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What is a fair ‘overstay fee’?
 
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Orkney implemented an overstay fee of £5 in a rather heavy handed manner and we are keen to see it finessed, so this is asking for thoughts and experience.

The problem is that the CPS software used to apply the overstay fee if it detected you were still connected after the designated charge period of 1 hour on a RAPID and 3 hours on other chargers. The Council has agreed to raise the 3 hour threshold to 4 as this allows people to nip out and move the car at lunchtime if they need to... we are waiting for this to be implemented over a year after agreeing it! :-(

However the bigger issue is whether the hard threshold for triggering a fees is the best way of discouraging overstaying. It is easy to be a minute or two late and if one has over stayed there are several reactions. Irritation that you were late followed by resignation that you are going to be fined and then followed by an urge for revenge which may mean you feel no compunction to move the car if it is not 100% full as you may as well stay because you have been penalised! I know the latter emotion is spiteful, but I certainly understand it.

We have been thinking that a progressive fee would be better. If it was 10p/minute for the first hour then that would be £6 if you didn't move. It would not cripple you if you were 5 minutes late and it would still provide an incentive to shift the car even if you have overstayed a bit.

The fine should ramp up faster on a RAPID as that really does need to be cleared as soon as possible, but the same principle should apply.

Does anybody have any thoughts on whether this would work?
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Hi Neil the guidance we issue currently states:

"Our position is to recommend time-based fees, applied after the
maximum charge session time each host permits. A solution that we
would consider as the optimum starting point would be to charge £1
per minute overstay, with a ten-minute grace period. Anyone ending
charging within the period would not be charged, but as soon as the
overstay exceeds that ten-minute window, the minimum overstay fee
would be £10. The fees would be collected as part of the standard
transaction through the ChargePlace Scotland management system.
Each host would need to define the maximum charge session length
for themselves. Our guidance is summarised in Table 1.
The ideal would be for overstay fees to be universal across all hosts.
Recognising that it would however be problematic to allow the total to
increment indefinitely, we proposed the upper limit that can be applied
to any single infringement be set at whatever the local Penalty Charge
Notice standard rate is. This would hopefully be appropriate to ensure
that the cost of appeals and their administration is kept to a minimum."

This has been implemented in ELC and other LA's and has been very effective, where appropriate notices are posted. Complaints to the LAs or to us are about 3 in over two years. The key aspects are the ten-minute grace period and the upper limit for the progressive fee. We haven't discriminated between Journey and Destination chargers, although the position is needing to be reviewed. The object is not to generate revenue from overstay, but to ensure maximum availability and energy delivered revenue for the owners. Feel free to comment here or DM on the guidance doc https://www.eva.scot/assets/documents/EVA_Scotland_Tariff_Guidance_for_Scotland_2019_Issue_1-1.pdf

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Neil Swanson

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I've been working in Orkney and Shetland last month. Government funded social research: health surveys.
My normal charging routine is to plug my car on the nearest slow charger to my accommodation, go for a beer and a meal, and leave the car overnight. With a 64 kWh battery, it might need to be there for some time 😉
I don't really think this is inconveniencing anyone, and I am certainly not planning to jump out of my bed to move the car at say 3 am...
My view is that 12 hours is a reasonable time limit on destination chargers, I don;t know about rapids but I'd have thought 1 hour is a bit too tight in remote and rural locations: 90 minutes seems more reasonable.

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I'm a new personal EV user (but previously had access to an EV work vehicle) and new to this site, so I've just found out about overstay charges when I've been looking at chargers for my likely destinations.
With my work vehicle, I previously had experiences where one of my preferred chargers was occupied overnight by someone who lived virtually next to it - yes, I work nights so I needed some late night top-ups. I also had occasions where seemingly remote/isolated chargers were occupied with no obvious place for the owner to be "hiding" at 2am.
That certainly made me think about what I should do......try unplugging their car......try plugging in and see if I could get at least some charge.....and generally how blocking chargers could be achieved.
Given chargers are definitely lacking in many locations, some sort of incentive to minimise hogging them is definitely required......but to promote EV uptake it shouldn't be ludicrously punitive.
I'd have thought that since so much depends on registration/apps and by the very "connectedness" of current EVs it shouldn't be that difficult to send nudges to owners - "You have been charging for 30 minutes" or the like (to give a baseline for a rapid charger) then, every 10-15 minutes or whatever, another nudge. Annoying, but if you know you have 3-hours on a slower charger, you'd just delete until you'd seen enough nudges to check in on your charge status.
After any imposed time limit, a grace period seems reasonable to allow for that time when you have to use an app and it takes a few minutes because your mobile network runs slow or you're just running 2 minutes late.
Think about it, ICE drivers will happily park at a pump, fuel up, go to the kiosk to buy a coffee & snack (or a bit more at convenience store style stations) before paying and nobody's charging them for an extra gallon of fuel.
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I don't use apps: loathe them all and hate smartphones.
That said, I am pretty used to old-school parking meters, and it isn't rocket science to pay for three hours in advance if that is how long you plan to park, and just keep an eye on that old-fashioned thing called a wristwatch 😉

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We all need to be very considerate to other EV owners. Not so long ago a Red Nissan Leaf was parked at a 2 point 22kw charger and it wasn’t even plugged in. I parked perpendicular to the back of the leaf and my lead was just long enough to reach the charger. I sat in the car for an hour, the Leaf owner never returned. Now I would have left my car there blocking the Leaf in but I was also blocking the other car in (who was charging). My charge was at 10% so to fully charge I would have been there for approx 8 hrs, but maybe the Leaf owner was someone who needed to get to a hospital that afternoon, we just don’t know other peoples circumstances, so we all need to be considerate.

To find a car parked in a EV charge point space and not using the charger (a little difficult to apply an overstay charge), or a car which has fully charged and is there for 30 mins over a 100% charge should have to pay an overstay amount…£10 an hour, or part of would surely encourage us to be ‘considerate’. I would like to believe I am a considerate EV owner and if necessary I would get up at 3 in the morning to move my car….I can always go back to sleep afterwards. Lots of people work at night and and may well need a charge before starting their shift at 3 in the morning. There are lots of charge points around (a bit sparse in some areas), but there are also a lot of EV’s around, probably approaching 20% of cars out there. So please be considerate, move your car when it is charged and hybrid owners, please don’t put the car on charge in the evening and leave it there all night.
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Christopher Clark - 01 June 2022 09:39 AM
We all need to be very considerate to other EV owners. .


I agree, some simple ettiquette is essential: in that situation if I were working nearby I would probably just lease a phone number on the screen of both cars, asking them to ring when they needed out.

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