Wales, including setting a standard for bilingual 24/7 customer care in Welsh and English.
2. Rise of commercial charging
Businesses love new ways to make a profit and those that have embraced EV charge points have a brand new, green way to make the green stuff. Businesses can set and change the fee to use the charge points for their customers.
Slow chargers work well if you have customers that spend hours at your business, while fast chargers are great for shorter time periods.
3. Charge points at home are more convenient
You might have noticed more and more of your neighbours getting EV charging in Wales at home. We don’t have exact numbers on how many of these exist in Wales, but it’s clear that it’s a growing part of EV strategies.
Home charge points are typically slow or fast as most houses can’t handle rapid chargers! These charging stations can also be connected to your home solar panels for more efficient green energy.
Some businesses are installing EV charge points at their employees’ homes. This can work well if you have limited space at your premises or for remote workers. The self-employed, just like other companies, can get a workplace charging grant to reduce the costs of installation.
4. Cheaper company car tax
The time to invest is now! Hybrid and plug-in cars have a lower rate of company car tax. In Wales, 4% is added to your BIK rate based on the CO2 emissions of your car.
The lower your emissions, the lower your tax. As EVs get even more affordable, the number of EV stations will increase to catch up with the demand. For those who don’t want to buy, hiring an EV is a great option.
5. Keep the level of air quality stability
Wales has some of the best air quality rates in the UK with many areas in the north and south-west scoring Low on the air quality scale. However, some areas of Wales, such as Cardiff have tipped into the Moderate rating because of pesky particles known as PM 2.5 and PM10.
These harmful particles can cause asthma and one of the major sources is vehicle exhaust. Electric vehicles and hybrids that burn zero to low fossil fuels don’t release these particles at the same harmful levels as diesel and petrol-only types.
Because of environmental and health reasons, more customers and businesses are making the shift to EV charging in Wales.
Move to electric to meet your green goals
Getting an electric vehicle and installing a charge point can help your business reach its sustainability goals.
But which ones should you pick and what steps should you take first? Compare EV charging points now to see what you should do next.