AMPECO lauded for its implementation of payment best practices in EV charging

A significant reason for the failure of public EV charging sessions stems from the inability to accept and process payments. The ChargeX Consortium, facilitated by the Joint Office of Energy and Transportation and several national laboratories, has released a report titled ‘Best Practices for Payment Systems at Public Electric Vehicle Charging Stations’ to address the critical need for reliable payment processing in the expanding network of public EV charging stations. 

AMPECO played a key role in contributing to this report, which sheds light on the challenges associated with EV charging payments and offers proposed solutions. 

“ChargeX appreciates AMPECO’s input to the Best Practices for Payment Systems at Public Electric Vehicle Charging Stations report.” 
Kristi Moriarty
Senior Engineer, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

EV Charging Payment Methods

The report starts by identifying the main payment methods across the EV ecosystem and highlighting major integration challenges.

Various payment methods are available for customers to pay for an EV charging session, providing flexibility and backup options if a preferred method fails. According to the ChargeX report, these methods typically rely on a network connection for payment authentication and session initiation. However, payment issues can arise if a customer’s credit or debit card information is invalid or if there are hardware issues with the payment terminal. Cash payment is not commonly accepted at EV stations due to the lack of cashiers and regulatory requirements.

Major credit cards are often accepted at public EV charging stations, allowing customers to insert, swipe, or tap their cards for payment. While convenient, credit card readers are susceptible to environmental elements and vandalism, potentially leading to operational disruptions. Customers can also use charging station apps or RFID/NFC technology for wireless payment directly from their charging network accounts. Plug & Charge technology automates communication and payment between the vehicle and charging station, but issues may arise from invalid card information or inconsistent implementation of standards.

AMPECO’s payment solutions streamline transactions by integrating various payment gateways, allowing customers to make direct payments without additional fees or delays. This flexibility enhances revenue streams through customizable billing options and streamlined money flow. Additionally, AMPECO’s centralized platform offers full control over payment processes, enabling businesses to set tariffs, create user groups, restrict charger access, generate receipts, and build unique business models. Implementation of a single payment terminal for multiple chargers further maximizes efficiency, reduces costs, and ensures seamless transactions for customers. With our Plug&Charge solution (leveraging ISO15118) and adherence to the NEVI minimum rule, AMPECO leads the industry in setting high standards. This ensures the future-proof provision of dependable and secure payment solutions for EV charging.

5 challenges CPOs face in implementing payment solutions

Highlighted in the report are five challenging areas: network connectivity, integration and installation issues, robustness of hardware, maintenance and customer experience. We’ve consolidated the findings and identified the most effective solutions for enhancing payments at EV chargers across these categories. 

Network connectivity 

The report by ChargeX indicates that the payment systems at public EV charging stations face several challenges, with network connectivity being a primary concern. Spotty coverage, particularly outside urban areas and in underground garages, leads to poor network connectivity, affecting the reliability of payment transactions. In response to these challenges, the expert group at ChargeX Consortium suggests implementing various solutions. These include conducting site surveys to assess signal strength, utilizing dedicated SIM cards or multi-network SIM cards to bolster signals, and employing ethernet connections whenever feasible. Additionally, using Wi-Fi hotspots as backups can contribute to maintaining consistent network connectivity. Installing external antennas on EVSE can further enhance signal reception, thereby improving the overall reliability of payment systems. 

AMPECO’s approach to addressing connectivity challenges

AMPECO tackles network connectivity challenges by enabling interoperability and cost efficiency through the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP). AMPECO’s platform has successfully passed OCPP 1.6 Full & Security Certification, issued by Open Charge Alliance. AMPECO is listed as an approved partner by Hubject for CPO and MO roles and a trusted partner of Gireve for building direct P2P OCPI connections to enhance connectivity.

Integration, activation, and installation issues

Inadequate integration between EVSE and payment systems, coupled with improper activation and installation procedures, can result in operational disturbances. ChargeX advocates for carefully selecting compatible card readers, thoroughly pre-deployment testing, and adherence to correct activation and installation protocols to alleviate these challenges. Compliance with PCI standards and regular data security audits are imperative measures to ensure the smooth integration and functionality of payment systems.

