Charging in Bojnurd, Iran

Invitation and setting up charging in Bojnurd

A TV station invited us to come to Bojnurd. They wanted to do an interview with us. That’s at least what we understood. Again, it all came a bit different.

About 7 boys at the age of 16 to 18 welcomed us at the hotel they booked for us. One of them was Mehran (who, with his neat briefcase, looked much older), our initial contact in Bojnourd. After a rest in the hotel the group of boys picked us up in the evening to bring us to a building complex where some of them lived. There was a 4-pin CEE-32 outlet in front in the house entrance of one of the houses (which was awesome!). We (and them) took pictures and left the car to charge. A pleasant walk through the city with the whole crowed followed.

An evening with a crowed of interested boys and a helpful girl

There was also one girl coming with us. She was supposed to keep me company (I guess they felt uncomfortable with me being the only female in the group or thought I would feel uncomfortable with boys only. But, probably contrary to them, I am used to this since I am little). We spent the afternoon walking around the city of Bojnurd and Benedikt arranged to get a haircut (which we deemed highly necessary, considering our upcoming border transits first to Turkmenistan and later to Uzbekistan — none of them is known to be easy and a good appearance might simplify things).

When the sun was setting, me and the girl returned to the houses, where the Tesla was waiting. A dinner to break the fast (everyone seemed to be strict Muslim, following Ramadan) with the neighbors was set up outside of the building (right behind the Tesla). It was a fun evening with the entire neighborhood community. Unfortunately, the charging of the car didn’t work out as expected. Probably the connection wasn’t strong enough for 32 amperes. The charging process stopped after only a few kWh charged. Since we didn’t want to make a big hassle, we charged the rest of the electricity that we needed at a Schuko in the parking garage of our hotel.

Visting an Iranian middle school and giving an “interview”

The next morning Mehran picked us up to bring us to his old school. We only noticed then that he just recently graduated from school and is doing the interview with us as a student project. Since he was really attached to his former school and teachers, we did the interview there. The school (only for boys) was nice, even though I couldn’t really get the concept of parting boys from girls. We were guided through the rooms and I felt a bit like Angelina Jolie, doing some charity work. Everyone wanted to show us something (like a tiny baby fetus in a glass in the science lab) and tell a story. I was surprised to hear that 30% of the lessons the boys have are religious class in that school. What an impact that must have on the little boys.

After the walk through the school, we had the interview with Mehran. We could feel the impact the religious lessons had on him… From his point of view, you can clearly see why a head scarf is great and necessary on women or that the fasting during Ramadan makes people commit less crime or lies. Mehran will have a fruitful journalist career in the state-controlled media.

Meeting Mohsen, initiator of the facebook group “Overland in Iran”

We know Iran as always offering us something of both extremes. It felt like almost no surprise that after having spent the morning Lost In Translation (and inbetween cultures), we met Mohsen for an evening tea in his home. He is curious about the world and travelers from different countries and, in order to meet even more travelers, initiated the facebook group “Overland in Iran” that I joined shortly after entering Iran. We had a wonderful and deep conversation with him and it felt like we found a friend in Bojnurd.



 outlet/socket  Volt  Ampere  kW  kWh
4 poles CEE-32 230 3*32 amperes 22kW 20kWh
Schuko 220 6 amperes 2kW 40kWh

Charging in Isfahan, Iran

Besides the hotel offers in Kashan (see this post), we received many, many more messages after our ask for three-phase electricity on Instagram. Most people who messaged us either told us what touristic places to visit or they asked when they can see us.

In fact, our number 1 problem always is, how to charge the car. After that we need to find a place to sleep and eat. Sometimes the order and priority is different ;-). Only after those three problems (and sometimes additional ones like laundry, grocery shopping and so on) are solved, we start thinking about what sights to see or whom to meet.

Soheil in Isfahan was the only one who clearly understood what our problem is (the need for a place to charge the Tesla). He offered us three-phase electricity in his father’s factory.

Charging #1

Of course, we didn’t know what to expect when we drove to the industrial town of Isfahan. But the surprises couldn’t have been bigger. We were welcomed by Soheil, his mother and his sister, Mehrnoush, as well as one of his friends, Ali. Soheil and Ali were very curious about the car. Benedikt spend the afternoon talking to them and explaining. I spend the same time with Mehrnoush and her mom, wonderful people, who it was so great talking to. We all share the same interest in mountaineering. Especially the dad of the family, who unfortunately died last fall and who we would have loved to meet, was a great climber and hiker. He started in the 1980s a company for everything climbers need out of metal (carabiners, pitons, crampons, ice picks…) and other metal products (tea pots).


While we were chatting, and visiting the factory, the Tesla was charging on a stable three-phase outlet (Montenegro style) with 32 amperes and 22 kW.

It was really a great afternoon we spend together with the Samavatis. We just couldn’t refuse an invitation from the family to stay at their place overnight and have dinner together. This kind of hospitality is just amazing and we had a wonderful time at their apartment.

Meeting our fans

I was sick the third day in Isfahan (probably eat/drank something wrong). Due to that Benedikt had to go to a meeting of our “fans” by himself. We set up this meeting since many people waned to meet us (and see the car). We didn’t want them all at our hotel. About 25 to 30 people showed up for this meeting. Like any Tesla-newbie Benedikt could easily entertain them with the soundless car, suspension control, the car key, frunk and so on.

Charging #2

Before we left we went another time to Soheil and his family. Again, we had a great time together and the car charged up to 98%. This time, the cable/fuse didn’t really take the 32 amperes though. After about 1 hour charging, a fuse blew and the charging stopped. We only noticed at that point that the fuse was made for 25 amperes and the outlet for 16 amperes. It worked the first time to push 32 amperes through them, but after the fuse-blow we continued charging only with 20 amperes (on all three phases).





 outlet/socket  Volt  Ampere  kW  kWh
 Montenegro outlet  220 volt  3*32 amperes  22 kW  about 50
 Montenegro outlet  220 volt  3*20 amperes  16 kW  about 40