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Why Hotels Are Essential to This Year’s Summer EV Travel

Posted 05/19/2023

The summer travel season is upon us and that means millions of Americans hitting the road for a good old American roadtrip. Every year, even more of these trips are taken by electric vehicles (EVs), as people continue making the switch. By 2030, McKinsey even predicts that there will be as many as 48 million EVs on American highways! Hospitality owners and managers are essential to the global switch from gas vehicles to EVs as travelers search for hotels with EV charging stations.

Four reasons why hotels need EV charging stations 

There are a few different reasons why hotels must provide EV charging infrastructure to guests. 

1. Attract customers 

Providing EV charging capabilities may seem more of a perk than a necessity. But as more drivers choose EVs, businesses must facilitate the charging of those vehicles to attract and retain customers. If your competitors are providing EV charging, and your hotel isn’t, you’re basically guaranteed to lose business to those competitors.   Hotels are the type of business where people with EVs will absolutely want to charge their vehicle. This is because the majority of EV charging takes place at home where cars are parked for several hours at a time while the driver sleeps. And what is a hotel, but a home away from home?   If drivers have their EVs parked overnight, you can bet they’ll be looking for places where they can charge overnight.   In addition, on average, EV drivers tend to have more disposable income than their counterparts with gas vehicles. If you provide them a place to charge their vehicles, they will be more likely to stay and spend that disposable income at your hotel restaurant, shop, and other services. Not only will EV chargers encourage repeat guests, but they can also increase occupancy rates and overall room nights. 

2. Be an environmental leader in your industry 

EV charging stations also help attract customers, as more and more consumers are choosing to do business with companies that actively support social justice and environmental causes. Installing EV charging infrastructure is an easy and logical way for hotels to support clean transportation initiatives.   You may even be eligible for sustainability-based tax incentives and other perks like LEED certification points and carbon credits

3. Fill the EV charging infrastructure gaps 

The United States needs approximately 20 times more charging stations by 2030 than in 2023. While public charging infrastructure is helpful everywhere, it’s especially needed in rural areas.   If your hotel, motel, or bed-and-breakfast is located in a rural area, you’ll be adding some much-needed EV charging infrastructure in the region, and you may be eligible for tax incentives or funding from federal, state, or local government entities. In addition, installing EV charging stations brings tourism to smaller towns and allows drivers to travel off the beaten path. 

4. Add another source of revenue

Not only are EV chargers a necessary guest amenity, but you can use them to generate revenue from anyone looking to charge their EV.   Blink’s IQ 200 allows hotel owners to offer charging to hotel guests and/or public users, and the Series 8 features a credit card reader to make it even easier for drivers to start charging. You can even install a charging station that can display advertising, like the Blink Vision, allowing you to sell advertising on it from nearby businesses, or advertise your own specials such as a rewards program or discounts at your restaurant. 

What type of EV chargers should a hotel provide? 

While many EV drivers are already plugging their Level 1 charging cables into wall outlets for emergency charging, this is not recommended for any commercial facility. That is because draped cables can be a tripping hazard or cause an electrical fire if the driver’s charging cable is not maintained. In addition, plugging into an outlet presents a lost revenue opportunity, as drivers will use electricity without reimbursing the property. We recommend that if you are already seeing guests plugging their EV into a power outlet, you should install a few commercial Level 2 charging stations.  Level 2 chargers make the most sense for hotels to install for overnight guests. Depending on the vehicle, it can take about four to eight hours to charge an EV with a Level 2 charger, which is perfect for an overnight guest. In North America, Level 2 chargers use the standard J-1772 plug, which is compatible with all plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and battery electric (BEV) vehicles. With the Blink Network, you can set a usage fee to your chargers to ensure that drivers pay for the electricity consumed by their vehicles.   Higher end hotels with a popular hotel restaurant or valet service consider installing direct current fast chargers (DCFCs). These chargers use direct current to charge EVs in under an hour. However, it is important to note that DCFC are not compatible with all EVs, and that installation is much more expensive than a Level 2. Programs such as NEVI (see below) can help qualifying hotels reduce the cost of adding this amenity. While most overnight guests will probably use the Level 2 chargers, some may prefer to use DCFCs. You can also open these up to the general public and charge a fee for their usage.   

Don't forget the network

The best part about networked EV chargers? Your hotel will be added to mapping services like PlugShare, Google Maps, the Blink Network, and select vehicle navigation systems to tell EV drivers about your chargers. With the Blink Network, you will be able to fully control all your Blink EV charging stations from an intuitive dashboard. And if you opt to allow the general public to use your chargers, you can even have special pricing for guests and charge the general public a bit more to use them. 

What help is available for installing EV charging equipment at hotels? 

There are several federal funding programs available to qualifying hotels, motels, and other hospitality businesses in the United States. 

Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Tax Credit 

The Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Tax Credit provides eligible businesses a tax credit up to 30% of the cost of installation up to $100,000. The credit has certain stipulations that must be met to be eligible to receive the full 30%: 

  • Equipment must be installed in these locations: 

  • The census tract has a poverty rate of at least 20%; or 

  • “Metropolitan and non-metropolitan area census tract where the median family income is less than 80% of the state median family income level” 

  • Businesses must meet prevailing wage and apprenticeship requirements 


The federal National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program is a funding program meant to help facilitate the installation of EV charging equipment every 50 miles along major travel corridors across the country.  To be eligible for funding from this program, a business must be located along an alternative fuel corridor, within one mile of a designated state or federal highway, and install at least four 150kW DCFCs. Blink Charging offers a turnkey solution to help businesses take advantage of this program at upfront cost. Click here to learn more.   There are also many state and local incentive programs  that you can use to add EV charging to your hotel. 


With more EVs hitting the road this year, hotel, motel and bed-and-breakfast owners should start providing charging equipment for drivers. Providing EV drivers a place to charge will give them a reason to choose your establishment over your competitors, show that you are a forward-thinking business, and help the country meet its EV charging infrastructure goals.   Ready to get started? Contact Blink today to schedule a consultation.

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