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Tesla Road Trip Tips for Long-Distance Travelers

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Last updated on July 29th, 2023 at 06:26 am

Are you ready to embark on an unforgettable journey in your electric vehicle? A long road trip in a Tesla is not only an exciting adventure but also a sustainable choice that reduces your carbon footprint. However, to ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience, it’s important to know some essential Tesla road trip tips. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore a plethora of tips specifically designed for long-distance travel in your Tesla. From strategic planning and utilizing Tesla Superchargers to optimizing battery life and making the most of your navigation system, we’ve got you covered. So, fasten your seatbelts, charge up your batteries, and let’s hit the road!

Is Tesla Good for a Road Trip? Exploring the Benefits of Electric Adventures

Planning a road trip ? If you’re considering embarking on an adventure with a Tesla, you might be wondering if it’s a suitable choice for your journey. In this article, we’ll explore the question: Is Tesla good for a road trip? Let’s delve into the benefits of driving a Tesla on your next excursion.

White Tesla - Tesla Road Trip Tips

Range and Charging Network

One of the primary concerns when it comes to road trips with electric vehicles (EVs) is range anxiety. However, Tesla’s extensive charging network and impressive range capabilities make it an ideal choice for long-distance travel. Tesla’s Supercharger network provides fast and convenient charging options along major highways, allowing you to replenish your battery quickly and continue your journey with minimal downtime. With Supercharger stations strategically located, you can confidently plan your route and charge your Tesla at regular intervals, ensuring a smooth and uninterrupted road trip experience.

Rapid Charging Speeds

Tesla cars are known for their fast charging speeds, thanks to their innovative technology and advanced battery management systems. Superchargers can provide a significant amount of charge in a short period, allowing you to get back on the road quickly. Depending on the model and charging station, you can add hundreds of miles of range to your Tesla in as little as 15 to 30 minutes. This means you can make efficient pit stops, enjoy a meal, stretch your legs, and have your Tesla ready for the next leg of your adventure.

Tesla’s Navigation and Trip Planning Tools

Tesla vehicles come equipped with built-in navigation systems that are optimized for EV travel. These systems consider factors such as your Tesla’s current charge level, charging station locations, and real-time traffic conditions to provide you with the most efficient and convenient route to your destination. The navigation system also identifies Supercharger stations along your route, making it easy to plan charging stops and optimize your journey. Additionally, Tesla’s trip planning tools, available through the Tesla app and website, offer comprehensive trip planning capabilities, allowing you to map out your route, estimate charging times, and locate amenities such as restaurants, shopping centers, and scenic attractions along the way.

Enhanced Driving Experience

Driving a Tesla on a road trip offers a unique and enjoyable experience. Teslas are known for their smooth acceleration, quiet operation, and spacious interiors, providing comfort for both the driver and passengers during long hours on the road. Tesla’s autopilot features, such as adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance, can also alleviate driver fatigue, making the journey safer and more relaxing. With access to entertainment options, streaming services, and a comprehensive infotainment system, Tesla ensures that you and your passengers are entertained throughout the trip.

Eco-Friendly and Cost-Efficient

Choosing a Tesla for your road trip not only offers convenience and comfort but also contributes to a greener and more sustainable future. Tesla’s all-electric vehicles produce zero tailpipe emissions, reducing your carbon footprint and helping to combat climate change. Additionally, with the cost of electricity typically lower than gasoline, driving a Tesla on a road trip can be more cost-effective in the long run, especially when taking advantage of Tesla’s Supercharger network, which offers competitive charging rates.

In summary, Tesla is an excellent choice for a road trip. With its extensive charging network, rapid charging speeds, navigation and trip planning tools, enhanced driving experience, and eco-friendly nature, Tesla offers a compelling package for those seeking electric adventures. Whether you’re planning a cross-country journey or exploring scenic routes, a Tesla can provide the range, convenience, and comfort needed for a successful road trip. So, charge up your Tesla, plan your route, and get ready to embark on an electrifying adventure that’s both enjoyable and sustainable.

What Is The Maximum Driving Distance For A Tesla?

The maximum driving distance for a Tesla varies depending on the specific model and battery configuration. Tesla offers different models with varying ranges, including the Model S, Model 3, Model X, and Model Y.

The range of each model can further vary based on the battery capacity chosen, such as Standard Range, Long Range, or Performance variants.

As of the latest models, the Long Range versions of Tesla cars can typically achieve a range of over 300 miles on a single charge. However, it’s important to note that factors such as driving conditions, speed, temperature, and use of accessories (such as climate control) can impact the actual driving distance.

Tesla’s continuous advancements in battery technology and efficiency continue to push the boundaries, and the driving ranges of their vehicles are subject to change and improvement over time.

Should I Always Precondition My Tesla?

Preconditioning your Tesla before every trip may not always be necessary, but it can be advantageous in certain situations. Here are some factors to consider when deciding whether to precondition your Tesla:

  • Extreme Weather Conditions : Preconditioning is particularly beneficial in extreme weather conditions. If you’re facing extremely hot or cold temperatures, preconditioning your Tesla helps bring the interior to a comfortable temperature before you start your journey. This not only enhances your driving experience but also conserves battery power by reducing the need for excessive heating or cooling while on the road.
  • Long Trips or High-Speed Travel : For long trips or high-speed travel, preconditioning can help optimize battery performance. By preconditioning your Tesla, you ensure that the battery is at an optimal temperature, allowing it to deliver maximum power and efficiency throughout your journey. This can help maintain a consistent range and minimize the impact of high-speed driving on battery performance.
  • Shorter Trips or Moderate Temperatures : Preconditioning may not be necessary for shorter trips or when the weather is mild. If you’re embarking on a relatively short journey and the weather is comfortable, your Tesla’s interior temperature will reach a pleasant level relatively quickly without the need for preconditioning. In such cases, you can save time by skipping the preconditioning step and rely on the car’s climate control system to adjust the temperature as needed during your drive.

Ultimately, the decision to precondition your Tesla depends on your specific circumstances and preferences. If you anticipate extreme weather conditions or are planning a long trip with high-speed driving, preconditioning can provide significant benefits. However, for shorter trips or moderate temperatures, preconditioning may not be essential. Consider the factors at play and make a decision that suits your needs to optimize your Tesla’s performance and driving experience.

How Do You Precondition A Tesla For A Road Trip?

Preconditioning a Tesla for a road trip is a valuable step to ensure a comfortable and efficient journey. Preconditioning involves preparing your Tesla’s interior temperature and battery for optimal performance before you start your trip. Here’s how you can effectively precondition your Tesla for a road trip:

  • Using the Tesla App : The Tesla mobile app allows you to remotely control various aspects of your car, including preconditioning. Before your road trip, open the app and select the “Climate” option. From there, you can set the desired cabin temperature for your car. Preconditioning your car remotely will ensure that the interior is at a comfortable temperature when you’re ready to hit the road.
  • Scheduled Departure : Another method for preconditioning is utilizing the “Scheduled Departure” feature in your Tesla. This feature enables you to set a specific departure time for your trip. By selecting this option, your Tesla will automatically begin preconditioning the battery and cabin temperature prior to your scheduled departure, ensuring optimal performance and a comfortable environment upon entering the car.
  • Plugged-In Preconditioning : If your Tesla is connected to a charging source, you can take advantage of plugged-in preconditioning. By plugging in your Tesla before your trip, you can initiate preconditioning through the car’s charging screen or the Tesla mobile app. Plugged-in preconditioning not only optimizes the battery temperature but also ensures that your car is charging to the desired level before you start your road trip.

Preconditioning your Tesla before a road trip is particularly beneficial in extreme weather conditions. By preparing the interior temperature and battery in advance, you can optimize energy consumption and maximize your driving range. This thoughtful step will enhance your overall driving experience and ensure a comfortable journey from the moment you set foot in your Tesla.

Top Tesla Road Trip Tips

Take a peek below for my valuable insights, practical tips, and real-life examples to ensure a smooth, enjoyable, and worry-free adventure. Fasten your seatbelt, charge up your Tesla, and let’s hit the open road!

Tesla Logo - Tesla Road Trip Tips

1. The Excitement of Tesla Road Trips

A Tesla road trip is more than just a means of transportation; it’s an opportunity to explore new horizons, embrace the freedom of the open road, and experience the power and efficiency of electric travel. Whether you’re embarking on a long road trip across multiple states or planning a weekend getaway, your Tesla is ready to take you on an adventure like no other. But before you buckle up and hit the road, let’s delve into the essential aspects of planning and executing a successful Tesla road trip.

