Plug In Baby

We live in a small village in Mid Wales. A delightful place, full of friendly people and a pub.

Visitors

Since moving here, a lot of friends and family have been to visit which is always nice. Usually, it’s for a few hours although a couple from the U.S. did stay overnight with us last year. Recently, a distant cousin and his wife, who emigrated to Australia about twenty years ago, have been in touch to say they are hoping to visit the U.K in the Spring. All being well, they plan to call on us as part of their month-long tour here. Great, it’s been so long since I’ve seen them there’ll be a lot of catching up to do. Probably a stay of a couple of nights at least.

Charging

Now for the bad news. They are planning on hiring a new ‘all-electric’, one of those touring camper van things. I suppose they are to be commended for trying to do the ‘green’ thing, but there’s something niggling away at me. I think the number of charging sites around mid-Wales for electric vehicles can be counted on the fingers of a boxing glove. My distant cousin, who might just be relegated to a distant friend who I can’t remember, says there’s no problem with charging the vehicle as you can plug directly into a domestic electric house socket! Hang on, plugging a huge minibus into my house mains and leaving it eat my electricity overnight is not going to happen.

Where To Charge?

Although commercial chargers that are dotted around the place, more so in England, can charge a car within 3 hours, plugging into a house main can take up to 15 hours! In my terms, that is a small fortune. Then there’s the problem when they go off sightseeing around Wales. I know what will happen, they won’t be able to find a charging point and head straight back here and whoomph!! Plug into my electricity. I might be giving the impression that I’m a tight old curmudgeon and truth be known, I am. This is a big vehicle though and not a two-seater motorbike.

Out Of Pocket

My arithmetic has never been up to much, but I reckon that to charge the minibus, it will cost me about £20 overnight. As I say, I’m no mathematician, so I’m probably wrong and the cost will be double that. Add that up over at least a week of too-ing and fro-ing and that’s £140!! I know how things will pan out too, you haven’t a clue how much to charge them for the use of the electricity so they leave £30 cash on the table by the door. I fear their visit is going to be an expensive one. I’ll probably have to sell my petrol-driven car to finance it.

If you’re interested in electric camper vans:

Photograph by vanlifer.com

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46 Comments
  • Jay
    September 9, 2020

    I’m not really into sleeping in vans myself. Or tents, or trailers, or hotels that aren’t boutique.

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Me neither, although I do enjoy a comfortable hotel.

  • Scribblans
    September 9, 2020

    I’m sure you can come up with some sort of bespoke ‘bicycle-powered dynamo’ or hydro-electric mill wheel type charging system for them? I was going to suggest something solar powered but then remembered it was mid-Wales.

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Lol, I notice some vehicles charge themselves, but not many. 😕 Thank you, Scribblans. 😃

  • jenanita01
    September 9, 2020

    Honesty will be the best policy here, Trev… just tell them you can’t afford to charge their new baby without going bankrupt!

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      I think you’re right. I will have to say something, thank you 😊

    • anotherdaywithjulie
      September 9, 2020

      I agree. You should be honest and upfront before they arrive so you are not stuck with the bill.

      • Trev
        September 9, 2020

        Thank you, Julie. 😊

  • Lou Carreras
    September 9, 2020

    A lot of my retired friends are on fixed incomes, and they too have stopped being coy about the cost of expensive visitors dropping in for several days. One might hope that visitors with special needs would ask about obvious things they need like charging stations. But if not, perhaps researching the closest spots – to help them plan their trip might be a cheaper idea- being plugging in to a domestic source is awful expensive. Maybe they’ll take the hint and offer to pay – or to plan better.

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      I agree, Lou, thank you. 😊

  • Herb
    September 9, 2020

    Well, I think the other commenters that have said to just tell them what you’re thinking are pretty much on track. Researching where the charging stations are is another good idea. It seems possible also that they just never thought about the cost to you.

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Thank you, Herb. We have researched where the other stations are and there’s only 2 we can find within a 20 mile radius. 😊

      • Herb
        September 10, 2020

        Well, here in Colorado Springs it’s so spread out that 20 miles is literally a drive across town.

        • Trev
          September 11, 2020

          It’s a bit like that here, but smaller. Thank you Herb 😊

  • Yetismith
    September 9, 2020

    My only experience with a camper van was disastrous, though that was decades ago. Not for me, who wants to drive a thing like that around? Your friends will come to park and then want to borrow your car… Over here you see people in their camper vans actually towing a car for use when they get to wherever…the whole thing seems like too much to think about. I shall await the story with interest!

