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 ownership continues to surge

To drive forward 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 the ban to start in 2030.

In Ireland, battery electric (BEV) and hybrid (HEV) passenger car sales have, so far this year, made up around 45% of all new car purchases, with new BEV sales up by 65% on last year.

Across the rest of Europe, EV sales continue apace. In June 2023, electric and hybrids made up 48% of new passenger cars in EU countries, with year-on-year EV sales continuing to surge in Europe’s largest markets.

How much does it cost to run an electric car?

Whilst electric vehicles (EVs) are becoming increasingly popular with drivers across Europe, the price motorists pay to charge their EVs differs significantly between countries.

Electric vehicles are over 70% cheaper to run than petrol or diesel vehicles, but the price paid to charge an EV depends not only on the make and model of the car but which country and where the vehicle is charged.

In Ireland, motorists will typically pay between €6.00 and €30.00 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 and ranked the cheapest and most expensive countries based on the price of a full home charge and driving 100km.

EU and UK electric car charges

Ukraine and Turkey have been excluded from Eurostat (2022-S2) figures, so were omitted from the study. United Kingdom costs are derived from a separate source and may not be directly comparable.

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:

  • Geopolitical situation
  • Energy mix and use of renewables
  • Taxes, levies and subsidies

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 are the most expensive places to run an electric vehicle. The costlier countries tend to have a higher EV market share of new car sales and more electric and hybrid vehicles on the road, except for Cyprus and Czechia.

The driving range is often a concern for motorists considering the switch, and unsurprisingly the cars with the longest ranges tend to be the most expensive to run.

According to the experts, the Mercedes EQS 450+ is the one to beat in 2023, offering around 5 hours of driving, followed by the most recent Tesla Model S with a 570km range, but you may also look to the more affordable Skoda Enyaq Coupe iV80 for peace of mind on long trips.

Top 10 most expensive countries

Rank Country € per full charge € per 100km drive    
1 Denmark €36.17 €10.53 Despite Denmark being the most expensive country in Europe to charge an EV, it has one of the highest pure electric market shares in Europe, and sales continue to grow. Previous tax exemptions are being tapered as EV take-up increases.  
2 Belgium €27.66 €8.05 In second place, Belgium is continuing to see a surge in electric and hybrid sales during 2023. There are regional tax benefits and subsidies for EV drivers and grants for home charging point installation.  
3 Czechia €23.68 €6.90 EV uptake in Czechia is relatively low despite generous purchase incentives and tax benefits. In 2022 just 2% of all new cars registered were fully electric, but sales are starting to increase 2023.  
4 Italy €22.43 €6.53 Italy’s electric car market bucked the European trend in 2022 and shrunk slightly but has now returned to slow growth. There are purchase subsidies of up to €3,000 for Italian drivers, but the discount depends on the cost of the EV and scrappage.  
5 Romania €21.01 €6.12 Now one of the more expensive places in Europe to charge an EV at home, it pledged to build 200,000 charging stations in 2018 and record sales of over 10,000 electric cars in 2022 shows the investment paid off.  
6 Germany €20.68 €6.02 Electric vehicle sales have boomed in Germany over the last few years, with over 350,000 fully electric cars registered in 2022 - almost 1 in 5 of all cars. Tax incentives and purchase subsidies are gradually being reduced.  
7 Spain €20.64 €6.01 EV registrations in Spain are continuing strong growth during the first half of 2023, with a market share of BEVSs and PHEVs totalling 11%. New EV buyers are eligible for generous grants, national road tax discounts and income tax rebates.  
8 Cyprus €20.09 €5.85 With EVs accounting for only 4% of newly registered cars, sales have picked up considerably in 2023. Generous grants and scrappage incentives were recently introduced, which has boosted the market.  
9 Ireland €19.87 €5.79 The 9th most expensive country in Europe to charge an EV, Ireland registered over 18,448 new battery electric cars (BEVs) between January and July 2023, accounting for 18% of the new car sales market; including hybrids, around 45% of the market. A raft of incentives encourages EV take-up in Ireland, including purchase subsidies, tax breaks, grants, and toll road discounts.  
10 Latvia €18.43 €5.37 The purchase of new and used electric cars is currently subsidised up to €4,500 until the end of 2023. The subsidy is increased by 1,000 euros if the car is scrapped.  

