Operators of new electric vehicle (EV) charging points that are rapid and higher powered must ensure drivers are offered pay as you go debit or credit card payment options by 2020.
The government also expects industry to develop a roaming solution across the charging network, allowing drivers to use any public charge point through a single payment method without the need for multiple smartphone apps or membership cards.
It is working with industry to make charge point data freely available to enable drivers to easily locate and access the charging points.
Future of Mobility Minister Michael Ellis said: “The government’s vision is for the UK to have one of the best electric vehicle charging networks in the world but we know the variety of payment methods at the moment is a source of frustration for drivers.
“It is crucial there are easy payment methods available to improve electric vehicle drivers’ experiences and give drivers choice. This will help even more people enjoy the benefits electric vehicles bring and speed up our journey to a zero-emission future.”
The government added it would intervene “to ensure a good deal for consumers” if the market is too slow to deliver improvements across the entire network.
The latest announcement comes as BP Chargemaster has committed to introducing card payment on all new 50KW and 150kW chargers from today as well as retrofitting existing UK-made rapid chargers with the technology over the next 12 months.
David Newton, CEO at BP Chargemaster, said: “As the operator of the UK’s largest public charging network, including the greatest number of rapid chargers, we support the government’s vision for all new rapid and ultra-fast chargers to support contactless bank card payment.”