2. Planning Your Tesla Road Trip

Before setting off on your Tesla road trip, meticulous planning is crucial to ensure a seamless and enjoyable journey. Tesla offers an integrated trip planner within its app and website, allowing you to chart your course, locate Tesla Supercharger stations, estimate charging times, and optimize your travel plans. By utilizing this powerful tool, you can plan your route, identify charging stops, and even customize your itinerary based on your preferences and needs. It’s important to consider factors such as the distance to your destination, the availability of charging infrastructure along the route, and any must-visit attractions or landmarks.

3. Maximizing Range and Overcoming Range Anxiety

One of the primary concerns for EV owners, especially during long road trips, is range anxiety—the fear of running out of battery charge before reaching the next charging station. However, with careful planning and a few smart strategies, you can overcome range anxiety and make the most of your Tesla’s range. Here are some key tips to maximize your Tesla’s range:

  • Regenerative Braking : Take advantage of regenerative braking, a feature that recaptures energy during deceleration and braking, converting it back into the battery. By adjusting your driving style to anticipate traffic conditions and use regenerative braking effectively, you can extend your Tesla’s range.
  • Optimize Charging Speed : When using Tesla Superchargers, aim for a charging session that brings your battery to around 80% rather than a full charge. Charging slows down significantly as the battery reaches its maximum capacity. By planning your charging stops strategically, you can minimize charging time while still ensuring a sufficient range to reach the next station.
  • Drive Efficiently : Maintain a steady speed and avoid rapid acceleration and excessive braking. Maintaining a consistent pace and adopting a smooth driving style can help conserve energy and extend your Tesla’s range. Higher speeds can decrease efficiency and reduce battery life.
  • Minimize Energy Consumption : Use your Tesla’s energy-saving features, such as adjusting climate control settings to conserve battery power. Additionally, avoid carrying unnecessary weight and keep your tires properly inflated for optimal efficiency.
  • Temperature: Be mindful of temperature, as extreme hot or cold conditions can impact battery performance.

4. Navigating the Open Road with Tesla and Google Maps

Your Tesla’s built-in navigation system is your best friend on a long road trip. Utilize it to plan the best route to your final destination, taking into account charging stops along the way. The navigation system will guide you to Supercharger locations and provide real-time information on your battery charge and range. Trust in the system and enjoy the peace of mind it provides.

While Tesla’s built-in navigation system is exceptional, incorporating Google Maps into your Tesla road trip can enhance your overall journey. Google Maps provides real-time traffic updates, alternative routes, and information about nearby amenities, including shopping centers, restaurants, and attractions.

By combining the power of Tesla’s navigation system with Google Maps, you can access the most up-to-date information and make informed decisions about your route, charging stops, and points of interest along the way.

Tesla At A Charging Station - Tesla Road Trip Tips

5. Charging Strategies for Long-Distance Travel

When embarking on a long road trip in your Tesla, strategic planning is key. Plan your route and identify Tesla Superchargers along the way. These Superchargers are designed specifically for Tesla vehicles, providing fast and convenient charging options. Plotting your journey with the help of your Tesla’s navigation system will ensure you have easy access to Superchargers and can cover long distances without range anxiety. Here are some tips to optimize your charging experience:

  • Utilize Tesla Superchargers : One of the biggest advantages of driving a Tesla is the network of Superchargers. These high-powered charging stations are strategically located along major highways, making long-distance travel a breeze. The Tesla app and website provide real-time information about Supercharger availability, so you can plan your charging stops accordingly. Plan your stops around Supercharger locations, ensuring you have ample time to charge your Tesla while taking a break. Superchargers can provide a significant charge in a relatively short time, allowing you to make the most of your road trip.
  • Consider Tesla Destination Chargers : While Superchargers are ideal for quick top-ups, you may also need to consider other charging options, such as public charging stations, especially in areas with limited Supercharger coverage. Tesla also offers destination chargers installed at hotels, resorts, and other locations. These chargers provide slower but convenient charging options, especially if you plan to stay overnight or take a longer break during your road trip. Research and book accommodations that offer Tesla destination chargers to wake up to a fully charged vehicle each day. By planning ahead, you can ensure a smooth and stress-free journey.
  • Research Public Charging Stations : In addition to Tesla-specific chargers, research public charging stations along your route. Familiarize yourself with the locations and availability of charging stations operated by other networks to have alternative options in case of any unforeseen circumstances or to fill in any charging gaps.
  • Optimize Charging Time : Use your charging stops wisely by taking advantage of nearby amenities. Explore the surroundings, enjoy a meal, or take a short walk to make the most of your charging time.

6. Adapting to Weather Conditions

Weather conditions can significantly impact the range and efficiency of your Tesla during a road trip. Cold weather, in particular, can reduce battery efficiency and potentially affect your travel plans. To mitigate the impact of cold weather on your Tesla’s range, consider the following:

  • Pre-condition Your Tesla : Use the Tesla app to pre-condition your vehicle before departing. Pre-conditioning allows you to warm up or cool down your Tesla while it’s still connected to a charger, optimizing the cabin temperature and minimizing the use of battery power.
  • Plan for Additional Charging Stops : Colder temperatures can decrease your Tesla’s range. Account for this by planning additional charging stops or adjusting your itinerary to include locations with charging infrastructure that can help offset any range reduction caused by cold weather.
  • Be Mindful of Energy Consumption : Running the heater or air conditioning excessively can affect your Tesla’s range. Adjust the climate control settings to a comfortable level and consider using the seat heaters, which consume less energy.

7. Essential Gear and Packing Tips

To ensure a hassle-free and comfortable Tesla road trip, it’s essential to pack the right gear and essentials. Here’s a checklist of items to consider:

  • Charging Adapters : Bring charging adapters that allow you to connect to non-Tesla charging stations. This ensures compatibility with different types of charging infrastructure you may encounter along the way.
  • Charging Cables : Don’t forget to pack your Tesla’s standard home charger cable. It’s handy for slower charging options, such as Tesla destination chargers or standard outlets when no other charging infrastructure is available.
  • Loading Information Label : Some regions may require
  • a loading information label for EV charging. Make sure to have one in your Tesla, as it provides important information for emergency personnel or technicians who may need to handle your vehicle during charging or maintenance.
  • Tesla Roof Rack : If you plan on bringing extra gear or luggage, consider investing in a Tesla roof rack. It provides a convenient and secure way to transport items, allowing you to maximize interior space and ensure a comfortable journey.
  • Essential Road Trip Supplies : Don’t forget to pack essentials like snacks, water, blankets, and a first aid kit. These items can come in handy during unexpected situations or if you encounter limited amenities along your route.
  • Entertainment and Connectivity : To keep yourself and your passengers entertained during the trip, consider bringing charging cables for smartphones, tablets, or other devices. You can also take advantage of Tesla’s built-in entertainment system, streaming services, and games to make the journey more enjoyable.

8. Staying Connected and Informed

Throughout your Tesla road trip, it’s important to stay connected and informed. The Tesla app provides valuable real-time updates and features that enhance your journey. Here’s how you can make the most of it:

  • Charging Progress : Use the Tesla app to monitor the progress of your charging session remotely. It allows you to keep track of the charging speed, estimated time remaining, and battery charge level without leaving the comfort of your car.
  • Supercharger Availability : The app provides information on nearby Supercharger stations, including their availability and the number of charging stalls. This feature helps you plan your next charging stop effectively and avoid potential wait times.
  • Navigation and Trip Planning : Tesla’s app offers seamless integration with the navigation system, allowing you to plan your route, review charging options, and optimize your trip right from your smartphone.
  • Service and Support : In case you encounter any issues during your road trip, the app enables you to schedule a service appointment conveniently. You can also access resources, FAQs, and contact Tesla’s support team for assistance.

9. Emergency Preparedness and Alternative Charging Options

While Tesla’s Supercharger network is extensive, it’s always wise to have a backup plan in case of unexpected situations. Here are some tips for emergency preparedness and alternative charging options:

  • Research Public Charging Stations : Familiarize yourself with public charging stations along your route, even if they are not Tesla-specific. Mapping out these locations ensures you have alternative options in case of unforeseen circumstances or if you need an additional charge to reach the next Supercharger station.
  • Credit Card and Payment : Some public charging stations may require a credit card for payment. Make sure you have a credit card with you or set up any necessary accounts or apps in advance to streamline the charging process.
  • Emergency Contact Information : Keep a list of emergency contact numbers, including Tesla’s roadside assistance, local towing services, and EV-specific service centers. This information can be invaluable in case of emergencies or technical issues during your trip.
  • Plan B Routes : Before hitting the road, identify alternative routes or charging stations that can serve as Plan B options. This foresight can prove useful if you encounter unexpected road closures, traffic congestion, or charging station maintenance.