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 Fiat 500e, followed by the new Volkswagen e-up! Although for greater range, the Peugeot E-208 or MG4 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 Kosovo €3.92 €1.14 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.  
2 Georgia €5.21 €1.52 Electric car use is growing here with over 2,500 EVs registered and a healthy take-up year on year due to custom duty exemptions, free parking and tax licences.  
3 Serbia €5.35 €1.56 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.  
4 Bosnia and Herzegovina €5.50 €1.60 The first EV chargers were installed in 2018, and the government announced new generous subsidies for EV purchases in 2022.  
5 Albania €6.01 €1.75 Government incentives like refunding registration and licence and ownership fees resulted in only 2,588 electric cars registered in 2022 - 0.35% of the total vehicles on the road.  
6 Montenegro €6.05 €1.76 With a growing network of charging stations and green initiatives, it’s likely that EV sales in Montenegro will continue to increase towards 2030.  
7 North Macedonia €6.35 €1.85 Despite low EV uptake due to high costs, there are around 40 charging points in and around the capital Skopje, and the ProCredit Bank is offering favourable loan rates for buying an electric car.  
8 Hungary €6.68 €1.94 With a steady increase over the last few years, EVs now account for 8.6% of new passenger car registrations. There are national and local incentives for EV ownership, such as tax benefits and free parking.  
9 Bulgaria €7.07 €2.06 Electric and hybrid car sales surged in Bulgaria during the first half of 2023, despite few purchase incentives and a shortage of charging stations.  
10 Malta €7.87 €2.29 EV take up slowed in the first half of 2023, even though the Maltese government offer a generous purchase incentive, scrappage grant and tax benefits.  

Where does your country rank?

EV charging chart EU and UK 2023

Ukraine and Turkey have been excluded from Eurostat (2022-S2) figures, so were omitted from the study. United Kingdom costs are derived from a separate source and may not be directly comparable.

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?

Not only are they up to 74% cheaper to run than carbon-fuelled cars, but there are now over 5,000 public EV charge points in Ireland, and more are being added all the time.

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 €600 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 2023)
Ownership benefits
  • BEVs qualify for lowest motor tax band of €120 and PHEVs around €170
  • 0% Benefit in kind rate for battery EVs up to €35,000
  • Toll reductions for eligible BEVs and PHEVs (until 31 Dec 2023)

How to save money on electric car charging

Despite the current energy crisis, the good news is that you don’t have to pay sky-high prices to charge your electric car.

There are many ways you can make EV charging more cost-effective with minimal hassle. For the biggest saving, shop around for a supplier that offers tariffs designed for electric car drivers or smart plans that offer cheaper night rates.

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

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

These suppliers offer incentives to charge your car within specific time bands when electricity is cheapest and offer discounts on green electricity.

Some energy suppliers have partnered with certain car manufacturers to provide free home charge points and others offer a discounted EV home charger installation service. If you have a smart meter, you may get a smartphone app to choose when to charge your car and view consumption data, so you’re totally in control.

Alternatively, 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).

If you don’t want to switch but have a smart meter, maximise discounts for night use and get advanced insights into your household usage, so you can learn how to save money on future bills.

Don’t forget to apply for the EV Home Charger Grant, which allows you to claim up to €600 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 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 about the top 50 bestselling cars in Europe in 2022 (according to
  2. Household electricity costs per country were collated using the latest data tables from Eurostat (last updated 28 June 2023). United Kingdom electricity costs and price cap/subsidies data were derived from the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero.
  3. To work out the cost per charge, we multiplied the useable battery capacity of each vehicle by the cost of electricity in each country according to Eurostat.
  4. To work out the cost to drive 100km we divided the cost of a full charge with the ‘real range km’ of the vehicle and multiplied it by 100.

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