A surprise and frustration….

CMax officially hit 2,500 miles on the odometer this weekend. I have been struggling getting it plugged in consistently at work, totally on my end of things though…but average mileage is still around 60 MPG.

We were out one evening and I needed to stop and pickup a couple of things, (shampoo, toothpaste) and we had three options — Rite Aid, CVS and Walgreen’s. Well, I decided to go to Walgreen’s because they have charging stations. So we pull up in the designated spot and go to plug in and it asks for a smart phone or a smartcard. WHAT??? So I read on…they charge 49 cents ker kWh for charging. So, in my head I do the math (rounding up to 50 cents to make it easier), CMax capacity is 7 kWh times 50 cents is $3.50. Now while that doesn’t seem like a lot, remember it is a 20 mile range for that $3.50 — compared to 60 miles for a gallon of gas that is $3.23. So, we just went into the store, bought the stuff I needed and left.

I understand that they are in business to make money and that the charging station costs money to install and they want to recoup some of that — but offering a free charging station for patrons of the business with get them the costs of installation and electricity back and more. After all, I am pretty sure they made more than $3.50 on the items I purchased that night…

Anyone else have thoughts on this? What do other businesses that have charging stations do? Do you as an electric vehicle owner choose businesses because they offer free charging over similar businesses? I’d be curious to hear your thoughts.

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