10. Enhancing the Tesla Road Trip Experience

Beyond the practical aspects of planning and charging, a Tesla road trip is an opportunity to create lasting memories and fully embrace the experience. Here are some tips to enhance your journey:

  • Embrace the Scenic Route : While major highways may offer the fastest route, consider taking the scenic route on occasion. Exploring winding roads, beautiful landscapes, and charming towns can add a touch of adventure and excitement to your trip.
  • Take Frequent Stops : Break up your journey with frequent stops at interesting locations. Visit local attractions, parks, viewpoints, or historical sites along the way. These breaks not only offer a chance to stretch your legs but also allow you to immerse yourself in the local culture and enrich your travel experience.
  • Exploring Local Amenities – While charging your Tesla, take the opportunity to explore nearby shopping centers or attractions. Many Supercharger locations are conveniently situated near shopping centers, providing an opportunity to stretch your legs, grab a snack, or even do some shopping while your Tesla charges. Embrace the break, recharge yourself, and enjoy the local amenities.
  • Enjoy Local Cuisine : When stopping for meals, opt for local restaurants and eateries. Trying regional delicacies and immersing yourself in the local food scene adds a flavorful dimension to your road trip.
  • Connect with Other EV Owners : As an EV owner, you are part of a vibrant and supportive community of like-minded individuals. Engaging with other EV owners, whether through online forums, social media groups, EV-specific apps, or local meet-ups, can provide valuable insights and tips for your road trip. Share experiences, gather recommendations, and connect with fellow Tesla owners who have embarked on their own epic road trips. The EV community is a wealth of knowledge waiting to be explored.

11. Exploring Iconic Destinations and National Parks

A Tesla road trip offers the perfect opportunity to explore iconic destinations and breathtaking national parks. Here are some notable locations to consider adding to your itinerary:

  • San Francisco : Drive across the iconic Golden Gate Bridge and explore the vibrant city of San Francisco. Visit popular attractions like Fisherman’s Wharf, Alcatraz Island, or take a scenic drive along the stunning Pacific Coast Highway.
  • Los Angeles : Experience the glamour of Hollywood, stroll along Venice Beach, or explore the cultural hotspots of downtown Los Angeles. Don’t miss the opportunity to take a memorable drive along Mulholland Drive or catch a beautiful sunset at Griffith Observatory.
  • National Parks : Visit renowned national parks such as Yosemite, Joshua Tree, or Grand Canyon National Park. These natural wonders offer majestic landscapes, hiking trails, and breathtaking viewpoints, allowing you to connect with nature and create unforgettable memories.

12. Reflecting on the Tesla Road Trip Experience

As your Tesla road trip comes to an end, take some time to reflect on the incredible journey you’ve just undertaken. Capture the moments through photographs, journaling, or creating a digital travelogue. Share your experiences with friends, family, and fellow EV enthusiasts, inspiring others to embark on their own electric adventures.

Final Thoughts

Embarking on a long-distance road trip in your Tesla is an adventure like no other. By following these Tesla road trip tips, including strategic planning, utilizing Superchargers, connecting with the EV community, and making the most of your Tesla’s features, you can ensure a successful and enjoyable journey. Embrace the freedom of driving an electric vehicle, and let your Tesla’s navigation system guide you to new destinations and unforgettable experiences. So, grab the steering wheel, charge up, and hit the road with confidence!

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How to plan a road trip while driving a tesla.

Avoid any unpleasant surprises by planning your road trip with a Tesla

EVs (electric vehicles) have changed the automobile landscape. While some new players and traditional car-makers are in the EV space, you can't deny Tesla's role in starting the trend. With several Tesla models' long-driving range and the company's ever-growing Supercharger network in North America, it's easier than ever for Tesla owners to plan an adventurous road trip.

While a Tesla delivers zero emissions, low costs, and better performance, mile range is one of the worrying factors before a long road trip. Although the number of EV stations has increased due to Tesla's Supercharge network and Electrify America initiatives, they aren't a match compared to gas stations, and it can be difficult to spot one in specific areas. That's why it's essential to plan in advance before you go on the road with your Tesla Model S, 3, X, or Y.

Why do you plan a road trip in advance for your Tesla?

Range anxiety is the biggest reason for advanced road trip planning with any EV. Factor in the availability of charging stations, charging time, and compatibility with your Tesla on your long route. After all, you don't want to get stuck somewhere where you don't have friends and family. You should also maintain an extra buffer as unforeseen road closures may force you to take a long route to reach the destination.

You can use Tesla's Go Anywhere tool, glance over the Supercharger network, check your tires, note terrains, track temperatures, and keep other accessories like the top car chargers ready for a smooth journey.

Understand your Tesla's range

Before discussing suggestions for planning a road trip with a Tesla, it's essential to understand how your EV's range is calculated and how it translates in real life. Your Tesla vehicle's claimed range is based on EPA standards. While it's relatively accurate, it misses out on factors like temperatures, driving speeds, road conditions, tire pressure, and more that may affect your Tesla's range.

Freezing temperatures affect your Tesla's range. It may reduce your EV's range by 20% to 30%. An active car heater further impacts the claimed range.

Plan your Tesla road trip online

Tesla's Go Anywhere is an excellent travel-planning tool to get started. The tool is available on Tesla's large screen and on the web. You can select your Tesla model, glance over the claimed range, enter a location and destination, choose stops, and check the route information (powered by Google Maps) with Superchargers.

Tesla goes a step ahead and shows a maximum charge rate with an estimated charging time at each Supercharger stop. You can plan your stopovers at shopping centers and nearby attractions based on available data.

If a Supercharge isn't available in a region, Go Anywhere lists slow charges on your destination route. Apart from Tesla's built-in tool, you can use third-party apps like A Better Routeplanner that offer more details like weather information, real-time navigation, the ability to manage multiple trips, and more.

Pick your charging stations wisely

Apart from using Go Anywhere and other third-party tools, pick your charging stations smartly. Instead of choosing a charging station in a deserted area, stop at a station with nearby attractions to make your journey memorable. You can easily squeeze in two or three activities.

You should also consider booking accommodations where an EV charging facility is available. Even a slow charger is fine, as you will be juicing up your Tesla overnight.

Check your Tires and consider aero wheels

Incorrect type pressure can affect your Tesla's mileage range by 3% to 4%. Find the Tire and Loading Information label on the center door pillar and maintain a recommended tire pressure. You should also closely inspect the tires for cuts, wear, and bulges. If you find something unusual with them, schedule a service appointment using your Tesla app.

If you have the budget, consider installing aero wheels to improve efficiency and range during long-distance travel.

Activate regenerative breaking

All Tesla models come with regenerative braking to convert kinetic energy into electricity. When you take your foot off the accelerator, regenerative braking creates on-the-go energy, allowing you to go the extra mile. Tesla recommends setting regenerative breaking to standard.

Don't forget charging accessories

You should also pack essential accessories like a Tesla charging cable, portable charging connector, and adapters for several charging networks. You can charge at different charging networks without worrying about compatibility issues.

Have a memorable road trip

Planning a long road trip with a Tesla doesn't require rocket science. Keep a realistic range, pin down Superchargers, and pick your stays strategically to avoid surprises. If you plan to pass through several dead zones with glitchy network connectivity, download Google Maps offline to avoid getting lost in the wrong direction.


Best Tesla Trip Planner App in 2024 (According to Owners)

best tesla route planner app,

Last Updated on January 24, 2024 by Rose Morah

If you’re planning a Tesla road trip, this article will help you know:

  • The best Tesla trip planner app .
  • The most preferred Tesla trip planner app by most owners
  • Tesla Navigation vs A Better Route Planner (ABRP).
  • When to use ABRP vs. Tesla Navigation.
  • What not to expect from all the EV Trip planners?

See also: Smart Tesla long-distance road trip tips .

Best Tesla route planner app

Most preferred tesla trip planner app by tesla owners, tesla navigation vs a better route planner (abrp), why should you use the in-car tesla navigation when driving, when do most tesla owners use abrp based on our surveys, when do most tesla owners use plugshare & other ev route planning, other available tesla trip planner options, what not to expect from all the ev trip planners.

From experience and other Tesla owners, the in-built Tesla trip planner (Go Anywhere) and A Better Route Planner (ABRP) are the best Tesla route planners overall.

Of course, there are many other good EV route planners but these two are among the best and highly recommended for planning Tesla road trips.

We did a survey to find out what app other Tesla owners preferred using when going on Tesla road trips. 

Results from the survey showed that 99% recommended two route planner apps: (Tesla navigation and ABRP) and only 1% recommended Waze and Plugshare.

The table below shows a summary of the survey results;

The in-built Tesla trip planner has drastically improved over the years and that’s why it is still preferred by so many Tesla owners. 

