Six-Hour Queues Shows Painful Reality Of Owning A Tesla At Christmas

Credit: Taina Sohlman / Alamy
Tesla owners driving home for Christmas faced hefty queues in the UK, after being forced to wait hours to charge their cars.

While electric vehicles are considered better for the environment as they have zero tailpipe emissions, the infrastructure for charging them on the go still appears to need some work.

Electric vehicle charging points have been popping up at an ever-increasing frequency over recent years, however, fast chargers can still be few and far between.

Those who were making long journeys across the UK to visit family over the Christmas period found that many Tesla charging spots had queues of drivers waiting to recharge their vehicles for up to six hours at a time.

Drivers took to social media to share videos and photos of the queues, with some reporting being stuck for several hours waiting to charge.

One user wrote: "Bedlam @WestmorlandServ Tebay today. 2hr 30m wait for a charge. Worst journey as @Tesla driver. Q now 40 deep!"

Another added: "In the UK today there were 6 hour queues for people to use a charger. The UK is just not ready for electric vehicles."

Tesla batteries can last at least 267 miles on a single charge - with the most extended range currently offered being 375 miles per full charge in the Model S, according to - however, this varies depending on certain factors including how the car is driven.

Regardless, many drivers making longer journeys will need to fill up - or recharge - at some point during their trip, and the Tesla Superchargers at service stations on the motorways in the UK proved to be hugely oversubscribed over the Christmas period.

One driver joked: "UK services this week have been insanely busy for Tesla charging, currently car 15 in a queue of over 20 ... but you can always rely on the British public to make an orderly queue."

Another Facebook user filmed a small army of Teslas queueing for the Tebay Southbound supercharger, telling others: "All our electric Tesla friends queueing up to charge up at Tebay Services on the post Xmas trip south," before adding it was a "struggle to park as very busy".

Tesla currently operates over 40,000 Superchargers, which allow drivers to recharge their batteries with 172 miles worth of power in just 15 minutes.

Most are located on major routes and motorways to allow drivers making longer journeys to keep going with minimal delay - providing they aren't all in use with a line of others also waiting, of course.

The Tesla app can also show drivers where Superchargers are available, as well as helping them monitor their own charge status.

Superchargers are also advertised to cost a "fraction" of what petrol or diesel would set you back - though both energy and fuel costs have increased in recent months - which has meant an ever-increasing amount of motorists are considering switching to electric vehicles.

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