Car Insurance

The cost of charging an electric car across Europe

Electric cars are better for the environment and can save money in the long run. Here are the most expensive and cheapest places in Europe to charge your electric vehicle, plus a look at subsidies and grants to support electric car ownership.

Electric vehicle sales decline across Europe

In Ireland, battery electric (BEV) and hybrid (HEV) passenger car sales have made up around 42% of all new car purchases so far this year, with new BEV sales down 21% on last year.

Across the rest of Europe, battery electric car (BEV) sales have dropped by 11.3% with a marked slowdown in Germany but an upturn in Belgium and France.. Despite the drop in BEVs, hybrid vehicle sales have continued to grow in Europe’s largest markets and Ireland.

To encourage electric vehicle ownership within the EU the European Parliament will outlaw new petrol and diesel car sales from 2035. As part of the Climate Action Bill, Ireland intends to introduce the ban as early as 2030.

Source: European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) and SIMI Motorstats

How much does it cost to run an electric car?

Electric vehicles (EVs) are an attractive option for drivers across Europe due to cheaper running costs, but the price motorists pay to charge their EVs differs significantly between countries.

Electric vehicles are around 70% cheaper to run than petrol or diesel vehicles, but the cost to charge an EV depends on a range of factors, including model, charging location and method.

In Ireland, motorists typically pay between €10-€30 to fully charge their EV at home on a standard tariff, depending on the make and model. Public charging points may cost up to 60% more, especially for fast charging.

Charging your electric car at home across Europe

We’ve researched the cost of charging electric vehicles at home across Europe based on the price of a full home charge and driving 100km and ranked them from most expensive to cheapest.

EV charging costs table 2024

*United Kingdom costs are derived from a separate source and may not be directly comparable. Ukraine has been excluded from Eurostat (2023 S2) figures, so were omitted from the study.

Why do EV running costs differ across Europe?

Many things influence how much you pay for your gas and electricity, so energy prices vary across Europe for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Energy mix and use of renewables
  • Taxes, levies and subsidies
  • Geopolitics

Other factors that impact costs include import diversification, network costs, weather conditions and environmental protection policies.

Which countries are the most expensive to charge an electric car?

The more affluent European countries with greater EV adoption rates tend to be the most expensive places to run an electric vehicle. They have a higher market share of new EV sales and more electric and hybrid vehicles on the road, although there are some exceptions, like Cyprus.

The driving range - the distance a car can travel from a full charge - is one of the main concerns for motorists considering the switch to electric.

According to, the Mercedes-Benz EQS is still the one to beat for range in 2024, offering up to 768km of non-stop driving. It’s followed by the new Volkswagen ID.7 with a 701km range, but you may also look to the more affordable Hyundai Ioniq 6 or Kia EV6 for peace of mind on long trips.

Top 10 most expensive countries

Rank Country € per full charge € per 100km drive    
1 Germany €23.57 €7.06 Electric vehicle sales have boomed in Germany over the last few years, with over 524,000 fully electric cars registered in 2023, but growth is slowing with sales down in 2024. Tax incentives and purchase subsidies are gradually being reduced.  
2 Ireland €22.25 €6.66 Ireland registered over 10,103 new battery electric cars (BEVs) in 2023, but sales are down so far this year. A raft of incentives encourages EV take-up in Ireland, including purchase subsidies, tax breaks and grants, although these are reducing year on year  
3 Belgium €22.15 €6.63 Belgium saw a surge in electric and hybrid sales during 2023 and bucks the EU downward trend with continued growth in 2024. There are income tax deductions, subsidies and reduced taxes for home charger installations  
4 Liechtenstein €21.03 €6.30 In Liechtenstein and Switzerland the number of new electric cars jumped by 31.3% year-on-year in 2023 to 52,728 so now more than one in five cars is fully electric. Tax exemptions for electric vehicles were axed from the start of 2024  
5 Denmark €20.84 €6.24 Denmark has dropped to 5th place after taking the top spot in 2023. It still has one of the largest battery electric market shares in Europe, although sales are now slowing. Previous tax exemptions are being tapered as EV take-up increases.  
6 Cyprus €20.24 €6.06 With EVs now accounting for 10% of newly registered cars, sales have picked up in 2024. Generous grants and scrappage incentives were recently introduced, which has boosted the market.  
7 Italy €19.63 €5.87 Italy’s electric car market share has remained smaller than its neighbours at around 4%. This year they’ve enhanced purchase subsidies up to €13,000 if you buy a fully electric car, but the discount depends on EV cost and scrappage.  
8 United Kingdom €19.35 €5.87 The UK was Europe’s biggest electric car market for the first three months of 2023, but sales have since slowed. The government removed subsidies from privately bought electric cars in 2022.  
9 Czechia €18.48 €5.53 EV uptake in Czechia is still low despite some purchase incentives and tax benefits. In 2023, just 2.6% of all new cars registered were fully electric and 2024 market share looks similar.  
10 Latvia €16.27 €4.87 Electric car market share has shrunk since 2023 and is now down to 6.7%. There are no new purchase incentives, but owners may benefit from several tax exemptions  

