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Where to Charge Electric Vehicle in Belgium

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Publication date: 23/05/24

Belgium, with its rich cultural tapestry, stunning medieval towns, and modern, vibrant cities, is rapidly becoming a top destination for electric vehicle (EV) enthusiasts. This guide offers detailed information on the extensive network of public chargers, highlighting the strategic locations of high-density charging facilities and discussing the costs associated with charging your vehicle. Additionally, we provide practical travel tips to ensure efficient planning and seamless navigation across Belgium’s diverse landscapes.

As Belgium advances in its environmental initiatives, the development of its electric vehicle infrastructure significantly facilitates eco-friendly exploration across the country. From the historic squares of Brussels to Wallonia's medieval castles and the bustling port of Antwerp, the commitment to reducing the carbon footprint is evident through the widespread availability of public charging stations. Whether you are navigating Ghent's cobblestone streets, enjoying the chocolates and waffles of Bruges, or conducting business in the European Quarter, an extensive network of chargers supports your journey.

Experience Belgium in a way that is both enjoyable and sustainable. Join us as we navigate through the country’s green initiatives and discover the best places to charge your electric vehicle, ensuring a seamless and eco-friendly travel experience.

Electric Mobility Infrastructure Data

Number of Public Chargers

The nation boasts a robust network of charging stations, effectively catering to the diverse needs of EV drivers. As of 2023, detailed statistics from the International Energy Agency's Global EV Data Explorer show that Belgium is equipped with 44,000 public charging points. This network ensures that electric vehicle owners can conveniently find charging options, whether they are commuting within city limits or embarking on cross-country travels. The breakdown of these facilities is as follows:

  • 42,000 Public Slow Chargers: these are perfect for drivers who can afford to charge overnight or who plan to stay parked for extended periods. You'll typically find these AC chargers at residential complexes, shopping centers, and office buildings, making them easily accessible during everyday activities.

  • 2,000 Public Fast Chargers: designed for efficiency, these DC chargers cater to those needing a quick boost to continue their journey. They are strategically placed in urban centers and along major highways, ideal for topping up the battery during longer trips.

For more insights into global electric vehicle trends and data, visit the IEA's Global EV Data Explorer.

Regions with the Highest Number of EV Chargers

According to 2023 data from EV Belgium, a leading organization advocating for zero-emission mobility, Belgium's electric vehicle charging infrastructure is strategically distributed across the country's three main regions: Flanders, Wallonia, and the Brussels-Capital region. This thoughtful planning aligns with Belgium's geographical and administrative divisions and addresses varying levels of EV adoption and infrastructure development across these regions.

  • Flanders: Home to the majority with 28,000 charging points, Flanders demonstrates robust electric vehicle adoption. The extensive network ensures comprehensive coverage, facilitating seamless EV travel across the region.
  • Wallonia: Wallonia features approximately 5,000 charging points. Although modest compared to Flanders, the infrastructure is expanding to support the growing interest in electric mobility, especially in urban and suburban areas.
  • Brussels: The Brussels-Capital region, with 3,000 charging points, may seem modest but is optimized for its urban setting. This setup supports the capital's push towards sustainable urban mobility, particularly under the upcoming "Electrify.Brussels" program which aims to triple the number of commercial charging stations by 2024.

Recommended Destinations

Explore the country's rich cultural heritage and beautiful landscapes with ease. Here are some regions well-equipped for electric vehicle travelers:

Flanders

  • Bruges is captivating with its Historic Centre featuring cobblestone streets and picturesque canals. The city is also home to the Belfry of Bruges, a medieval tower that offers panoramic views.
  • In Antwerp, the Cathedral of Our Lady stands out for housing several masterpieces by Peter Paul Rubens. The Plantin-Moretus Museum, recognised by UNESCO, delves into the rich history of printing.
  • Ghent offers a journey back in time with its well-preserved Gravensteen Castle. Saint Bavo's Cathedral is famous for housing "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb" by the Van Eyck brothers.
  • Leuven attracts visitors with its stunning Gothic Town Hall and the historic University of Leuven, one of the oldest in Europe.
  • The sophisticated seaside town of Knokke-Heist is known for its beaches, art galleries, and chic boutiques.

Wallonia

  • Liège intrigues visitors with its modern Liège-Guillemins Railway Station, designed by the renowned architect Santiago Calatrava. The city also offers a deep dive into the arts with its Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, and an engaging experience at the Liège Aquarium-Museum.
  • Namur invites exploration with its commanding Citadel overlooking the River Meuse. The city is also home to the Félicien Rops Museum, dedicated to the Belgian artist known for his provocative and often erotic illustrations.
  • Charleroi appeals to art enthusiasts with its Photography Museum, the largest of its kind in Europe. The BPS22, Charleroi's museum of contemporary art, showcases a compelling range of modern artworks.
  • In Mons, the Grand Place forms the historic heart of the city, surrounded by the ornate Town Hall and ancient guild houses. The Duesberg Museum offers a fascinating glimpse into decorative arts from the neoclassical period.
  • Tournai enchants with its dual architectural heritage in the Tournai Cathedral, blending Gothic and Romanesque styles. The city's Museum of Fine Arts houses pieces by notable artists such as Manet and Monet, adding a touch of impressionist flair to the visit.

