ESB to increase the price for charging an electric vehicle at its public stations
Daragh Cassidy
Head Writer

For the second time this year, the ESB is to significantly increase the price for charging electric vehicles at its public charging stations.

In unwelcome news for owners of electric vehicles (EVs), the ESB has announced that it's increasing its prices for EV charging at its public stations countrywide for the second time this year.

The ESB operates two charging structures at present: one for pay-as-you-go (PAYG) customers and one for members who pay a monthly fee and get access to cheaper charging rates. And both are to increase significantly in price from 20th December.

Cost to the consumer

All prices are going up. And by over 50% in some cases. 

PAYG customers will now see prices range from €0.563 to €0.682 per kWh depending on the speed of the charging. This compares to a charge of between €0.375 to €0.461 per kWh previously. Before May, when the ESB last increased its prices, charges ranged from just €0.268 to €0.37 per kWh!

For those with a monthly subscription, prices will now range from €0.509 to €0.617 per kWh. But the cost of a monthly subscription will remain at €4.79 a month.

The overstay fee will remain at €8. Though this was increased from €4.60 only in May!

The move will especially penalise those EV drivers who currently do not have access to charging at home, and who rely on public charging points.

If you want to learn more about how to charge your electric vehicle, check out this article.

The company said the increase is being driven by the unprecedented and ongoing increase in energy costs over the past 12 months.

In a statement, the ESB said:

We want to reassure you that we have done our very best to maintain prices by absorbing the continued increases in the wholesale energy market over the past few months.

Unfortunately, sustained higher wholesale energy costs throughout Europe means that we continue to experience a very substantial increase in the cost of wholesale electricity, which we must reluctantly pass onto our customers.

We are determined to continue offering the best value we can for customers and will keep our prices under constant review in the coming months.

Here’s a closer look at the older rates compared to the new ones. Fast charging, which delivers speeds of up to 50 kW can charge a standard electric car to 80% within about 40 minutes. 

  New PAYG rates Previous rates New Membership rates Previous rates
Standard Charging
Up to 22 kW, (€/kWh)
€0.563 €0.375 €0.509 €0.336
Fast Charging
23 - 50 kW, (€/kWh)
€0.647 €0.432 €0.586 €0.394
High Power Charging
51 - 150 kW, (€/kWh)
€0.682 €0.461 €0.617 €0.423
Monthly Subscription* None None €4.79 €4.79

*Minimum 12-month contract

Why increase prices now?

Public charging of EVs was free in Ireland for around 10 years up until October 2019 when ESB first introduced a fee for the use of its public charging network.

Rising electricity prices meant the ESB announced significant price increases of over 50% in May of this year. So the latest news marks the second price increase in just over six months.

The ESB said the increase is being driven by the unprecedented and ongoing increase in the wholesale cost of electricity in Ireland, as well as in Europe, over the past year. 

These increases have led to a subsequent increase in the ESB’s operational costs, it has said, which means it's unable to provide the service without increasing its prices.

What will this price increase mean to customers?

In terms of what it’s likely to cost consumers, a return trip from Dublin to Galway (400km) charging 340km with a home charger and topping up the remaining 60km using an ESB fast charger on a PAYG plan, will now cost around €16.

The same journey using ESB fast chargers to power an EV’s full journey on a PAYG plan will cost around €38.

An equivalent diesel car will cost around €40 for the same trip. So as you can see the cost benefit for running an EV is falling fast if you don't have access to home charging.

Nevertheless, the price increase comes as growing numbers of people shift to electric vehicles. According to the Central Statistics Office, in the first 10 months of the year, 22% of all new cars licensed for the first time were electric or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles compared with 16% in the same period in 2021. 

If you’re interested in investing in an electric vehicle or a home EV charging device, take a look at the different grants available

Cut your energy bills with

Despite on-street charging prices increasing, you can still cut down on your driving costs by switching to a cheaper supplier, especially considering most people charge their electric vehicles at home. 

Head over to our energy comparison page to see how much you could save today by switching gas and electricity providers. Thankfully, switching is quick and easy, and it’s possible to save hundreds on your annual energy bills.

Looking to save more? We also have comparison services for broadband, banking products and insurance types such as car insurance

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