We found a new resource that others may want to investigate. As you know, many more vehicles are being sold that depend on electricity. Answering a need for access to electric, a company called ShorePower Technologies has installations that provide power connections on an hourly basis.
We stayed at Wendover, Utah, in September. We were looking for a casino parking lot in West Wendover, Nev., but in the process we found a large parking lot next to a casino. It turned out the parking lot was the truck parking for the AM Best Travel Stop. There was a casino RV park behind the truck parking but there were no pull-through spots in the RV Park and we didn't want to unhook.
When we pulled into the parking lot, I noticed a number of fixtures that looked like power outlets on one end of the lot. I took a look and sure enough they were electrical outlets, four separate boxes per post. There were parking spaces marked for trucks to back in or pull in to a parking spot and hook up electricity rather than running their engine all night long. I went into the AM Best station and inquired about these connections.
They indicated that we were welcome to stay on the parking lot for the night and I was directed to a kiosk to purchase the electricity. I picked up a brochure at that kiosk and returned to the motorhome to investigate further. There was a web site listed on the form (see link in the first paragraph). Logging on to the web site, I learned about the company, the power posts, rates and how to get the power turned on.
It turns out there are 30-amp outlets as well as 20-amp outlets. Each post has three 20-amp outlets and one 30-amp outlet. The cost for using these is $1 per hour (20- or 30-amp the same) plus a $1 administration fee to turn on the electric.
There was an 800 number, so I called and set up an account. I activated a 30-amp outlet at the rate of $1 per hour for the night. I said 15 hours in part because they indicated the first use was free! They set the electric to start at 5 p.m. and shut off at 8 a.m. Normally, that would cost $16, but this time it was free. There was a visible timer on the post, so I could see when the power was turned on and when it was about to go off. You could choose to have the electric turned on at 4 a.m. for three hours for $4, get your batteries charged and coffee made and be on your way for just $4 for a one- night stay. By the way, the power stations had connections for cable TV, and the web site indicated free Wi-Fi was available at some locations.
Now, here is the thing. We were there hooked up all night long and no trucks came in to hook up. If the truckers aren't using it and we are, the company might see another market to address and we may get some of these that are better set up for motor homes.
We parked at an angle to the post we hooked up to, which would have blocked two or three sites for trucks. But in this case the lot was large, there were only a few trucks and none of them chose to hook up to the electric. I can see the company working with other places that have large parking lots and would like to make a few bucks off the RVing community. Perhaps places like motels, community parks, convention areas, maybe even Wal-Mart and Sam's!
The web site lists places where the company has installations -- there are about 50 scattered throughout the US. We'll be on I-90 in a few weeks and there are several stations there that looked like they might be where we might be making a stop. I'll try to investigate those and use them if possible. Clearly, some of the stations were in city locations for commuters plugging in cars and they wouldn't be suitable for anything but small RVs, but the trucking applications would work well for us. Imagine the possibilities if everyone with a large parking lot put in a few power posts and they could make some money from hosting overnight RV parking. We could find lots of large parking lots like Wal-Mart that would be welcoming us.
Anyway, electric power is coming to the roadways and that can't be bad for motorhome owners!