roadtrip sunset

National Road Trip Day: Celebrate with a US road trip

May 28, 2021 | 5min read

This National Roadtrip Day we encourage you to plan a 2021 road trip in your electric car. If you don’t have one, consider this your sign to invest in one! Gas prices are at a 7-year high* and it is unknown when or if they will come back down. Although this has many rethinking a 2021 road trip, if you drive an electric car, you are in luck. 

Why are gas prices so high in 2021?

You may be wondering why gas prices are so high right now. There are many factors that contribute to the rising gas prices, starting with higher demand. Now that COVID-19 restrictions are beginning to loosen, more people are traveling regionally and domestically. Global demand for oil has surpassed expectations and gas prices have had to adjust to the newfound demand. Gas traders are also adjusting gas prices according to new export agreements. The U.S. election results are another likely contributor to the rising prices. The Biden administration has been very supportive of the renewable energy industry, pushing for incentives for electric alternatives. This has gas traders adjusting prices because they fear the new administration will inhibit U.S. oil production.

In more recent news, a cyberattack on the Colonial Pipeline’s 5.500-mile system caused a massive closure and prevented millions of barrels of gasoline, diesel, and jet fuels from being transported to the East Coast. Shutdowns of this magnitude can drive up gas prices, depending on how long they last.* 

An electric car is the perfect road trip companion on National Road Trip Day

The good news is that if you are considering an electric car, you may not have to worry about the rising gas prices. Batteries have you covered, and many manufacturers now offer 8-year/100,000-mile battery warranties.* Instead of paying the rising gas prices during your road adventure, you can plan to charge at charging station stops in your itinerary. Plugshare* and other online sources can help you find stations near your route.** Don’t worry, charging stations are quickly growing throughout the US. As of February 2021, there are 40,582 charging stations in the US and 97,589 charging outlets. California actually has the most power outlets in the country: 32,000 of them! If you live in California, a road trip inside the state makes a lot of sense. 

Don’t forget to enjoy some electric car (EV) perks on National Road Trip Day. Some destinations have specially designated parking spots for EVs. These can come in handy during pit stops. Some states, such as California and Utah, have a Clean Air Vehicle (CAV) decal program that allows you special access to the carpool lane. Free valet parking and hotel charging is also available by some participating hotel chains for EVs. 

How much money can an electric car save you?

A study by ConsumerReports* found that EV fuel savings alone can be $4,700 or more during the first seven years of ownership. Additionally, over the lifespan of most electric cars, they could save  you between $6,000-$10,000. Actual savings depend on what gas vehicle you are replacing with an EV. The study also found that maintenance and repair costs on an electric car are lower when compared to a gas vehicle. See how much you could save by switching to an EV by using this savings calculator*. 

During your road trip, you may see some great savings when charging. Public charging stations can be free, pay-as-you-go, or subscription-based. Some vehicle manufacturers also provide complimentary public charging at participating locations. For example, if a charging station charges $1.50 per hour to charge on Level 2 (the most common method) and $0.26 for DC fast charging, charging a 40-kWh battery with a 150-mile range would cost $0.08/mile on Level 2 and $0.09/mile for DC fast charging. As of the publishing date of this blog, California’s average gas price is $3.73 per gallon*. That means it would cost about $0.14/mi for a gas car, assuming you are driving a 25MPG gas car. Savings could be even greater if you are using a free charging station or if you are comparing to a higher gas price per gallon. 

How far will an electric car take you?

It is a misconception that electric cars won’t take you long distances. Technology advances have made roadtrips in EVs possible and affordable. Here are some EVs with the mile range you can expect on a full charge.** 

  • Tesla Model 3 – 310 mi
  • Tesla Model S – 370mi
  • Chevrolet Bolt EV – 238 mi
  • Nissan Leaf – 226 mi
  • BMW i3 – 153 mi

As you can see, a full charge can take you a good distance. If you start in Los Angeles, CA, a Tesla Model 3** or Model S** could take you to Yosemite National Park with no need to charge until arriva (based purely on expected mileage, of course – your actual driving experience will vary based on road conditions)l. 

Here are some popular road trips you could potentially take on National Road Trip Day with only one or two charges along the way.

  • Los Angeles to Yosemite National Park (279.4 mi)
  • Los Angeles to Monterey (319.6 mi)
  • Flagstaff to Albuquerque (322.5 mi)
  • Salt Lake City to Zion National Park (308 mi)
  • Portland to Oregon (174 mi)
  • Key Largo to Key West “The Road to Paradise” (97.2 mi)

Of course your electric car could take you even further, but you may have to plan additional charging stops.

The future of road trips**

There are many exciting electric cars planned for the future. Tesla, one of the most popular EV manufacturers, plans to offer a more affordable $25,000 Tesla model* in the near future. If you are a true road trip fanatic, you may be even more excited to hear about the Lightyear One*, a long-range solar-powered EV designed to be grid-independent. Its manufacturer claims you could drive for months without needing a charge. The first mass-produced solar-powered car* by Aptera Motors is set to roll out in 2021. According to the manufacturer, it is expected to go as far as 150 miles with a 15-minute charge. 

Freedom Forever is excited for the bright future of electric cars, especially because there are many benefits to pairing an EV with solar. 

Ready to go solar? Call us at 800-685-1850 or click below to get started

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**Any references to any third-party trademarks is for informational purposes only and is not intended to suggest or imply sponsorship, endorsement, affiliation, or approval by the trademark owner(s). The information contained herein is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be, and should not be, construed as an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy any products referenced herein.