A new service that enables EV drivers to use a single app to pay for charging across different networks has been unveiled today: Zap-Pay from Zap-Map. Engenie, the UK-wide rapid charging network, will be the first network available on Zap-Pay.
Drivers currently need to use multiple apps and cards to pay to charge on different networks. Zap-Pay will allow all EV drivers to seamlessly pay to charge on any participating network. Many thousands of EV drivers already use Zap-Map to locate chargers across the UK, plan longer journeys and share updates. With the addition of Zap-Pay, drivers will now be able to search, plan and pay, all in one app – a UK first.
Ensuring payment is easy is a key concern for the government and industry. The lack of simple access to different charge points, run by more than 40 networks, risks delaying the mass shift to EVs. Zap-Pay addresses this problem by providing a simple, universal payment system.
Rachel Maclean, the UK Government Transport Minister, said: “It should be as easy for drivers to charge their vehicles at public charge points as it is to pay for petrol or diesel. This is why I have made services, such as the one launched today, a personal priority as we transition to zero emission vehicles.
“As the EV market continues to go from strength to strength, journey planning and paying with one app or membership card must also follow – Zap-Pay will help do just that, propelling us towards cleaner towns and cities and a zero emission future.”
Despite some of the major nationwide networks offering contactless card readers, drivers currently still often need to use multiple apps and cards to pay to charge on different networks. This can lead to ‘charger anxiety’ – concern about being able to access the right charge point when needed. This is an issue for 68% of EV drivers, according to a recent survey by Zap-Map.
Engenie, the UK-wide rapid charging network, will be the first network available on Zap-Pay. It will be followed by a wave of network partners, including ESB EV Solutions, LiFe and Hubsta, in the autumn, all using a simple pay-as-you-go (PAYG) tariff. Zap-Pay will be rolled out across UK networks in 2021, providing unique and unrivalled coverage across the whole country.
Engenie was chosen as the Zap-Pay launch partner due to its customer-focused approach and easy to use charge points that support all EVs currently on the market. At launch, Zap-Pay is live on ten Engenie charge points across four locations – Stratford, Gloucester, Chepstow and Bristol. By the end of September, Zap-Pay will be rolled out across the Engenie network of 150+ rapid charge points.
Ben Lane, CTO and joint Managing Director at Zap-Map said: “More people than ever are buying an EV, but providing a seamless charging experience is essential to accelerate this shift, cut carbon emissions and clean our air. We already buy much of our shopping with the tap of a finger – Zap-Pay means that EV charging is now the same. No one should need dozens of accounts, apps and cards to charge their car. With one simple app, drivers can now simply plug in and the app manages the rest.”
The strength of the EV market has grown even during the COVID-19 pandemic, with EV registrations up by 262% in June 2020 year on year. In contrast, sales of combustion vehicles slumped by more than a third (35%) over the same period.
To support this growth, the EV charge-point sector is set for 29% year-on-year growth to 2030. There are already more than 12,000 charging locations in the UK – more than the total number of petrol stations.
In response to both industry and EV driver feedback, the UK Government is launching a consultation on improving the consumer experience of EV charging, including interoperability between networks.
Ian Johnston, CEO of Engenie said: ”Charging accessibility is critical to accelerating the UK’s transition to electric vehicles. Zap-Pay, a single payment platform for multiple charging networks, complements our commitment to this by adding another convenient choice for customers using our open-access network, which already accepts simple contactless card payment.
“We are immensely proud to be the launch partner for the unveiling of Zap-Pay – the latest step in our shared vision for a consumer-focused EV revolution. With more than 250,000 downloads and 90% of our surveyed EV drivers regularly using the service, Zap-Map is the most used and trusted EV charger mapping tool available in the UK – it is perfectly placed to bring this game-changing solution to market.”
In addition to delivering a simple way to pay for EV charging, Zap-Pay will provide live status updates, charging history, PDF VAT receipts and 24/7 customer support. A support helpline will be provided by EVA Global, the leading emobility service provider.