AMPECO’s approach to addressing integration issues

AMPECO’s API delivers seamless integration within the business ecosystem, facilitating access to all platform functionalities. Aligned with industry standards, our platform ensures reliability with NTEP and CTEP compliance. Our platform allows for effortlessly incorporating crucial EV charging data into the ERP, CRM, and billing systems to craft tailored solutions that meet the business needs. AMPECO’s flexible and scalable API enables you to integrate essential EV charging data into your current systems (ERP, CRM, billing, etc) to meet your unique business needs. and  enables the development of custom features and granting API access control empowers site hosts and partners to extend business integrations with third-party systems. AMPECO API offers flexibility and scalability, complemented by structured OpenAPI documentation that expedites development processes via webhooks for real-time and automated notifications, that ensure seamless communication between applications and users.

Robustness of hardware issues

Hardware robustness is paramount in ensuring uninterrupted payment services, particularly concerning components like card readers. The reliability of these devices is at risk due to exposure to weather elements, vandalism, and operational constraints. ChargeX proposes several solutions to mitigate these risks, including the utilization of weather-resistant and ruggedized card readers that adhere to industry standards. Additionally, implementing security measures such as tamper-evident seals and surveillance cameras can further safeguard against potential threats. Conducting environmental tests and ensuring hardware shutdown under extreme conditions are also recommended practices endorsed by ChargeX to bolster hardware robustness and enhance overall system resilience. 

AMPECO’s approach to ensuring hardware robustness

AMPECO’s charging point management system is hardware-agnostic and is compatible with over 80 OCPP-compliant charger types to ensure reliability through remote charger management. 

Customer experience

Customer experience is another area of concern identified by ChargeX, as confusion among customers due to multiple payment options and unclear user interfaces can lead to dissatisfaction. Providing clear, step-by-step instructions at charging stations and standardizing payment sequences can help alleviate customer confusion. Educating customers on available payment methods and ensuring accessibility for all users are additional measures that can enhance the overall customer experience. 

AMPECO’s approach to enhancing customer experience

At AMPECO, we integrate with top payment terminals and providers for EV charging, offering a comprehensive payment solution. Our platform offers customization of the EV charging payment system with your preferred terminal and processor, simplifying the process for drivers and boosting unattended sales. Our payment terminals provide a hassle-free experience, allowing drivers to tap their card without creating profiles or downloading apps. With multi-language interfaces and automatic receipts, we cater to diverse needs and streamline documentation for EV drivers.

Maintenance issues

Maintenance of payment systems is essential for ensuring long-term reliability and usability. While experts recommend establishing maintenance plans and contracts for timely support and repairs, training staff to identify and report issues, and conducting regular inspections as critical steps in maintaining the integrity of payment systems, ChargeX also emphasizes the importance of proactive measures like maintaining a spare parts inventory to address any technical issues promptly and ensuring timely maintenance.

AMPECO’s approach to addressing management issues

With remote management capabilities, AMPECO’s platform allows on-time control and monitoring of the chargers, remotely starting and stopping charging sessions, unlocking cables, and updating firmware. Automated fault-recovery algorithms and real-time issue detection minimize downtime and maintenance costs, ensuring network reliability as you scale. 

In conclusion

AMPECO is committed to employing best practices in payment reliability for public EV charging, both in the US and globally. Through our collaboration with industry leaders and adherence to the NEVI minimum rule, NTEP and CTEP, we ensure dependable and secure payment solutions. 

Our comprehensive payment solution allows for customization, enabling businesses to streamline transactions, boost revenue, and provide a hassle-free experience for EV drivers. Additionally, our platform addresses network connectivity challenges by enabling interoperability and cost efficiency through OCPI integration and partnerships with leading industry players like Hubject and Gireve. With robust hardware compatibility, seamless integration through our API, and remote management capabilities, AMPECO ensures the reliability and usability of payment systems for EV charging. Through the adoption of these best practices, our goal is to enhance the overall EV charging experience and foster the widespread adoption of electric vehicles.

Contact AMPECO today to explore how our comprehensive payment solution can help you grow your EV charging business and provide a seamless payment experience for your customers. 


Ivelina Kadiri

Policy Compliance Manager

About the author

Ivelina is a trend-seeking policy compliance manager who skillfully navigates complex regulatory landscapes and bridges the gap between sustainable transportation goals and actionable implementation.