Skip to Main Content


Blink is committed to sustainability.Learn More

What You Need to Know Before Equipping Your Airport with EV Charging

Posted 05/29/2024

The aviation industry accounts for nearly 8% of all transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions, so reducing these emissions is crucial. While fully electric airliners are still decades away, airports can make a significant impact now. By transitioning their fleet vehicles to electric vehicles (EVs), installing EV charging equipment, and encouraging third-party contractors to use EVs, airports can cut tailpipe emissions. Additionally, providing charging stations for employees, passengers, car rental customers, and the general public further supports this initiative.

Here are some key things that facility managers should know about adding EV charging to an airport.

Electrifying an airport is usually a years-long process

While fully electrifying your airport all at once would be ideal, most airports don't have the budget for such a large expenditure. Instead, many airports gradually build their EV charging capabilities over several years as their budgets allow.

Phase 1

Typically, an airport begins by installing one or two chargers along with the “make-ready” infrastructure (wiring, conduits, concrete pedestals, etc.) for future charging stations in the first year. Building all the make-ready infrastructure at once helps avoid rising material and labor costs in the future.

Phase 2 and Beyond

In subsequent years, airports continue to install the rest of their chargers until they complete their electrification plan. With the make-ready infrastructure already in place, expansion usually involves simply ordering charging stations and plugging them into the existing setup. This phased approach allows airports to apply for government funding each year to help cover costs.

Another factor to consider is whether the airport needs major electrical upgrades, such as new transformers. Installing a new transformer is a significant project, and utility companies often can't do it immediately, potentially leading to an eight-month or longer wait. During this time, airports can install other parts of their EV charging infrastructure that don't rely on the new transformer.

Start with the airport fleet

When Blink begins working with an airport, the first step is to conduct an EV charging site assessment. This assessment evaluates the airport’s electrical panel, the available space for EV charging, and the number of vehicles in their fleet.

Here are four common starting points for many airports in their electrification efforts:

  • Rental car areas

  • Cell phone lots where people wait to pick up travelers

  • Employee and customer parking lots

  • Parking for airside ground vehicles

Starting with ground vehicles, such as baggage carriers, tugs, and other small fleet vehicles, helps reduce diesel fumes near the terminal’s air intake. Many airport clients have noted that idling ground vehicles release noxious fumes, affecting the air quality around and inside the terminal. Transitioning these vehicles to EVs leads to cleaner air immediately. Once these fleet vehicles are electrified and the chargers are in place, the next step is to provide charging facilities for the airport’s customers as the budget allows.

Most airports opt for a turnkey solution

Many airports choose a full turnkey solution, where Blink manages the make-ready infrastructure and provides the EV charging hardware under a single contract. Blink has electrical contracting partners throughout the United States, so when airports opt for the turnkey option, they collaborate with a local contractor partnered with Blink.

Additionally, Blink sales managers can connect airport facility managers with each other to share best practices for installing EV charging stations at airports.

There is help available for funding and purchasing

The federal government, along with state and local governments, offers funding options to help airports transition their fleet vehicles to EVs and install EV charging infrastructure. One funding source is the Department of Transportation’s Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure and Advanced Vehicle Grants.

Besides funding, airports can save on EV charging equipment purchases through bulk purchasing agreements or cooperative contracts. Blink has agreements with Sourcewell and the Association of Education Purchasing Agencies (AEPA) to facilitate these savings.

Quality matters

Fifteen years into the EV charging industry, Blink is now replacing outdated equipment at airports that can't withstand the elements and heavy usage by thousands of people each year. Airports need robust chargers that can endure weather conditions and continuous EV charging cycles.

That’s why airports prefer Blink chargers like the Series 8 Level 2 EV Charging Station or the 60kW-360kW DC Fast Charging Station. Blink uses aluminum enclosures that are NEMA 3R or 3S rated for outdoor use, depending on the product. 

Blink’s Type 3R-rated Level 2 chargers are rated for:

  • Indoor or outdoor use

  • Protection against falling rain, dripping water, sleet, snow, and external ice foundations

Blink’s Type 3S-rated DC fast chargers are rated for:

  • The same protection as 3R rated chargers

  • Operation of external mechanisms when ice-laden

At airports, it’s especially important for EV chargers to be able to keep out dust and withstand all kinds of weather.


No matter where you are on your airport electrification journey—whether you're just starting, adding new chargers to existing infrastructure, or replacing non-functional chargers—Blink Charging can help you achieve your electrification goals. We offer expertise, high-quality products, and administrative support. To speak with a Blink airport electrification expert, please contact Blink Charging today.

Share this post