Where are the cheapest countries to run an electric car?

The cheapest places in Europe to run an electric vehicle are primarily in central and southeastern Europe, where EV ownership is less popular. These countries tend to have lower sales and a smaller EV market share due to the prohibitive costs of many electric and hybrids.

The most affordable new electric car in Europe and the UK is the new Dacia Spring, followed by the Citreon e C3. Although for greater range, the MG 4 or BYD Dolphin could be the better budget option for longer road trips according to

Top 10 cheapest countries

Rank Country € per full charge € per 100km drive    
1 Türkiye €3.30 €0.99 In Turkey, electric car sales boomed during 2023 to 68,700, up from 7,540 the previous year - making it the country with the fastest growing EV market. Whilst there are no purchase subsidies, there are tax reductions for EV owners based on power consumption.  
2 Kosovo €4.39 €1.31 Despite cheap running costs and tax incentives to promote EV use and ensure 5% of all vehicles by 2030 are electric, Kosovo’s EV ownership hasn’t yet taken off.  
3 Bosnia and Herzegovina €4.96 €1.48 The EV market is slowly gaining traction; in 2023, the government earmarked about half a million euros for subsidies to encourage the purchase of EVs and hybrids.  
4 Georgia €5.08 €1.52 The sales of electric vehicles (EVs) increased by 37% in 2023. There are custom duty exemptions, free parking and tax licences.  
5 Montenegro €5.69 €1.70 With a growing network of charging stations and green initiatives, it’s likely that EV sales in Montenegro will continue to increase towards 2030.  
6 Serbia €6.13 €1.84 Whilst it’s one of the cheapest places to charge an EV, motorists haven’t been tempted to make the switch, and EV sales remain low. New incentives and purchase subsidies are in place to encourage uptake.  
7 Albania €6.39 €1.91 Despite government incentives, there has not been much EV take-up due to poor charging infrastructure. The Albanian government has pledged to install 200 to 300 charging stations by 2025 throughout the country.  
8 Hungary €6.64 €1.99 With a steady increase over the last few years, EVs now account for 9.1% of new passenger car registrations. There are generous purchase incentives and tax exemptions for EV owners.  
9 North Macedonia €6.80 €2.03 Market share is growing, but it’s still slow compared to other countries in the EU due to high costs and poor charging infrastructure.  
10 Bulgaria €6.99 €2.09 There were 768 battery electric and hybrid car registrations in Bulgaria in the first quarter of 2024, an increase of 46.8 per cent year on year, despite few purchase incentives.  

Where does your country rank?

EV charging costs chart 2023

*United Kingdom costs are derived from a separate source and may not be directly comparable. Ukraine has been excluded from Eurostat (2023 S2) figures, so were omitted from the study.

electric car charge europe

What’s so good about buying electric?

Ireland, like many European countries, offers incentives to drivers who buy electric vehicles.

