Convenience Stores with Convenient Charging
7-Eleven has built its entire business model around convenience. With over 13,000 stores across North America, the company exists to be the place where people can go to quickly grab anything they need while on the go. That’s especially true for its stores located along highways and major travel routes. And now, 7-Eleven has announced that it’s opening up a nation-wide network of rapid chargers called 7Charge to add Level 3 DC fast charging to its convenience stores – offering a quick top-up of electrons along with food, drinks, and other road-tripping essentials.
Already active at many locations in Florida, Texas, Colorado, and California, 7-Eleven aims for 7Charge to be one of the largest and most compatible fast-charging networks of any retailer in North America. The network will offer EV drivers 7‑Eleven’s familiar convenience and accessibility. Rapid chargers will be compatible with CHAdeMO and Combined Charging System (CCS) plug types, as well as Tesla vehicles through a commonly-available adapter. In addition, 7-Eleven will launch a 7Charge app, to offer customers a more seamless charging and payment experience. The app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
Green Electricity 24/7
Backed by 100% green electricity, the 7Charge network of chargers will be located on frequently-traveled corridors, at store locations that are staffed 24 hours, seven days a week. Crucially, payment can be made using the 7Charge app or simply by using a credit card at the charger. Billing will be either by kilowatt-hour, or by time, depending on state and local regulations. There’s even a toll-free, 24/7 support line available to charging station users if they experience issues,
The 7Charge app has the capability to notify drivers when a charging session is complete, so they can move their vehicle off the charger. However, the more likely use case for the 7Charge network will be rapid 10-15 minute electricity top-ups while EV drivers dash into the 7-Eleven store. The company has not yet confirmed the maximum speed of the Level 3 chargers being deployed.
Making Charging More Accessible
7-Eleven is just the latest company to launch a nationwide network of fast chargers. Companies are taking advantage of government support to rapidly expand the availability of fast charging across the U.S., hoping to lure EV drivers to their stores and restaurants while they charge on the go.
One interesting thing is that 7-Eleven says that the 7Charge network will help deliver on the growing need for EV charging infrastructure – including in neighborhoods that have until now lacked access. The company will partner with third-party companies to expand its network to match consumer demand. Once the network is complete, 7‑Eleven says it will have one of the largest and most compatible fast-charging networks of any retailer in North America – serving communities and customers at charging stations across the 7-Eleven, Speedway, and Stripes brands.