Yesterday POD Point launched the UK’s first nationwide Pay As You Go network for electric vehicle charging.
The POD Point Pay As You Go (PP PAYG) network is free to join, has no monthly fee and only requires a refundable £10 balance for account activation.
The PP PAYG network will use SMS text to access charging points, and stop and start charging cycles, providing electric and hybrid vehicle drivers with what the company calls the first nationwide, card-less charging network.
The PP PAYG network is based on the Oyster PAYG model introduced by Transport for London, which provides seamless system allowing occasional passengers the same convenience as daily commuters, without the overhead of a monthly charge.
For POD Point CEO Erik Fairbairn, “the case for nationwide PAYG is strong. Most electric or hybrid vehicle owners use public charge points occasionally, in areas they don’t visit every day – yet existing charging schemes are either regional, or charge a high monthly fee regardless of use. The PP PAYG network will deliver a nationwide charging network that makes economic sense for electric and hybrid vehicle owners to join – and charge point owners will benefit from increased use of their charging facilities.”
The PP PAYG network will have over 750 charge bays by the end of the year, which should make it the largest UK public charge network. By the end of 2012 charging points belonging to Plugged in Places regions such as Source East and Plugged-in-Midlands networks will also be accessible via PP PAYG network.
Starting in 2013 all newly installed POD Point charge points will be on the network, increasing the number of charging points to over 4,000 by 2014.
Registration (either online or by phone) involves providing credit card and mobile phone details and loading a refundable balance of £10 onto the account. Drivers can charge their cars within minutes of registration. Billing will be to the credit card provided on registration, and drivers will be able to monitor their account through a secure online portal provided by the POD Point network.