The following are the main differences between the two:

When to use ABRP and Tesla Navigation

I’d recommend you use both apps together. That is because ABRP is great for planning a road trip and the Tesla Navigation is best for actual navigation during the trip.

ABRP also works very well to ensure your trip is feasible. 

We have a detailed article on How to use A Better Route Planner .

Best EV Route Planner.

ABRP Vs Plugshare: Which One is The Best EV Trip Planner App?

See also: Cool and Must-Have Tesla Model 3 and Y Accessories .

  • It will route based on what’s happening in real-time

It is best to use the in-car Tesla Navigation when driving as opposed to ABRP mainly because it will route you based on what’s happening in real-time, like traffic, full chargers, etc. 

This means it does more live determinations while you are in transit than ABRP.

For example, during our Tesla road trips, we have experienced times where the car reroutes us if the chargers are occupied . I.e. it finds nearby chargers and reroutes us. This ends up saving us time during road trips.

  • It allows the car to precondition before arriving at a Supercharger

This will help speed up the charging, thereby saving you time at the charging stop.

You may also like: 4 Best Tesla Model 3 Tires (According to Model 3 Owners) .

The vast majority of Tesla owners use ABRP on their phones to keep track of the overall road trip.

They use ABRP to get a clear picture of the trip. That is, to know if they can skip a supercharger, or have a rough idea of how many stops are in a route.

  • When they want to find or avoid specific chargers along their route.
  • When they want to read the charger station reviews (the comments people leave after using the chargers).
  • When they want to find places to sleep as they charge overnight.
  • To check roadblocks, accidents, constructions, traffic and speed camera locations, and other hazards.

See also: How to Maximize Tesla Range & Reduce Battery Drain on Tesla .

How To Camp In A Tesla Like A Pro .

How Accurate Is The Tesla Trip Planner After The Recent Update?

Apart from ABRP, Tesla’s in-built route planner, PlugShare, and Waze the following are other available trip planner options:

  • Google Maps (EV route planning)

Google Maps EV route planning is also great in helping you plan your Tesla road trip.

It helps you achieve the following:

  • It helps you find the best route.
  • When planning your trip, it calculates your next charging stops based on the battery range.
  • It gives you the estimated time it will take to charge your car. This is by putting into consideration the type of charger (fast or regular).
  • Drivers can be able to check charger availability in advance.

See also: How To Determine The Cost Of A Tesla Road Trip .

  • Apple Maps EV routing

Apple has come up with Apple Maps EV route planner that is almost similar to Google map’s EV route planner.

Best Tesla road trip planner app

So, basically, when taking a long road trip, your choice of trip planner app will mainly depend on your road trip goals.

  • Do not expect the trip planner to be 100% accurate

About 90% of the time when planning a trip, the charging times are always never the same as what you see on the EV trip planners.

Take, for instance, your Tesla trip planner predicted that you would arrive at a Supercharger with about 40% charge only to end up arriving with 10%. 

This means that you will either have to charge for longer than you had planned on the trip planner or consume enough charge to take you to the next available/closest charge stop.

And this explains why you always see charging time differences when planning a trip on ABRP vs. the in-built Tesla route planner. This also applies to other EV trip planner apps.

Once you start driving, the car will constantly be evaluating whether it will manage to arrive at the next charging stop, or reroute you based on how much charge you have. 

Additionally, it will change the original planned route if it realizes that it is consuming more energy than it originally ‘thought’ it would. 

See the Longest Range Electric Car .

  • Don’t always expect to see a perfect 250kW or 150kW when charging

Most of the time, during a charging session, you will never see a perfect 250kW or 150kW. Sometimes, this may even end up changing your entire original plan on the trip planner. 

Additionally, if you stop at a 150kW paired charger and someone pulls over right next to you, this means you will have a longer charging time than what the trip planner had originally predicted.

Even if you’re using the best Tesla trip planner to plan your road trip, it is important to always be flexible as anything can happen along the way.

planning a trip in a tesla

Hello there! My name is Rose. I’m passionate about electric cars and clean energy. My adventurous spirit and journalistic pursuits make each day fascinating and far greater. I consider traveling not just about the grandeur moments, but the little elements that transform the whole experience.

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Home » Plan Your Next Adventure with Tesla Trip Planner on Your Tesla App

Plan Your Next Adventure with Tesla Trip Planner on Your Tesla App

December 22, 2023 3 min read

planning a trip in a tesla

If you’re planning a road trip in your Tesla, the Tesla Trip Planner is an essential tool that will help you navigate to your destination while ensuring that you have enough charge to get there. The Tesla Trip Planner is a feature available on the Tesla mobile app that lets you plan your route and includes all charging stops based on your vehicle’s current energy level.

The app will also show you estimated charging times, so you can plan your time at each stop for a stress-free trip. The Tesla Trip Planner is a simple and intuitive tool that makes it easy to plan your road trip. To use the Trip Planner, simply go to the location section of the Tesla app , tap on “ navigate ,” and input your destination .

The app will then find Superchargers along the route, g ive an ETA, show how much to charge at each charger, display the state of your car’s battery, and plot the route on a map . With the Tesla Trip Planner, you can be sure that you’ll never run out of charge on the road.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • The Tesla Trip Planner is a feature available on the Tesla mobile app that lets you plan your route and includes all charging stops based on your vehicle’s current energy level.
  • The app will also show you estimated charging times, so you can plan your time at each stop for a stress-free trip.
  • With the Tesla Trip Planner, you can be sure that you’ll never run out of charge on the road.

Understanding the Tesla Trip Planner

If you’re planning a trip in your Tesla, the Tesla Trip Planner is a must-have tool to help you navigate your journey. The Trip Planner is a feature of the Tesla mobile app that allows you to plan your route, find charging stops, and get real-time updates on your battery level and charging progress. Here are some core features of the Tesla Trip Planner:

Core Features

  • Plan your route : With the Tesla Trip Planner, you can plan your route by entering your destination and any additional stops you want to make along the way. The Trip Planner will then calculate the most efficient route based on your Tesla’s battery level and the location of nearby charging stations.
  • Find charging stops : The Tesla Trip Planner will show you the location of nearby charging stations, including Superchargers and other charging networks. You can filter your search by charging speed and availability to find the best charging options for your trip.
  • Get real-time updates : The Tesla Trip Planner provides real-time updates on your battery level and charging progress. You can see how long it will take to charge your Tesla at each stop and get alerts when your battery is fully charged and ready to go.

Integration with Tesla App

The Tesla Trip Planner is fully integrated with the Tesla mobile app , so you can plan your trip and send it directly to your Tesla’s navigation system. You can also use the app to monitor your charging progress and get alerts when your Tesla is ready to go.

Real-Time Data and Updates

The Tesla Trip Planner uses real-time data to provide accurate information on charging station availability and charging speed. You can also get updates on traffic conditions and other factors that may affect your trip.

Hardware and Software Requirements

The Tesla Trip Planner requires a Tesla Model 3, Model S, or Model X with software version 4.20.69 or later. You’ll also need to have the Tesla mobile app installed on your smartphone and paired with your Tesla using phone key pairing.

Tesla Models Compatibility

The Tesla Trip Planner is compatible with all Tesla Model 3, Model S, and Model X electric vehicles.

Additional Tesla App Features

In addition to the Tesla Trip Planner, the Tesla mobile app offers a range of other features to help you manage your Tesla. You can use the app to unlock and start your Tesla , monitor your battery level and charging progress , and control your Tesla’s climate system . You can also use the app to find nearby Superchargers and other charging stations , and get directions to your destination .

Overall, the Tesla Trip Planner is an essential tool for any Tesla owner planning a road trip. With its intuitive interface, real-time data, and integration with the Tesla mobile app, the Trip Planner makes it easy to plan your route, find charging stops, and get updates on your battery level and charging progress.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do i access the tesla trip planner on my tesla app.

To access the Tesla trip planner on your Tesla app, simply open the app and select the “ Trips ” tab at the bottom of the screen. From there, you can enter your destination and the app will automatically generate a route for you, complete with charging stops and estimated travel time.

Is there a cost calculator available on the Tesla trip planner?

Yes, the Tesla trip planner includes a cost calculator that takes into account the cost of charging your vehicle at Supercharger stations along your route. The cost calculator is updated in real-time, so you can get an accurate estimate of your trip cost.

Can I plan a trip with my Tesla using the app?

Yes, you can plan a trip with your Tesla using the app . The Tesla trip planner allows you to enter your destination and generate a route that includes charging stops along the way. You can also send the route directly to your Tesla’s navigation system for easy access while driving.

Are there any third-party Tesla trip planner apps available?

While there are third-party trip planner apps available for Tesla vehicles, we recommend using the official Tesla app for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

Is the Tesla trip planner accurate for long-distance travel?

