The solution to paying for drivers’ EV charging costs fairly

21st June 2022
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SMEs all over the UK are looking to make the switch to EV, but a question that’s popping up more and more frequently during the transition is: “How do I pay for my drivers’ charging costs fairly?”

The often fall back to reimbursing drivers is the Government’s Advisory Electric Rate (AER) which even after a recent review remains at 5ppm. This rate is short changing drivers, some by the thousands, because the flat rate simply doesn’t reflect real world costs. 

Another option allows businesses to set their own reimbursement rates, but in order to do this, they have to provide HMRC with evidence of each driver’s charge session, down to the time of charge and tariff rate. Failing this, the driver and business then have to pay benefit-in-kind tax on any amount above the AER. 

The AER and why it won’t ever work

Home, public and workplace tariff rates differ dramatically. You could have one employee on a fixed dual rate where it’s 5pp kWh to charge through the night and 17pp kWh to charge in the day, and another employee with no off-street parking who needs to top up in public who could be charging at as high as 48p kWh. These examples, when equivalent to ppm, differ vastly from as low as 1.7p to 16ppm. 

Therefore, paying 5ppm to every single employee, not taking into account the tariff rate at which they charged at, is exactly why the flat AER won’t ever work. 

Bill shock

Typically, businesses reimburse drivers for their charging costs through payroll, and unless a driver gives their energy supplier regular accurate electricity readings or has a smart meter fitted at home, they could face, what we call, “bill shock”.

Energy suppliers could be waiting months for an actual meter reading, and during this time the bill payer (don’t forget it might not even be your employee who pays the bill) is just paying for estimated electricity consumption. It could be 6 months later that an actual reading is submitted at which point the bill payer is lumped with a huge bill to pay, and let’s face it, it’s likely the reimbursement costs have already been spent by the employee!

Driver pushback

These realistic scenarios could, and we’ve seen this happen, lead to driver pushback. 

For a business who is trying to become more sustainable by adopting EVs, having drivers ask for their petrol or diesel vehicle back, or even worse looking at leaving the businesses, is certainly not the expected direction of travel.

We know business owners want to ensure their employees are treated fairly, but it’s difficult to know where to look, and who to turn to for advice. Paying for EV charging costs is far more complex than paying for diesel and petrol and this shouldn’t be a barrier for forward thinking businesses who are wanting to make the switch to EVs. 

So what’s the solution?

Mina is a multi-award winning payment specialist whose sole purpose is to make paying for EV charging at home, in public and the workplace radically simple for businesses. 

The solution to paying accurately

At Mina we have two main products which simplify the often painful process businesses are faced with when it comes to paying for their drivers’ charging costs.

Mina Homecharge® integrates with drivers’ home chargers and electricity suppliers to calculate the true cost of charging their company EV at home. Our system monitors any changes to a driver’s tariff rate or supplier so that accurate payments are always made direct to supplier.

Mina Chargepass® is the UK’s largest public roaming network dedicated to businesses. Drivers can charge at any of the 7,100 chargers across 2,300 different locations which now include InstaVolt charge points as well as CPOs within the Allstar network. This gives drivers without off street parking, or for those who need to top up on the go, a reliable public network with the use of just one single card.

Drivers don’t ever have to pay a thing. The business receives just one monthly invoice which covers all of their drivers’ charging costs along with access to a Fleet Portal. This provides businesses with insights on charging behaviour including the carbon intensity and emissions produced for each charge through our Carbongrid® reporting.

If drivers need to submit personal and business mileage, this is done via the Mina Driver Portal, where drivers receive a prompt at the end of the month to submit their split. 

The best part, with the Mina One Fleet™ solution, businesses can opt for a monthly subscription which includes the cost of Mina Fleet Approved™ hardware and installation, service and maintenance of hardware, free charging in public with any downtown, along with Mina Homecharge® and Mina Chargepass® all for one monthly fee of £49 per driver.*

So now the question around how to pay for drivers’ charging costs fairly has been answered, don’t get left behind. Our expert team is on hand to answer any questions you may have - get in touch now to stay ahead of the curve and simply transition your fleet to electric.

*Price shown excludes VAT. Upfront installation cost of £100 per driver required. T&Cs apply, see our website for more details.