Staying Current, 5 Things to Power Your EV Knowledge
About the Author:
Judy Kenninger heads Kenninger Communications and has been covering the vacation real estate industry for nearly two decades.
Because vacation ownership resorts provide an elevated experience, amenities initially deemed luxuries (microwave ovens, wi-fi, big-screen televisions) debuted early at our resorts. Now, with electric vehicle (EV) ownership surging, recharging on vacation takes on a whole new meaning. Wyndham Destinations has installed EV chargers at nearly 30 resorts. “The chargers at our California resorts get daily usage,” says Doug Bowman, manager of sustainability.
It's not just a California thing. Breckenridge Grand Vacations (BGV), where many owners hail from Texas and Colorado, has installed 12 charging ports at four stations across its three main resorts. “They are in daily use,” says Jeff Edwards, sustainability and energy programs coordinator.
Here’s a five-point primer to get you on the road.
- Registrations for new EVs soared 60% in the first three months of 2022 even though new car registrations were actually down 18%. EVs now account for 4.6% of all passenger vehicles sold in the U.S. Even if you’re not in a drive-to destination, your owners may be arriving in rental EVs. Hertz just announced that by the end of 2024, 25% of their entire global fleet will be fully-electric.
- There are three types of EVs. Hybrid electric vehicles(HEVs) are powered by a traditional internal combustion engine and by an electric motor that uses energy stored in a battery. The battery is charged by the engine and through regenerative braking. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) are similar to HEVs but have a larger battery that allows them to travel on electricity alone. The battery can be charged by plugging in, regenerative braking, and the engine. All-electric vehicles (EVs) run on electricity alone. They are powered by an electric motor that uses energy stored in a battery, which is charged by plugging in and through regenerative braking.
- There are three ways to charge an EV. Level 1 Chargers are just your standard 120 Volt wall outlet, and they can take 11-20 hours to fully charge an EV. Level 2 Chargers use a 120V outlet (similar to a clothes dryer outlet), and they take 3-8 hours to charge. Level 3, also known as fast chargers, can charge an EV within an hour. “We have mostly Level 2 Chargepoint stations, and with an adapter, Tesla vehicles can use them, too,” Edwards says.
- How much should you charge for a charge? Ultimately, the HOA boards decide on how much to charge guests. Bowman shared that while many Club Wyndham properties currently don’t assess a user fee, WorldMark by Wyndham resorts charge a nominal fee to cover the cost of providing the service. At BGV, the fee covers the actual kilowatt hours plus a little extra for the stations’ eventual maintenance or replacement.
- Government incentives can offset the cost of installing an EV charger. To research federal and state program, start your search at https://afdc.energy.gov/laws/search. Bowman reports that at some resorts in California, incentives have covered as much as 50% of the installation costs. Be aware that some incentives require that the general public as well as resort guests have access to the chargers. Electric utilities may also offer incentives such as rebates on charger installations or free Level 2 chargers. Reach out to staff, who often have helpful advice for commercial accounts.
By Judy Kenninger