Yes, the Tesla trip planner is accurate for long-distance travel . The app takes into account factors such as your vehicle’s battery level, charging speed, and Supercharger availability to generate the most efficient route possible.

Does the Tesla trip planner include Supercharger locations?

Yes, the Tesla trip planner includes Supercharger locations along your route . The app will automatically generate a route that includes charging stops at Supercharger stations when necessary. You can also view Supercharger locations on the map within the app.

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  • Travel Guide

How To Plan A Road Trip In A Tesla

Published: November 26, 2023

Modified: December 28, 2023

by Sondra Rath

  • Plan Your Trip
  • Travel Tips



Embarking on a road trip can be an exhilarating experience, and what better way to hit the open road than in a Tesla? With their sleek design, cutting-edge technology, and eco-friendly features, Teslas are the perfect vehicles for long-distance adventures. Whether you’re planning a scenic drive through the countryside or a cross-country trek, a road trip in a Tesla offers both excitement and sustainability.

Not only does a Tesla provide a smooth and comfortable ride, but it also offers the convenience of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations strategically placed across the country. With a little pre-planning and attention to detail, you can enjoy a hassle-free journey and take advantage of the impressive range of your Tesla’s battery.

In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the steps to plan a memorable road trip in a Tesla. From choosing your destination to packing the essential supplies, we’ll cover everything you need to know to ensure a successful and enjoyable adventure. So buckle up, charge your Tesla, and let’s hit the road!

Choose Your Destination

The first step in planning a road trip in a Tesla is deciding on your destination. Whether you have a specific place in mind or you’re open to exploring new destinations, consider factors such as distance, scenery, and attractions that align with your interests. Are you interested in picturesque landscapes, vibrant cities, or historic landmarks? Do you prefer coastal drives or mountainous terrains? These considerations will help you narrow down your options and create an itinerary that suits your preferences.

When choosing your destination, it’s also important to take into account the availability of EV charging stations. Tesla offers a widespread Supercharger network that allows for convenient charging along major highways and popular travel routes. Research the charging infrastructure and amenities available at your chosen destinations, as well as any local incentives or discounts for electric vehicle owners.

Once you’ve selected your destination, consider the ideal season for your road trip. Some areas may be more enjoyable during certain times of the year, while others may have specific events or festivals that you wouldn’t want to miss. Checking weather forecasts and local events calendars will help you plan your trip accordingly.

Lastly, don’t forget to factor in the duration of your trip. Consider how much time you have available and how far you’re willing to travel. If you have a limited timeframe, it may be more suitable to choose a destination that is closer to your starting point. On the other hand, if you have more time to spare, you can embark on a more extensive journey and explore multiple destinations along the way.

Plan Your Route

Once you have chosen your destination, the next step is to plan your route. Mapping out a detailed itinerary will help you stay organized and make the most of your road trip. Start by using a reliable navigation tool or GPS system to identify the best route to your destination. You can also make use of Tesla’s built-in navigation system, which considers charging points and provides real-time updates on available Supercharger stations.

Consider incorporating scenic drives and attractions along the way to enhance your road trip experience. Research points of interest, national parks, landmarks, and other hidden gems that you can explore during your journey. This will not only break up the drive but also allow you to immerse yourself in the beauty and culture of the places you pass through.

When planning your route, factor in the charging needs of your Tesla. Identify Supercharger stations along your route and estimate the charging time required at each location. Teslas charge quickly at Supercharger stations, allowing you to utilize your time efficiently during breaks. Plan for regular charging stops to ensure you have enough battery power to reach your destination comfortably.

In addition to Superchargers, consider incorporating destination charging locations such as hotels or tourist attractions where you can park and recharge your Tesla at a slower rate. The Tesla Destination Charging network provides access to a growing number of charging options at various destinations, allowing you to top up your battery while you explore nearby attractions.

Be sure to also have a backup plan in case any charging stations are out of service or unavailable. Keep a list of alternative charging options, such as public EV charging stations or other Tesla-compatible charging networks, that you can rely on if needed.

Charging Locations

One of the key aspects to consider when planning a road trip in a Tesla is the availability of charging locations along your route. Tesla owners have the advantage of a well-established Supercharger network, which provides fast and convenient charging at strategic locations. These Supercharger stations are typically located near major highways, making them easily accessible during your journey.

To ensure a smooth road trip, it is important to familiarize yourself with the map of Supercharger locations. Tesla’s official website and mobile app provide up-to-date information on the availability and status of Superchargers, allowing you to plan your stops accordingly. Make note of the distances between Supercharger stations to estimate when you need to recharge your Tesla.

In addition to Superchargers, Tesla also offers Destination Chargers at various hotels, restaurants, and other locations. These chargers are designed to provide overnight or extended charging options while you explore nearby areas. Include destination charging locations along your route, especially if you plan on staying at hotels or visiting attractions that offer Tesla charging amenities.

When using Superchargers or Destination Chargers, it’s important to be mindful of charging station etiquette. Avoid occupying charging spots once your Tesla is sufficiently charged, as it may limit access for other EV owners. Tesla’s navigation system can help you determine the ideal charging time for optimal efficiency.

Aside from Tesla charging options, it’s also worth familiarizing yourself with public EV charging stations along your route. There are numerous third-party charging networks that offer compatibility with Teslas, allowing you to access additional charging resources if needed. It is advisable to have a list of backup charging options to rely on in case a Supercharger or Destination Charger is unavailable or out of service.

When planning your road trip, prioritize charging stops to maintain a comfortable buffer of battery range. This will help you avoid unnecessary stress or range anxiety during your journey. By strategically mapping out your charging locations and considering alternative options, you can ensure a seamless and enjoyable road trip in your Tesla.

Prepare Your Tesla

Preparing your Tesla for a road trip is essential to ensure a smooth and comfortable journey. Before hitting the road, it’s important to make sure your Tesla is in good condition and ready to take on the miles ahead.

The first step is to check the overall health of your Tesla’s battery. Ensure that the battery is charged to its maximum capacity before you start your trip. This will give you the longest possible range to work with between charging stops. Take advantage of Tesla’s scheduled departure feature, which allows you to pre-condition your vehicle and optimize the battery’s temperature for maximum efficiency.

Next, inspect the tires and ensure they are properly inflated according to Tesla’s recommended tire pressure. Well-inflated tires improve energy efficiency and contribute to a smoother ride. Don’t forget to also check the tire tread for any signs of wear and tear, and replace them if necessary.

Aside from mechanical preparations, it’s essential to pack an emergency kit for your Tesla. This kit should include items such as a first aid kit, jumper cables, flashlight, tire repair kit, and a portable electric air pump. It’s better to be prepared for any unexpected situations on the road.

Another crucial consideration is downloading and familiarizing yourself with the Tesla mobile app. This app allows you to monitor your vehicle’s charging status, pre-condition the interior temperature, and even locate nearby charging stations. It also offers remote features such as locking and unlocking your Tesla, which can be helpful during your road trip.

Lastly, it’s a good idea to plan your entertainment options for the journey. Teslas come equipped with a variety of entertainment features, including a large touchscreen display, internet connectivity, and streaming services. Download your favorite music, podcasts, or audiobooks to enjoy during your drive.

By taking the time to prepare your Tesla and ensure it’s in prime condition, you can embark on your road trip with peace of mind, knowing that you are well-equipped for the adventure ahead.

Pack Necessary Supplies

Packing the necessary supplies is crucial to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable road trip in your Tesla. From essential items to convenience-enhancing extras, having the right supplies on hand will make your journey more convenient and stress-free.

First and foremost, consider the basics like a roadside emergency kit, which should include items such as a spare tire, tire iron, jack, and jumper cables. It’s also a good idea to have a basic toolkit and a portable tire inflator in case of emergencies.

Additionally, pack a first aid kit with essential medical supplies such as bandages, pain relievers, and antiseptic wipes. While you hope to never need it, it’s always better to be prepared for unforeseen circumstances.

For longer journeys, consider packing a cooler with snacks and beverages to keep you refreshed and energized. Opt for healthy snacks like fruits, nuts, and granola bars. Don’t forget to bring plenty of water to stay hydrated during the trip.

To keep your Tesla clean and tidy, bring along cleaning supplies such as microfiber towels, glass cleaner, and interior wipes. These will come in handy if you need to wipe away dust or spills along the way.

When it comes to entertainment, bring your charging cables for smartphones, tablets, and other devices. This will ensure that you can keep your devices powered up and connected during the journey. Additionally, consider bringing headphones or earphones to enjoy your favorite entertainment without disturbing fellow passengers.

Comfort is key during a road trip, so pack pillows, blankets, and travel-sized pillows to make long hours in the car more enjoyable. You can also consider bringing car seat organizers or storage solutions to keep items within easy reach and minimize clutter.

