How EV-Friendly Are Famous US Road Trips?
There’s nothing better than a road trip, with the wind in your hair, not a care in the world, and no schedule to keep.
Road trips provide you with a sense of freedom as you travel on your own time, to the places you choose. You decide when you leave, where you go, where you stop, how long you stay, with your favorite playlist, of course!
For those choosing to do a solo road trip, hitting the road clears your head and helps you relax. Road trips are the perfect time to think and take in the beautiful scenery.
Furthermore, for individuals with an Electric Vehicle (EV), it's important to be aware of how EV-friendly the different road trips are. For those considering buying an EV, we have explored where the most electric-friendly U.S. states are.
Here at FindTheBestCarPrice.com we have completed all the hard work and explored the most famous U.S. road trips. We ranked them as to the suitability for driving an EV.
Need more EV statistics and trends? Check out our roundup of 50 electric vehicle stats here >>
Table of Contents
Methodology: How We Made Our Picks
We looked at five popular road trips in the United States and their recommended stops along the way for each trip, the distance between them, how many EV charging stations each stop has, and how many hotels with EV chargers each one has.
Using the estimation that an EV has on average, a 200-mile radius, we used this to calculate any additional stops that would need to be made to charge between stops.
All the factors we explored were:
- Number of Stops
- Total States Passed
- Total Number of EV Chargers Across Stops
- Total Distance (Miles)
- Estimated Duration
- Additional Stops Required
- Total Hotels with EV Chargers Across Locations
- Total Charge Stops Required
- Cost to Charge for the Road Trip ($0.04 per mile)
Finally, we took all of these points into account and assigned each location a score out of 45. We then ranked the destinations by how many points they received, to help you make the most informed decision for your next EV road trip.
Route 66 (also known as the Will Rogers Highway) came in first and scored 28 out of 45 points for EV road trips. It is one of the first national highways for motor vehicles in the United States and one that became an icon in American popular culture.
The highway opened in 1926, however much of the route was not paved until decades after. It represents a plethora of American ideologies such as freedom, migration West, and the loneliness of the American heartland.
Some highlights of Route 66 include the Oklahoma State Capitol Building, Devil's Elbow Bridge on the original Route 66, the Cadillac Ranch, and Santa Fe.
- Number of Stops: 12
- Total States Passed: 7
- Total Number of EV Chargers Across Stops: 1,822
- Total Distance (Miles): 2,192
- Estimated Duration: 32:34:00
- Additional Stops Required: 6 (ex. St James)
- Total Hotels with EV Chargers Across Locations: 56
- Total Charge Stops Required: 18
- Cost to Charge for the Road Trip ($0.04 per mile): $87.70
San Francisco to Utah
San Francisco to Utah came in second place and scored 26 out of a possible 45 for EV road trips. The distance between San Francisco and Utah is 592 miles, and the road distance is 739.7 miles.
San Francisco is located on the West Coast of the United States at the north end of the San Francisco Peninsula. Utah is a landlocked U.S. state which is bordered to the east by Colorado, to the northeast by Wyoming, to the north by Idaho, to the south by Arizona, and finally to the west by Nevada.
Some of the great stops from San Francisco to Utah include Sacramento, Napa, Reno, Calistoga, South Lake Tahoe, Healdsburg, Sonoma, St. Helena, Glen Ellen, and Yountville.
- Number of Stops: 10
- Total States Passed: 4
- Total Number of EV Chargers Across Stops: 919
- Total Distance (Miles): 2,038
- Estimated Duration: 36:03:00
- Additional Stops Required: 5 (ex. Fresno and Bakersfield)
- Total Hotels with EV Chargers Across Locations: 43
- Total Charge Stops Required: 15
- Cost to Charge for the Road Trip ($0.04 per mile): $81.51
Pacific Coast Highway
The Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) came in third place and scored 25 out of a possible 45 points for EV road trips. The highway was first created in the 1930s and hugs over 900 kilometers (600 miles) of California’s stunning coastlines.
The Pacific Coast Highway offers EV drivers scenic views of the California coast where people can view clifftop scenery, hidden coves, forests, and sandy beaches.
- Number of Stops: 9
- Total States Passed: 1
- Total Number of EV Chargers Across Stops: 2,112
- Total Distance (Miles): 456
- Estimated Duration: 8:25:00
- Additional Stops Required: 0
- Total Hotels with EV Chargers Across Locations: 70
- Total Charge Stops Required: 9
- Cost to Charge for the Road Trip ($0.04 per mile): $18.25
Las Vegas Loop
The Las Vegas Loop came in fourth place and scored 21 out of a possible 45 points for EV road trips. The tunnel system is currently made up of two one-mile-long tunnels underneath the Las Vegas Convention Center. The Las Vegas Loop is anticipated to connect resorts up and down the Strip.
A Las Vegas City Council meeting declared that the Las Vegas Loop will use Tesla vehicles. It will also extend with an additional 4.6-mile circuit that will operate north under Las Vegas Boulevard to the downtown resort corridor and finally to the south on Main Street.
- Number of Stops: 6
- Total States Passed: 3
- Total Number of EV Chargers Across Stops: 458
- Total Distance (Miles): 1,106
- Estimated Duration: 19:32:00
- Additional Stops Required: 2 (ex. Kingman)
- Total Hotels with EV Chargers Across Locations: 51
- Total Charge Stops Required: 8
- Cost to Charge for the Road Trip ($0.04 per mile): $44.25
Chicago to New Orleans
Finally, Chicago to New Orleans came in fifth place and scored 20 out of a possible 45 points for EV road trips. The 975-mile allows EV drivers to travel across six states, down the Mississippi River, from the Great Lakes on America's northern border to the Gulf Of Mexico in the south.
Some highlights of the road trip include the 1950s Park Forest House Museum, Kankakee County Historical Museum, the Krannert Art Museum, and the Shawnee National Forest.
- Number of Stops: 5
- Total States Passed: 5
- Total Number of EV Chargers Across Stops: 304
- Total Distance (Miles): 1,051
- Estimated Duration: 16:42:00
- Additional Stops Required: 3 (ex. Bloomington)
- Total Hotels with EV Chargers Across Locations: 18
- Total Charge Stops Required: 8
- Cost to Charge for the Road Trip ($0.04 per mile): $42.03
We’re sure we’ve got you in the mood for a road trip, and if you've been considering an EV, now is a great time to lease one. Leasing an EV has advantages such as lower monthly payments, having no long-term commitment, being able to upgrade every few years, and above all, being environmentally friendly.
Manufacturers will continue to add EV options and improve their features, so leasing is a smart option for tech-conscious car buyers looking for an EV.
Also, make sure to check out our blog to learn more about the EV options available to you for your next road trip.