Lidl expands ‘free charging’ network to 200 plugs in Belgium
Retail discounter Lidl is expanding its network of free charging points at its supermarkets from 61 to 100 in the next months. With two connections per charging station, a total of 200 plugs are offered. Clients can use fast-chargers for free while shopping.
Lidl already started in 2012 to install the first chargers for electric cars and e-bikes. Today, it has 61 charging stations operational in Belgium. The 39 extra stations will be installed at supermarkets that have solar panels on the roof, providing a large part of the ‘green’ electricity for the chargers.
New locations to be equipped first are Maldegem, Roeselare, Koekelare, Harelbeke, Putte, Braine-Le-Château, Montegnée, Comines, and Charleroi. The other locations are yet to be determined. They will be spread over the whole country.
Fast-charging for free
The charging stations installed are fast-chargers capable of both DC or AC charging, equipped with the CCS and Chademo type 2 plugs. The latter enables charging most EVs up to 80% in half an hour.
That’s what Lidl sees happening at its chargers: an average charging session takes half an hour. Today, the infrastructure is used 150 times per month on average, but that’s increasing every month. In Brussels, the average loading sessions per month fluctuate around 450. At some locations, clients are already queuing, Lidl says.
Charging is free for clients of the supermarket. No loading pass or account is needed to use the chargers. For electric bikes, the charging stations are equipped with lockers, accommodating three e-bikes to be plugged simultaneously.