Finally, don’t forget your travel documents, including your driver’s license, registration, and insurance information. Keep them organized in a secure and easily accessible location.

By packing the necessary supplies, you’ll be prepared for any situation and have a more comfortable and enjoyable road trip experience in your Tesla.

Safety Considerations

When embarking on a road trip in your Tesla, prioritizing safety is of utmost importance. By keeping a few safety considerations in mind, you can ensure a secure and worry-free journey.

First and foremost, always make sure to adhere to traffic laws and regulations. Follow speed limits, use turn signals, and maintain a safe distance from other vehicles on the road. Tesla’s Autopilot feature can assist with driving tasks, but it’s crucial to remain alert and ready to take control at any moment.

Before beginning your trip, perform a thorough inspection of your Tesla. Check the functionality and condition of lights, brakes, and windshield wipers to ensure they are in proper working order. Utilize Tesla’s built-in vehicle health monitoring system to monitor any potential issues or alerts that may arise during your journey.

While driving, always keep your eyes on the road and avoid distractions. Tesla’s touchscreen display provides easy access to navigation and entertainment features, but it’s important to use these features responsibly and during appropriate times, such as during charging stops or when the vehicle is parked.

Maintaining proper tire pressure is key to maximizing energy efficiency and ensuring optimal handling. Monitor and adjust tire pressure regularly to keep your Tesla’s tires within the recommended range. This will not only improve fuel efficiency but also enhance driving safety and traction.

When it comes to charging your Tesla, make sure to only use official Tesla charging stations or trusted third-party chargers. Using unauthorized or faulty charging equipment can pose safety risks and may affect the performance of your vehicle. Be cautious when utilizing public charging stations and ensure they are in good condition.

In extreme weather conditions, take extra precautions to ensure safety. In hot weather, park your Tesla in shaded areas to minimize battery drain and prevent overheating. In cold weather, utilize Tesla’s pre-conditioning feature to warm up the vehicle prior to departure. This will ensure a comfortable cabin temperature and optimal battery performance.

Lastly, it’s always a good idea to inform friends or family members about your travel plans. Share your itinerary, estimated arrival times, and key contact information. This way, someone is aware of your whereabouts and can assist in case of emergencies.

By following these safety considerations, you can enjoy a secure and worry-free road trip in your Tesla, knowing that you’ve taken the necessary precautions to protect yourself and your passengers.

Entertainment Options

A road trip in your Tesla offers the perfect opportunity to enjoy various forms of entertainment while cruising along the open road. Whether you’re traveling solo or with family and friends, having a range of entertainment options at your disposal will enhance your overall experience.

One of the key features of a Tesla is the large touchscreen display, which serves as the command center for your vehicle. Take advantage of this by exploring the various entertainment options available. Access streaming services like Spotify, TuneIn Radio, or podcasts to enjoy your favorite music, news, or podcasts during your journey.

If you prefer a more immersive experience, Tesla’s built-in web browser allows you to browse the internet, check out social media, or catch up on your favorite websites. Just make sure to use these features responsibly and only when parked or during charging stops to prioritize safety.

Consider downloading your favorite audio books or podcasts onto your smartphone or tablet before your road trip. This way, you can listen to captivating stories or informative content while driving. Audiobooks can be a great way to entertain passengers of all ages during long stretches on the road.

If you’re traveling with kids, make sure to pack some entertainment options specifically tailored for them. Tablets with pre-downloaded movies, portable gaming devices, or even traditional favorites like coloring books and travel-sized board games can keep them occupied and happy during the journey.

In addition to digital entertainment, take advantage of the beautiful scenery along your route. Encourage everyone in the car to look out the windows and appreciate the landscapes passing by. Engage your companions in conversation about the trip, play car games like “I spy,” or create a road trip playlist together.

Lastly, don’t forget to pack your favorite snacks and beverages to enjoy during the journey. Snacking on local treats or indulging in your favorite comfort foods can add to the overall enjoyment of the road trip experience.

Remember that a road trip is as much about the journey as it is about the destination. By incorporating a variety of entertainment options into your Tesla road trip, you can create lasting memories and make the hours on the road even more enjoyable for everyone involved.

Tips for a Smooth Trip

A smooth and hassle-free road trip in your Tesla is the ultimate goal. To help you achieve just that, here are some valuable tips to ensure a seamless journey:

1. Plan and book ahead: Research and book accommodations and attractions in advance to secure the best deals and availability. This includes hotels with Tesla Destination Chargers, if possible.

2. Time your charging stops: Utilize Tesla’s onboard navigation system or mobile app to plan your charging stops strategically. Aim for shorter and more frequent stops to optimize charging time and make the most of your journey.

3. Check for software updates: Ensure that your Tesla’s software is up to date before your road trip. Software updates often include new features and improvements, so it’s worth keeping your vehicle updated for the best experience.

4. Pack essential documents: Bring all necessary documents, such as your driver’s license, insurance information, and registration, as well as any travel documents required for your trip.

5. Be mindful of energy usage: To maximize your Tesla’s battery range, avoid excessive acceleration and maintain a steady speed. Utilize Tesla’s regenerative braking feature to help recharge the battery while driving.

6. Use Tesla’s Trip Planner: Take advantage of Tesla’s Trip Planner feature, which provides up-to-date information on charging stations, estimated arrival times, and energy consumption. This tool can help you plan and adjust your route as needed.

7. Stay informed about local laws and regulations: Familiarize yourself with the traffic laws, speed limits, and parking regulations of the areas you’ll be visiting. This ensures you can comply with local regulations and avoid unnecessary fines or penalties.

8. Practice good charging station etiquette: When using Superchargers or Destination Chargers, be considerate of other EV owners. Move your vehicle once charging is complete to allow others to access the charging station.

9. Take breaks and stay hydrated: Long hours on the road can be tiring, so remember to take regular breaks to stretch, rest, and stay hydrated. This will help keep you alert and focused during your journey.

10. Enjoy the journey: Remember that a road trip is not just about reaching the destination but also about the experiences along the way. Take time to appreciate the scenery, try local cuisine, and create unforgettable memories with your companions.

By following these tips, you can ensure a smooth and enjoyable road trip in your Tesla. Embrace the adventure, stay prepared, and take in all the wonders of the open road!

Embarking on a road trip in a Tesla offers a unique and exciting opportunity to explore the world while enjoying the benefits of sustainable and high-performance electric vehicles. By following the guidelines and tips outlined in this comprehensive guide, you can plan and execute a memorable and smooth road trip adventure.

From choosing a destination that aligns with your interests to meticulously planning your route and charging stops, careful preparation is key to a successful journey. Keeping your Tesla in top condition, packing necessary supplies, and prioritizing safety considerations will ensure a worry-free and enjoyable experience on the road.

Entertainment options such as streaming services, audiobooks, and engaging with the scenic beauty around you will make the trip even more enjoyable. And, by adhering to the tips for a smooth trip, you can navigate the roads with ease and maximize the range and performance of your Tesla.

Remember, a road trip is not just about reaching the destination, but also about the moments and memories created along the way. Embrace the freedom of the open road, appreciate the stunning landscapes, and savor the experiences shared with your travel companions.

So, charge up your Tesla, plan your itinerary, and get ready for a road trip filled with adventure, sustainability, and unforgettable moments. Your Tesla awaits to take you on a journey of discovery and exhilaration. Enjoy the ride!


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TeslaThunder – Tesla Accessories, Insights, & How-To's

9 Tesla Road Trip Tips for Long Travel

October 30, 2020

Many rent RVs, minivans, and trucks to go on a road trip, can’t go wrong with that. Have you ever thought of doing so with an electric vehicle such as your Tesla?

Sure, electric cars are practical and efficient, but traveling long distances in one requires a little more planning. You will have to make sure that your batteries have enough juice to get you to the next charging station safely, and plan stops accordingly.

Tesla’s network of Superchargers makes long drives across the country feasible. Still, if you’re traveling along less-frequented routes, you may have to make use of traditional charging stations or even regular 120v plugs. Every time you stop for a recharge, you will have some exploring time, which can amp up your entire experience. With a little careful planning, a road trip with a Tesla could be the best thing ever.

Tips for Road Trips in a Tesla

road trip in a tesla

1. Check the Tesla supercharger map!

So, you’ve got a final destination in your sights, but before you can get there, you have to plan your entire trip around recharging stations. You don’t have to worry about the range because there are charging stations everywhere, but you do need to learn about the boundaries of your car.

If you drive faster than you should, the batteries will lose juice quicker, and if you’re not careful, you might find yourself stuck in the middle of nowhere. Head to Tesla’s official website and check the supercharger map between you and your final destination. Plan breaks on locations where your car’s batteries will be half empty. The vehicle will recharge faster, and you will never run out of juice.

