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How EV Roaming Can Improve the Experience of Company EV Drivers

EV roaming ensures an enhanced charging experience for company vehicle drivers – but how does it work, and what benefits does roaming bring to EV charging?

Mer Charge Card

When driving on our own time, we expect recharging an EV to be quick and easy. When we’re on the company’s clock, though, any delays or issues with EV charging end up impacting productivity. In this article, we highlight how roaming partnerships are vital to efficient corporate travel, including:

  • What EV roaming is
  • How EV roaming works
  • What benefits it brings to EV drivers
  • What benefits it brings to businesses
  • What roaming capabilities Mer can offer your company

 

What is roaming – and how does it work?

The term ‘roaming’ comes from the mobile phone sector and if you know how it works there, you’ll understand how it works with electric vehicle (EV) charging. For mobile phone users, roaming gives them the ability to access other operators’ networks when abroad. This ensures that you can still make calls, use data, and so forth. This is a seamless experience for the user due to the roaming partnerships put in place by your mobile network operator. It means that, when you arrive in a new country, your phone works without you having to log into a new network or even set up a new account.

Mobile phone roaming therefore provided a blueprint for how EV charging could work, but this time it works within the UK as well as outside of it. This is because there are multiple companies like Mer who provide publicly accessible EV charging. However, in the early days these networks were not integrated at all, meaning that if you had a charging card for network A, you could not use it to access charge points on networks B, C, or D.

Mer very quickly recognised this challenge for drivers and has been working hard ever since to create roaming partnerships with other charge point operators.

What are the benefits of roaming for EV drivers?

For drivers, the biggest benefit is a much more seamless and user-friendly charging experience.

We’ve all heard the stories from early EV adopters, who ended up having to carry around loads of RFID cards or install a multitude of apps in order to access all networks. We can’t expect drivers to embrace the transition to EVs if the user experience is frustrating.

Roaming eliminates almost all of this hassle, as it gives drivers immediate access to a far greater number of charging locations – they’re no longer restricted to recharging their vehicles at charge points belonging to a specific network. Drivers know they can arrive at a roaming partner’s charging hub and refill their vehicle’s batteries quickly, conveniently and easily.

What are the benefits of EV roaming for businesses?

Imagine planning a journey to see a potential client and stopping to recharge the car, but realising you don’t have access to that  EV charging network? Or having to plan huge detours into simple ‘A to B’ journeys just to find an accessible charge point? Meetings were missed, time was lost, and sometimes business simply didn’t get done.

Fleet operators and buyers of company vehicles are leading the charge when it comes to adopting EVs, with most new electric vehicles being sold into these sectors. However, EV adoption for both the private and public sector cannot come at the price of poorer productivity. We must make this transition seamless, with as little operational impact as possible, so that the benefits are clear.

If drivers have positive experiences of charging services, they will become better advocates within your business for the next wave of EV owners and company car drivers. This can further accelerate EV adoption within your organisation, helping you to meet corporate net zero targets.

Which charging networks have roaming partnerships with Mer?

Mer has built a comprehensive network of roaming partners to improve the EV experience for customers using  publicly available charge points.

Mer has grown to become one of Europe’s largest charge point providers because we take a customer-centric approach. This extends to all types of customers, whether they are private car owners or company vehicle drivers. And in the case of corporate clients we have to consider their business also as a customer.

We have therefore worked hard to build our portfolio of roaming partnerships, to ensure that we can offer our clients a high-quality EV charging experience and support the corporate transition from fossil fuel vehicles to EVs.

Our most recent integration is with Tap Electric, which has an app designed to help drivers find chargers that are available, reliable and affordable. This collaboration enables seamless access for Tap Electric drivers to charge on Mer’s high-quality AC and DC charge points across a range of locations in the UK.

Tap Electric joins a growing list of EV roaming partnerships, including Allstar, Octopus Electroverse, Paua, and Zap-Pay.

We continuously strive to bring in new partners and explore opportunities to further enhance our roaming partner network.

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