My first EV trip is going to be a big one. I am planning on picking up my Model Y in Nova Scotia and making my way across Canada some 5,500+ km back home to Vancouver. Despite this being out of the norm for Tesla delivery teams, the big issue is picking up the vehicle in the Maritimes. My Tesla Halifax pickup plan is proving to be challenging for a few reasons. Here’s why.
There is No Tesla Halifax Service Centre
Since there is no Tesla Halifax service centre or showroom (or any in the Maritimes), all Tesla’s bound for the East Coast are sent to Quebec City. This is as far east as Tesla goes in Canada. Now, this doesn’t mean you can not buy a Tesla if you live in the Maritimes. It just means that the vehicles are put on delivery trucks and sent east from Quebec City.
This by no means is a showstopper for my plan. It is, however, a fat deterrent.
After struggling to get anywhere with Tesla on my request to pick up out of province, I finally got a phone call from the delivery team in Quebec City. The gentlemen I spoke with was great and essentially let me know that, despite no Tesla Halifax presence, picking up in Nova Scotia wouldn’t be a problem. It would, however, be inconvenient.
Since the cars are loaded onto a truck and delivered by a third-party company, I was told that once it leaves Tesla’s hands, there’s no guarantee on when it will be delivered. The best estimate he could give me was within one to two weeks. This, understandably, makes it tricky when trying to coordinate a cross country trip. On top of that, we are still in the middle of a pandemic.
Nova Scotia Isn’t Open for Tourism Yet
Besides there being no Tesla Halfiax footprint, another factor at play is Nova Scotia, and the rest of the Maritime provinces, still require those visiting from Quebec west to self isolate for 14 days. This isn’t anything new and I assume that this will be lifted by September. Despite capitalizing on an awesome Aeroplan promotion and booking a one-way flight to Sydney, Nova Scotia, there is no guarantee the restrictions will be lifted by then.
This, coupled with the fact that much of the areas shops and restaurants are closed because of the pandemic, made me shift my plans. It may seem petty but if Baddeck Lobster Suppers, a spot fell in love with while spending three days on Cape Breton Island, is closed for the season, then what’s the point? ?
Quebec City Bound!
While talking with the Quebec City delivery associate I asked about a backup plan. If Nova Scotia is not open by September, could I collect the vehicle in Quebec City? To my pleasent suprise, this was not only an option, but a prefered one as far as the associate was concerned.
He said not only would I get my car on time, but I would also get the “full pickup experience,” something I would miss out on with a car coming off a delivery truck. I’m not exactly sure what this means but assume it’s the ability to ask questions about the car in person.
On top of that, I would be able to get temporary plates right from the dealership and could leave from there. In Nova Scotia, I would have to go direct to a register and collect. This would be another level to coordinate on top of uncertain delivery date/time. The one good thing about the Nova Scotia permit though is that it is valid for 30-days. This would give me plenty of time to get home. Quebec’s temporary permit, on the other hand, is only valid for 10-days. When I mentioned this to the associate he said this would not be a problem and he would issue 3 x 10-day permits.
Coast to Coast?
With all the issues and uncertainty with picking up in Nova Scotia, I have decided to forgo that plan and collect the car in Quebec City. Not only will it be easier, but it will also be cheaper as I won’t have to drive as far or spend an uncertain amount of time in a hotel waiting for my car.
At first, though, I was down about missing out on the Maritime visit and drive. It is an area I truly love and was looking forward to my return. I also had it in my head that I would drive across the country coast-to-coast.
Then it dawned on me. I can still drive coast-to-coast without leaving Quebec!
The Gaspé Peninsula has long been on my travel list. My plan was to drive around it on my way back from the east coast. Even with my new pickup location, I can still do this drive.
So the new (new) plan is pick up in Quebec City and then head east along the St. Lawrence until it turns into the Atlantic Ocean. After touring the area, I will turn around and head home, coast to coast.
Now how I will do this is still TBD. There’s not a lot of Tesla supercharger stations in the area so this added detour will require some planning and some spare parts. Stay tuned on that!
Until then, if anyone has made this drive in an EV, I would love to hear your tips and recommendations. Let me know in the comments below!