Related: Getting the best range with your Tesla

2. Use the built-in trip planner

If you’re the type of person who likes to plan out every last detail of the trip, excellent. However, if you’re not so skilled at planning everything out, Tesla’s built-in trip planner will do everything for you. It’s a convenient feature that will make sure that you never run out of power, no matter where you’re going.

The planner will show you all charging stations along your route, with details like how long you need to drive between two stations and how long will it take for your car to recharge once you stop. You won’t have to check your maps all the time; just input your starting point and your destination, and the app will take care of everything else.

If you prefer to use a mobile device or a laptop to plan your trip, you can also use Tesla’s web-based road trip planner .

3. Arrange “car fill-ups” and “human fill-ups” to happen at the same time

tesla supercharger charging

Electric cars need a recharge as much as the people inside of it. The entire trip will revolve around recharging stations, so you should plan to take breaks based on your car’s battery levels. Since most charging stations are located near malls and gas stations, you should plan your meals and sightseeing to happen simultaneously while your Tesla is charging.

Hook your Tesla onto a charging station and stretch your legs a bit. Have something to eat if you’re hungry and take the time to see the town or go to the mall and enjoy a coffee or whatever else you want. By making sure that you satisfy your needs while your car is charging, you will save some time, and you won’t be sitting in your car bored for hours.

4. Have charging adapters ready

tesla charging adapter for road trip

Even though Tesla’s app will show you a detailed route with the closest charging stations, you should bring a charging adapter along, or a charging extension cord , just in case. You never know if you’re going to have to take a detour at some point, so it’s always a good idea to have an adapter you can use to charge your car’s batteries anywhere. The adapter is not that big, so it won’t take up a lot of trunk space. If you don’t have one when you need it, you could end up being completely helpless far away from a charging station.

5. If possible, charge when the battery level is below 50%

Some Tesla owners prefer to keep their batteries above 50% at all times, and that’s fine, but the batteries charge faster when they are more than half empty. So, to save some time, it’s better that you allow the batteries to deplete to let’s say 30 or 35 percent, and then stop for a recharge, rather than doing so every time a station is close by.

It’s also a manner of personal preference. If you like making frequent breaks to stretch your legs, this might even cut your road trip charging time, depending on your driving.

6. Set driving mode to conserve energy

Electric cars have a tremendous amount of torque that allows you to accelerate very quickly. However, a heavy foot will make the batteries deplete sooner, leaving you with much less range than expected.

Turn the Range Mode on to limit the amount of power the car uses and increase efficiency. That means that you won’t be able to accelerate so quickly, but you will get a significant increase in mileage. Keep your foot off the gas, and you will be able to drive much further.

7. If driving in the winter, plan for a reduction in range

Winter road trips are sometimes even cooler than summer trips. The landscapes are often breathtaking, and there’s something special when you sit in a warm Tesla while everything around you is freezing cold. With that said, you should also know that batteries don’t perform the same in low temperatures and that heating the car will use a considerable amount of juice.

winter travel in tesla

The batteries powering your car will become less efficient, so you will have to plan more frequent stops. Remember that before hitting the road. You don’t want to run out of batteries far away from a recharge station in the middle of winter. If driving in freezing sub-20-degree weather, you should prepare for a reduction in range of up to 40% .

8. Make use of 240V dryer plugs if renting Airbnb accommodations!

Road trips can last for weeks! That means that you’ll have to book hotels and apartments for several nights. Since many people use Airbnb to find a place to stay, it’s good to know if you’re allowed to use the 240V dryer plug to recharge your car during the night. That way, you’ll start the next day with full batteries, allowing you to get more range before you have to recharge. Make sure you have adapters ready!

Destination charging also offers charging at locations such as hotels, restaurants, shopping centers, and other popular spots across the country.

9. Plan for activities while the car is charging

Even when using a supercharger, charging the battery sufficiently to continue the road trip can take 30 minutes or more. That’s more than enough time to use the facilities around and get something to drink, but what do you do for the remaining 20 minutes? Teslas have several on-board arcade games if looking for an entertaining way to wait. If traveling with family or friends, there are various car-friendly board games that don’t need a big table for you and your road trip partners to enjoy.

If you’re looking to make the road trip even more engaging and lucky enough to be traveling along a scenic route, you could even bring your trip to the next level by bringing a couple of bikes with you and equipping your Tesla with a bike rack .

Road trip tips to maximize range:

If you’re planning to take a road trip in your Tesla, you will be driving hundreds or thousands of miles. When your car runs on batteries, you must plan ahead and do some math. You should try and make slight changes to help you get the most mileage out of a single charge. Here are a few tips on how to do that.

Minimize aerodynamic drag

You might be tempted to carry external baggage, bike racks, roof racks, or even tow a small trailer. You should be aware that extra weight and roof racks affects the vehicle’s aerodynamic profile and will lead to a significant decrease in range.

Anything you add to the car that affects the original aerodynamics will create more drag, which will deplete your batteries faster. The same thing goes for standard petrol cars. If you want to bring your bikes along or need to expand your storage with a roof rack, expect to be making more stops to recharge your batteries.

Be speed-conscious

Teslas have an incredible aerodynamic profile and some of the lowest drag coefficients in a car. For example, if you drive at 75 miles per hour, the vehicle will have to provide more power to the wheels due to increased aerodynamic drag, which will lower your maximum mileage. On the other hand, if you keep the speed around 60 mph, your car will use less power due to less aerodynamic resistance, allowing you to go further on a single charge. Again, it’s a thing of personal preference, but that going faster will require you to make more stops on the way.

Use AC and heating conservatively!

No matter if you’re going on a road trip during the summer or the winter, your AC will work hard to provide the best possible temperature inside the car. As you can imagine, that requires power, too, so you must ration the use of the AC to get more mileage out of your Tesla. If you keep it on the entire time, you will drain the batteries sooner, which means you’ll have to stop and recharge the car more frequently.

The best method is to allow the AC to cool the car down for a few minutes and shut it down until the temperature rises again. The same thing goes for heating during winter road trips. With a little practice, you will be able to maintain a steady temperature without depleting the batteries too much.

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Tesla launches “EV trip planner” tool with map of Supercharger locations

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Tesla has launched a trip planning tool that gives existing owners and prospective buyers insight into the number of charging stops and charging time needed, when traveling longer distances in a Model S, X or Model 3.

The EV trip planner is accessible from the company’s website and an extension to the trip planning tool that’s integrated into a Tesla vehicle’s navigation system.

Similar to Tesla’s existing Supercharger map, the trip planning tool overlays Supercharger stations as well as Destination Chargers onto Google Maps, while adding form fields for users of the web-based utility to input their desired starting and destination address. Depending on the type of vehicle selected, including its battery size, Tesla’s trip planner will highlight a route that factors in the most optimal charging locations to stop at, along with the amount of time needed to charge at each location, albeit a bit optimistic.

planning a trip in a tesla

Tesla trip planner suggests 3 Supercharger stops for a Model X 75D en route from SpaceX HQ to Tesla’s Fremont factory.

Using Tesla’s trip planner to create a hypothetical journey from SpaceX’s headquarters in Hawthorne, California to the company’s Fremont factory, one can see that the tool suggests Model X 75D  drivers to make three Supercharger pitstops along the 365-mile road trip.

In addition to outlining the times needed to charge at each location, the tool also gives an estimated gas savings incurred by the all-electric road trip in a Model S, X or Model 3. Tesla assumes that drivers of a gasoline car will achieve 21 MPG and pay $2.73 per gallon. The electric carmaker also assumes  free Supercharging for Model S and Model X drivers that purchased through Tesla’s referral program.  Model 3 drivers are assumed to pay a Supercharger fee of $0.20 per kilowatt hour.

Users of Tesla’s EV trip planning tool can also select from a listing of nearby destination charging locations, generally consisting of hotels and restaurants.

planning a trip in a tesla

Though the trip planning tool can be seen as a very welcomed addition for existing Tesla drivers, make no mistake that it’s as much a utility as it is a sales tool for the company.

A large “Order” button in Tesla’s ubiquitous red is prominently displayed on the tool. And for those not yet ready to order a Model S, Model X or Model 3, Tesla has conveniently added a “Schedule a Test Drive” link for curious onlookers that might be swayed to book an appointment with their local Tesla sales associate.

Teslarati provides access to all Tesla locations, including Superchargers, Destinations Chargers, Tesla Stores and Service Centers in its online map , also available on iOS and Android devices. Browse over 15,000 crowd soured recommendations for each location from actual Tesla owners worldwide!