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      I’m with you there, Yeti. Thank you 😊

  • Invisibly Me
    September 9, 2020

    My relatives in Oz were supposed to visit for I think 6 weeks this year. They had to put it off last year because of health reasons & then this year, just as all transport and accommodation was booked, the pandemic struck. They’re also hoping to do it next year. I don’t think I’ve ever even seen them before! Sounds like you guys will have a lot of catching up to enjoy too 😄

    As for the electric camper, yikes. I hadn’t thought of the green version of those before. Up to 15 hrs is a long time for a charge. You could jokingly say that you’ll send the bill by email, wink wink. They’ll think you’re joking. By the time they land back down in Oz you’ll be able to ping the email invoice from a safe distance!
    It may be a pricey stay, but it’ll be worth it I’m sure.

    I love the sponsored searches that appear at the end of your post : Motorhomes, electric cars, camping sites… soup recipes! 😂

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Thank you as always Dear Caz. 😊

  • Pandora
    September 9, 2020

    “I might be giving the impression that I’m a tight old curmudgeon and truth be known, I am” Don’t worry I’m “young” and I would not let them plug their car into my electricity either!

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Thank you, Pandora. 😀

  • Rosaliene Bacchus
    September 9, 2020

    I understand your concern, Trev. I would be, too. My ex-husband once left me with a huge telephone bill for his overseas calls to Guyana during a two-week stay at our home in Brazil. Hope you find a way of dealing with this situation without hurting your relationship with your distant cousin and his wife.

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Thank you, Rosaliene, I’m sure we will work something out. 🙂

  • Peter's pondering
    September 9, 2020

    All of the above Trev!

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Thank you, Peter. 🙂

  • SueW
    September 9, 2020

    Oh poor you! I can’t wait for next spring! 🙂

    • Trev
      September 9, 2020

      Thank you, Sue. 😀

  • Kanjika
    September 10, 2020

    I’m so invested in this story now, seems like they forgot to consider the cost that you’ll incur it’s a great overhead. Well, I hope they find this blogpost. Best of luck with your guests, I hope you’ll have a not so electrifying time and will be waiting for the part 2.

    • Trev
      September 10, 2020

      Thank you, I will follow up with a post in the Spring. 😊

  • christinenovalarue
    September 10, 2020

    Super sympa !

    • Trev
      September 12, 2020

      Thank you, Christine. 🙂

  • Going Batty in Wales
    September 11, 2020

    Oh dear! What a dilemma! It would be so much easier if it was your kids or a close friend but these people obviously have no idea of your circumstances or how different mid Wales is from an urban area. Good luck!

    • Trev
      September 11, 2020

      Thank you and yes I agree 😊

  • philosophy through photography
    September 13, 2020

    One of the disadvantages of having close relatives!

    • Trev
      September 13, 2020

      Close relatives with big electric vehicles. Thank you 😊

  • caahli
    September 13, 2020

    Oh poor you! I perfectly know that situation: it’s awful! 😞😞🙂🙃🙂

    • Trev
      September 14, 2020

      Thank you, Caahli, I’m sure I will work it out with a good ending. 🙂

  • gulfcoastpoet@gmail.com
    September 13, 2020

    Trev, You’ve already gotten a lot of good advice. I agree that you should talk to your visitors before they come. Good luck! <3 They may be clueless about the cost and about the realities of budgeting during retirement.

    All the best! Cheryl

    • Trev
      September 13, 2020

      Thank you, Cheryl. I listen to your every word. 😊

  • blackbird212012
    September 16, 2020

    I wonder if Frankenstein had these problems

    • Trev
      September 16, 2020

      Lol, he would if he were around today. Thank you, Michael 😊

  • KINDNESS WISDOM
    September 16, 2020

    Wales is a beautiful part of the world. Thank you Sir ☺️

    • Trev
      September 16, 2020

      It is, thank you. 😊

  • iammrsshecky
    September 16, 2020

    I had an RV for about 10 minutes. It was all self sustained so when I went places with no electric the solar worked instead (called boondocking here). BUT there is still the septic to deal with every few days. It was fun but needless to say beings it was just me and the dog using it, I sold it to a family of 4 they love it. I felt a great relief. Now I hit the hotels that have food and cocktails and housekeepers. The older I get the less I want to work on vacations.

    • Trev
      September 16, 2020

      10 minutes is more than long enough. Thank you Mrs Shecky. 😊

  • America On Coffee
    September 25, 2020

    A most interesting bus, I must say!🤔

    • Trev
      September 25, 2020

      Thank you. 😉

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