On top of the environmental benefits, common benefits across Europe include:

  • purchase subsidies and grants
  • scrappage schemes
  • registration and ownership tax benefits
  • company tax incentives
  • EV charging subsidies

To encourage the uptake of electric vehicles, some countries offer free parking in certain areas, road toll exemptions or allow driving in special lanes.

Why buy an electric car in Ireland?

Despite high electricity prices, EVs are still cheaper to run than carbon-fuelled cars.

Whilst poor charging infrastructure has been a sticking point in the past, there are now around 3,000 public EV charge points in Ireland, and more are being added constantly.

Ireland offers valuable incentives to encourage people to purchase battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).

Purchase subsidies
  • Government support up to €3,500 to buy new BEVs (up to €7,600 for large vans)
  • Grants up to €300 to install a home charger unit for new and second-hand BEVs or PHEVs
  • VRT relief of up to €5,000 for BEVs (registered before 31 Dec 2025)
Ownership benefits
  • BEVs qualify for the lowest motor tax band of €120 and PHEVs around €170
  • 0% Benefit in Kind (BIK) rate for company vehicle BEVs up to €45,000 (reducing to €10,000 by 2027)

How to save money on electric car charging

There are many ways to make EV charging more cost-effective if you charge your car at home.

For the biggest savings, shop around for a supplier offering tariffs designed for electric car drivers or smart plans with cheaper night rates. These suppliers offer incentives to charge your car at specific times when electricity is cheapest and offer discounts on green electricity.

According to the Irish EV Association, 43% of EV owners are on a Day/Night plan, 28% are on a Smart plan, and 29% are still on a standard rate plan.

Here’s a round-up of EV-friendly plans available in Ireland:

  • Energia - Energia Smart Drive
  • Bord Gáis - EV Smart
  • Pinergy - EV Drive
  • SSE Airtricity - Smart Night Boost
  • Electric Ireland- Home Dual+ Night Boost

If you don’t have a smart meter, consider switching your electricity supplier to get a better rate with time-of-use options. You could save hundreds of euros a year by charging an electric car on the best tariff on the market instead of the SVR (standard variable rate).

Alternatively, if you don’t want to switch but have a smart meter, make sure you maximise discounts for night use and monitor your household usage. A smartphone app provides usage insights and can help you choose when to charge your car, so you’re in control.

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Is it worth installing an EV home charger?

Charging at home is cheaper than charging on the go, although there are costs upfront. Some energy suppliers have partnered with car manufacturers to provide free home charge points; others offer discounted EV home charger installation.

If you’re not eligible for discounts or a free charge point, apply for the EV Home Charger Grant, which allows you to claim up to €300 towards purchasing and installing an electric vehicle home charger unit.

How to insure an electric car

You’ll need to buy car insurance for an electric car in the same way you would a carbon-fuelled car. Some insurers offer discounted insurance for EV drivers, so compare insurance quotes to get the best deal.

You may want to look out for specific benefits like:

  • battery cover
  • charging cable cover
  • breakdown assistance for a flat battery

All you need to know about car insurance in Ireland

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Methodology and sources

  1. To calculate the average cost of charging an electric car per country across Europe we collated data such as ‘EVDB Real range’ and ‘Useable Battery Capacity’ data from the EV Database. We based averages on the top 20 bestselling battery electric cars in Europe in 2023 (according to
  2. Household electricity costs per country were collated using the latest data tables from Eurostat (last updated 25 April 2024). United Kingdom electricity costs and price cap/subsidies data were taken from Ofgem.
  3. To calculate the cost per charge, we multiplied each vehicle’s usable battery capacity by the cost of electricity in each country, according to Eurostat.
  4. To calculate the cost of driving 100km, we divided the cost of a full charge by the vehicle’s ‘real range km’ and multiplied it by 100.

The countries included are all EU members plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Moldova, Georgia, and the United Kingdom. Ukraine was excluded from the study because energy price data was omitted from the latest Eurostat data.