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Android Auto: How to change or customize your view

H istorically, car infotainment center software has been clunky. In a scenario where you need access to crucial features and functions fast and with minimal distractions, these apps were often bloated with intermediary screens, disclaimers, and splash screens that made them more of an annoyance than a convenience. They're necessary if you don't want to rely on one of the best tablet car mounts or your phone to get directions while driving.

Android Auto takes some of the best ideas of other apps and presents them in a manageable package. It's a great replacement for relying on Maps on your phone for navigation or constantly fiddling with analog radio dials to find music. It's also customizable, allowing you to surface the stuff you use frequently. Here's how to get the most out of one of the best infotainment packages available.

Shuffle your apps for maximum efficiency

One of the first things to do is shift the position of app icons on the apps list so that you can quickly get to the ones you use the most, be it Google Maps, your favorite music apps, or messaging so that you can check your texts and DMs with minimal distraction.

By default, Android Auto surfaces the apps you open the most. If you want quick access to anything else, adjust the order. There isn't an option to adjust app placement in the Android Auto interface. However, it's simple to do on a connected smartphone with the Android Auto app. Here's how to change the layout of the Android Auto apps screen:

  • Unlock your phone and open the Settings app .
  • Scroll to Android Auto or search for it in the search bar.
  • Open the Android Auto settings .
  • Select the Customize Launcher option. Close
  • Choose Launcher sorting . Close

You can then select a simple alphabetical sorting, which arranges your currently installed apps from A to Z, or create a custom order. Choose Custom to drag the apps into the positions you like. If your phone is connected to your vehicle, the app order updates automatically.

Tweak the appearance of the Android Auto home screen

The Android auto home screen is designed with an emphasis on navigation. Nearly half of it is dedicated to displaying navigation assistance when it's active. The other side houses a drawer of widgets, giving you access to apps and functions without tapping through and navigating the dedicated apps screen.

An update to Android Auto unlocked the ability to choose which side each pane displays on. You can choose whether the widget drawer or the navigation should be closer to the driver. Unlike the custom sorting layout on the app screen, this can be done through the in-car Android Auto interface. Here's how:

  • From the Android Auto homescreen in your car's infotainment center, select the app screen in the lower-left corner (the square of dots icon).
  • Select the Settings app .
  • Choose Change layout .

The following screen lets you toggle between Media closer to driver or Navigation closer to driver . The Media option shifts the widget pane closer to the driver's side of the cabin, while Navigation shifts the map screen to the driver's side.

How to plan a road trip while driving a Tesla

Change your wallpaper for a custom look, or make other visual tweaks.

If you want a quick aesthetic customization to make your Android Auto interface feel a little more your own (or crave a visual upgrade), swapping out the wallpaper can make an immediate impact. You can't use a custom image as the wallpaper, but a fairly robust selection is included in the app, and you don't need your phone to change them. Here's how to switch wallpapers in the Android Auto in-car app:

  • Open the Settings app .
  • Tap Wallpaper .
  • Select the option you want from those displayed, or scroll down for additional wallpapers.

The Settings app also gives you access to other options, including switching between Day and Night mode (or swapping automatically) or whether you want to display Taskbar widgets. The latter, for instance, displays playback controls in Spotify at the bottom of the screen at all times, not only when the widget/ or app is active.

Smooth out your road trip

Android Auto is one of the best ways to get quick directions, play your favorite music, or quickly access your messages with minimal distractions from the most important task: driving safely. You can personalize it with a few handy tweaks to suit your preferences.

It doesn't stop there. Android Auto is packed with handy features beyond app access. Learn how to use Android Auto to find your parking spot in our handy guide.

Android Auto: How to change or customize your view

Musk to meet Modi in India; sources say announcement on investment likely

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Elon Musk attends Italy's PM Meloni's right-wing party's political festival Atreju, in Rome

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Aditya Kalra is the Company News Editor for Reuters in India, overseeing business coverage and reporting stories on some of the world's biggest companies. He joined Reuters in 2008 and has in recent years written stories on challenges and strategies of a wide array of companies -- from Amazon, Google and Walmart to Xiaomi, Starbucks and Reliance. He also extensively works on deeply-reported and investigative business stories.

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Elon Musk talks Tesla Secret Plan Part 2, how it is going 8 years later

Avatar for Fred Lambert

Elon Musk is back referencing his ‘Tesla Secret Master Plan Part 2’. Let’s take a look at how the execution is going 8 years later.

As a sort of public business plan, Musk has been releasing ‘Tesla Secret Plan’ blog posts to describe the automaker’s product plans.

The first was released back in 2006 and to Tesla’s credit, the company accomplished pretty much everything in that plan.

In 2016, Musk released ‘ Tesla Secret Master Plan Part 2 ‘.

Musk republished it this weekend. It has been 8 years, how is it going?

Integrate Energy Generation and Storage

The first point/product in the plan was “a smoothly integrated and beautiful solar-roof-with-battery product”:

Create a smoothly integrated and beautiful solar-roof-with-battery product that just works, empowering the individual as their own utility, and then scale that throughout the world. One ordering experience, one installation, one service contact, one phone app.

This was at a time Musk was trying to sell the merger of Tesla with SolarCity.

Tesla did build the solar roof, but it hasn’t been the success it thought it would be—at least for now.

At one point, Tesla talked about producing 1,000 solar roofs per week. Tesla never released specific data about the solar roof rollout, but we obtained some data at some point showing that the company had installed only a small fraction of that.

Tesla’s overall solar deployment, which also includes rooftop solar, has been falling over the last year as Tesla focuses on supplying its energy ecosystem to third-party installers.

Expand to Cover the Major Forms of Terrestrial Transport

The second point is about having EV models in all segments of transportation:

Today, Tesla addresses two relatively small segments of premium sedans and SUVs. With the Model 3, a future compact SUV and a new kind of pickup truck, we plan to address most of the consumer market. A lower cost vehicle than the Model 3 is unlikely to be necessary, because of the third part of the plan described below.

“A future compact SUV”. Tesla launched the Model Y, which became the best-selling vehicle in the world last year – an incredible feat.

“A new kind of pickup truck”. Tesla launched the Cybertruck recently – to mixed reviews, but it is still early in the rollout and certainly too early to say if the program is going to be a success or failure.

As for a cheaper vehicle than Model 3 being “unlikely to be necessary,” that was plain wrong. Tesla badly needs cheaper vehicles, and recently, It has invested in its next-generation vehicle platform, which is expected to support a “$25,000 car.” Although, a recent report claimed that Tesla canceled the program , which Musk denied.

Along with these vehicles, the “Master Plan Part 2” mentioned two commercial electric vehicles:

In addition to consumer vehicles, there are two other types of electric vehicle needed: heavy-duty trucks and high passenger-density urban transport. Both are in the early stages of development at Tesla and should be ready for unveiling next year. We believe the Tesla Semi will deliver a substantial reduction in the cost of cargo transport, while increasing safety and making it really fun to operate.

Tesla Semis are on the road today, but the program has also had its issues. It was delayed several years and to this day, Tesla only deployed a few electric trucks to its own fleet and a single client, PepsiCo.

The program has not been a success yet, but Tesla is not giving up on it. The automaker is currently building an expansion at its Gigafactory in Nevada to build the electric in high volume.

As for the “high passenger-density urban transport”, Tesla has never publicly commented on it 8 years later, but a video allegedly of a Tesla prototype for a people-mover for The Boring Company did leak last year.

Develop a self-driving capability that is 10X safer than manual via massive fleet learning

The last two points, autonomy and sharing, are linked together and dependant on Tesla developing self-driving technology.

This has obviously yet to happen.

Musk has often made predictions about Tesla delivering self-driving and they were all wrong. In that blog post, Musk was way more careful about talking about a timeline:

As the technology matures, all Tesla vehicles will have the hardware necessary to be fully self-driving with fail-operational capability, meaning that any given system in the car could break and your car will still drive itself safely. It is important to emphasize that refinement and validation of the software will take much longer than putting in place the cameras, radar, sonar and computing hardware.

The hardware has changed a lot over the last 8 years, and the “refinement and validation” are still ongoing.

With the recent release of FSD v12, there has been hope that Tesla could finally deliver on its promise, but there’s still significant doubt.

As for the sharing part, it is completely dependent on Tesla achieving self-driving.

Electrek’s Take

Top comment by grant.

The Model Y has been a huge success. The Model 3 has been a big success. Everything else has been a major disappointment.

I credit Elon’s first master plan blog post for greatly influencing my interest in electric vehicles.

What Tesla has accomplished since is truly incredible.

As for the second part, the fact that the Model Y came out of it is amazing by itself.

However, there was a clear emphasis on autonomy in the plan and that hasn’t been going as well. To be fair, it’s an incredibly difficult problem to solve. But there’s an argument to be made about Tesla’s putting too many eggs in the same basket on that front.

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.


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