The Best EV Charger for Your Airbnb or Vacation Rental in 2024

Join the eco-friendly movement in the Airbnb world by getting the best EV charger for your short-term rental.

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Since the summer of 2021, an electric vehicle (EV) charger is an amenity for which guests can filter their Airbnb search. With the growing number of people who drive electric cars, adding this amenity will give you a huge advantage over your competitors who don’t make that investment. 

However, an EV charger isn’t a must-have amenity for Airbnb, so there is less information about which EV charger works best for short-term rentals. After researching the EV chargers on the market, our top pick for the best EV charger for Airbnb is the ChargePoint Home Flex EV Charger.

Why Should You Buy an EV Charger for Your Airbnb?

An EV charger at your vacation rental can save guests a lot of time and effort. Instead of searching for EV stations and wasting half an hour or more at the gas station or a parking lot until the car is charged, they recharge it while they’re relaxing at your Airbnb.

Just last year the U.S. sales of hybrid cars jumped 76%, and the registration of electric vehicles shot up 60% in the first quarter of 2022. Over 850,000 Airbnb listings already have an EV charger as an amenity, so you’ll jump on the wagon at just the right time.  

If you are the only vacation rental owner in the area with an EV charger (or one of the few), you’ll automatically beat the competition whenever guests filter the search for this amenity. Even guests who don’t need an EV charger can be enticed by this sustainable feature as it demonstrates your environmental awareness.

Available Incentives for Installing an EV Charger at Your Airbnb

If you’re based in the US, you can cut down on your expenses through both federal and state rebate programs. 

According to the federal rebate program, if you install a home EV charging station, the tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act will be up to 30% of the total cost of hardware and installation (with a max of $1,000). Starting in 2023, the tax credit for business and home installations will apply to other EV charging equipment as well, such as bidirectional chargers. 

There are also state-specific incentives that can vary in amount and can cover even up to 100% of the equipment and installation costs. For example, the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance gives its residents a credit of 50% or reimburses them up to $5,000 of the cost of installing an EV charger. It’s worthwhile to check what kind of incentives are available in your state. 

Should You Charge for Guests Using Your EV Charger?

When it comes to covering the costs of the electricity from the EV charger, you have two options: either you pay for it or you charge the guests. If you don’t want to charge guests extra, you can increase your price per night fee, but that may be unfair to guests who won’t be using the charger.

If you’re going to charge for it, you can set up a flat fee or charge based on usage. For the latter, you’ll need to set up an integrated app like EVmatch or a similar service so you can approve or deny charging requests and track usage. An easier option is to set up a flat fee, so your guests can even pay upfront.

Factors to Consider When Buying an EV Charger for Your Airbnb

There are a few key things you need to sort out to find an EV charger that will suit your vacation property:

Available Outlet – You should consider whether you already have an available outlet or if you will need an electrician to install one (which is an extra cost). Most electric vehicle chargers require a NEMA 14-50 outlet. This type of outlet is commonly used for electric ovens and is often found in RV parks and campgrounds. It’s installed onto a dedicated 50A circuit to match the rating of the plug. 

Type – You can get an unconnected or smart charger. An unconnected charger acts as a connector between the electric source and the car and is easy to use and install. However, it won’t give you insight into usage, so this only works if you’re going to offer guests complementary top-ups or set a flat fee.

Smart chargers allow you to track usage through an online dashboard, and you can process payments through mobile pay apps or credit cards. Some let you choose between monetization and non-monetization mode if you want to offer certain guests free charging. 

Level of Connection – There are three levels of charging you can offer which differ in speed and power. Level 1 is the minimum. It relies on a 120V socket and is the slowest rate of output. 

The recommended level is Level 2. With a 240V outlet, the charging will be quicker. Most households receive power at 240V already, and even if you need an electrician to install an outlet, this will be a fairly easy task. 

Level 3 chargers are known as DC rapid, fast, or superchargers. They require more power (480+ volts and 100+ amps) and are usually found on public charging stations. 

Adaptability to Various Charging Connectors – When it comes to equipment, you should check out the charging connectors. J1772 is the industry standard, and in North America, every electric vehicle uses it.

Ease of Use – Guests should be able to use the charger and pay for the usage intuitively. You should instruct them before or at their arrival where they can find the charger and how they can pay for it (if you’re going to charge).

Installation – Some chargers you can just plug in while for others you’ll need an electrician to set it up. Bear in mind the cost of installation when browsing for chargers. 

The Best EV Charger for Airbnb and Vacation Rentals

Our top pick is a best seller with thousands of rave reviews on Amazon. The ChargePoint Home Flex Level 2 Electric Vehicle (EV) Charger is simple to install, and your guests will be able to charge their cars nine times faster than with a standard outlet. An additional benefit for Airbnb owners is that this charger qualifies for rebates.

ChargePoint Home Flex Level 2 Electric Vehicle (EV) Charger

Here’s why ChargePoint Home Flex EV Charger is the winner for Airbnbs and vacation rentals:

Works with All Cars – Whether your guests drive a Tesla, Toyota Prius, Chevrolet Volt, BMW i3, or any other electric or hybrid model, they’ll be able to charge their vehicle with the ChargePoint charger.

Safe and Energy Efficient – This charger is Energy Star certified and UL listed for electrical safety. You’ll also get 24/7 customer service support for 3 years.

Smart Charging – With the ChargePoint app, you can access all charging data, use Alexa Voice control (great for smart homes), set reminders, and even schedule charging at off-peak times of the day when electricity is the cheapest.  

Easy to Install – An electrician can install this charger outdoors or in the garage in no time. You’ll need a NEMA 6-50 or 14-50 outlet and circuits rated 40A or 50A. If you have a different circuit rating, such as 60A-80A for 48A-50A charging, you can remove the plug for hardwired installation with ease. 

Other Airbnb EV Charger Alternatives

If you want a charger with WiFi or an inexpensive alternative, we’ve picked out two more options that suit that criteria.

If you like smart functionalities, the JuiceBox 32 Level 2 Smart Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station with WiFi is a great choice. You can easily connect it with the free JuiceNet app to control and monitor the charging remotely. The app will notify you when the car is fully charged, and you can set reminders, keep track of usage, and more. The simple display will show the guests when their car is topped off. 

There’s also a voice control functionality that works with Amazon Echo and Alexa. This charger will charge the vehicle six times faster than a regular outlet. JuiceBox is both UL and EnergyStar certified, and it qualifies for dozens of utility rebates across North America.

A less expensive but still efficient and reliable option is the Grizzl-E Level 2 EV Charger. It is also the easiest to install as you just need a simple 14-50R outlet to plug in your Grizzl-E. The charger is UL labeled so you can qualify for a rebate. 

If you want the same simplicity, but with WiFi connectivity, you can get a WiFi version that works with Charge Lab software. This will allow you to check the progress of the charging session, create schedules, and track energy consumption.

Final Thoughts

The effort you put into offering extra amenities for your guests will pay off in the form of charging higher rental fees, getting great reviews, and securing return bookings. Show that you support sustainable travel and that you’re keeping up with eco-friendly innovations by getting an EV charger. With our top pick, the ChargePoint Home Flex Electric Vehicle (EV) Charger, your guests can charge their cars in no time, and you can stay on top of the situation with ChargePoint’s intuitive app.

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