Brussels-Capital Region

  • Brussels, the capital, is famed for the Grand Place (Grote Markt), a central square known for its impressive architecture. The Atomium, an iconic structure, and a UNESCO World Heritage site, that symbolizes a magnified iron atom, and the Manneken Pis, the famous statue of a urinating boy, are other significant landmarks in the city.

Each of these regions not only highlights Belgium's commitment to sustainable travel but also ensures that visitors can explore its diverse attractions with minimal environmental impact. Whether visiting bustling city centers or peaceful countryside, Belgium’s EV-friendly destinations provide a unique blend of accessibility and charm.

Travel Tips and Planning

How to Find Charging Stations

Designed to simplify your journey, the miio app is an essential tool for anyone driving an electric vehicle. It allows you to effortlessly locate charging stations by providing a comprehensive and user-friendly interface.

Discover Charging Points with Ease: With miio, you can search for specific charging stations or use the app’s advanced filtering options. Whether you’re looking for the fastest charging solutions or the most cost-effective options, miio app lets you filter stations based on charging speed, type of location (public spots, restaurants, parking areas, etc.), price, and availability. This makes it incredibly convenient to find exactly what you need, wherever you are in Belgium.

App miio - Filters

Plan Your Trip Efficiently: One of the standout features of the miio app is its journey planner. This tool not only identifies charging stations along your route but also suggests optimal stops for recharging. This feature ensures that you can plan your travel with confidence, knowing that you will have access to reliable charging points along the way, minimizing delays and maximizing your travel experience.

App miio - Planning Route

How much should I pay to make a recharge?

The cost of charging your electric vehicle in Belgium can vary significantly depending on the provider. To ensure you're getting the best rate, use the miio app to easily compare prices across different charging stations. Simply open the app and select the charge point you're interested in; the app will display not only the rates but also any additional fees that might apply, such as parking restrictions or time-based charges.

One of the standout features of the miio app is its cost simulation tool. This feature enables drivers to estimate the cost of charging at different stations, providing a clear idea of what to expect before you plug in. This can be particularly helpful for budget-conscious travelers, ensuring no surprises and more controlled spending.

EV Charging Simulation Tool

Choosing Accommodations with EV Charging Stations

When planning your stay in Belgium, prioritize hotels, inns, or guesthouses equipped with electric vehicle charging facilities. Opting for accommodations that offer onsite EV chargers adds a layer of convenience to your trip. You can recharge your vehicle overnight or while you unwind and enjoy your surroundings.

Selecting a place to stay with EV charging capabilities ensures a seamless travel experience. It keeps your itinerary flexible and your vehicle ready to go, eliminating the need to seek out external charging points.

Electric Vehicles Regulations in Urban Mobility

In Belgium, electric vehicle drivers enjoy several urban mobility benefits, particularly concerning navigation and parking in city centers. Many Belgian cities, including Brussels, Antwerp, and Ghent, are increasingly adopting Low Emission Zones (LEZs) and Zero Emission Zones (ZEZs). These areas typically restrict access to conventional internal combustion engine vehicles to reduce air pollution and congestion, but EVs often have unrestricted access or are subject to fewer restrictions.

Additionally, Belgian cities provide incentives like free or discounted parking specifically for electric vehicles. This makes it easier and more economical for EV drivers to access city centers, attend events, or enjoy local attractions without worrying about high parking costs.

For the most precise and current information regarding the rules for accessing limited traffic zones and any available incentives for electric vehicles, it is crucial to consult the local municipal websites or dedicated urban mobility portals. These platforms offer up-to-date details on the regulations that apply to electric vehicles, helping drivers avoid fines and ensuring they benefit from all available incentives.

You can find comprehensive information about urban vehicle access regulations across Europe on the European Commission's urban mobility page and detailed specifics about Belgium on platforms like the Urban Access Regulations website, which is an essential resource for understanding city-specific rules and benefits for electric vehicles.

Find a Charging Station with the miio App

Conclusion

Exploring Belgium in an electric vehicle offers a seamless and enriching experience that melds the past with the present. Belgium's extensive network of charging stations across Flanders, Wallonia, and the Brussels-Capital area makes every journey eco-friendly and enjoyable. Cultural treasures and modern conveniences line every route, facilitating a deep exploration of Belgium’s rich heritage and lush landscapes.

The tools like the miio app simplifies your travel by helping locate charging stations, plan routes, and manage costs, while accommodations across the country provide EV charging capabilities to cater to environmentally conscious travelers. Incentives such as free parking and unrestricted access to certain zones enrich the experience, highlighting Belgium's commitment to sustainable travel.

This journey through Belgium is not just about exploring its historical splendor but also embracing its future in sustainability. Each stop unveils a new facet of its identity, and every mile driven contributes to a greener tomorrow, inviting you to experience the beauty and heritage of Belgium in an eco-friendly manner.

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