US: Enel X, an advanced energy services arm of the Enel Group, has partnered with automated EV charging solution Ok2Charge to provide co-branded smart electric vehicle charging stations in vacation rental properties around the world.
Enel X will provide EV charging stations to Ok2Charge as the first solution designed specifically for the vacation rental market, allowing guests to charge at the property rather than searching for a charger. The integration of the Ok2Charge smart EV charging platform with major property management systems provides what is being described as an “industry-first” fully automated EV charging solution as a property amenity that can be employed across several properties.
The agreement delivers a solution to managers and owners of vacation rental properties to meet the needs of the growing number of EV drivers.
Giovanni Bertolino, head of e-mobility, Enel X North America, said: “With demand for EVs continuing to grow, confidence with longer range battery electric vehicles, and the popularity of vacation destinations within driving distance, EV drivers want to know that they will have easy access to smart charging throughout their journey. Through our partnership with Ok2Charge, we’re enabling EV drivers to travel on their own terms and providing them with peace of mind that they’ll be able to charge at their destination.”
Airbnb recently reported that more than 850,000 of its listings include chargers among their amenities, while over 500,000 unique searches were made for EV chargers between June and December in 2021. According to a recent Enel X survey, over 1,500 JuiceBox customer participants shared their electric vehicle and charging preferences for driving-distance travel – more than 52 per cent said that they use Airbnb.
Charging is provided based on guest and reservation data to fully automate access and control. Reports can be exported for each location in a company’s portfolio, enabling property managers to monitor usage, energy consumption and financial performance.
Ward Prickett, co-founder and COO of Ok2Charge, said: “We are pleased to partner with Enel X to offer smart EV charging as an amenity so our clients will be able to stand out from the competition in the crowded vacation rental market. This not only enables EV drivers to seamlessly charge their vehicles while on vacation, but it also reduces the environmental impact of tourism, a win/win.”
Guests are given the option of selecting EV charging as an add-on amenity, with additional revenue stream for property owners and managers to view real-time statistics in a centralised location. The platform ensures that guests who choose the amenity will be allowed to charge their vehicles through a flexible payment structure paid through the Ok2Charge app.
Property owners can also optimise energy demand to reduce costs and carbon emissions within certain markets.
Property management software platforms including Escapia, Guesty LiveRez, LMPM, Streamline, Track and VRM have already integrated Ok2Charge as their smart EV charging solution.
Through the collaboration, Enel X and Ok2Charge will manage thousands of rental properties, across the single family, multifamily and vacation rental segments, by offering a smart charging solution that provides drivers with accessible charging and property owners with a property management system.