Wednesday, April 11, 2007


The other day I signed up for Zipcar, a service that allows you to reserve cars that are located all over the city for an hour or two (up to a couple of days) if you need. Since I live downtown and rarely need a car I haven't ever considered buying one but once in awhile it would be useful to be able to hop in the the car and drive somewhere to run an errand (hello suburban Ikea's!). The rates are pretty good, about $10/hr which includes insurance and gas and there are various plans that you can sign up for depending on your driving needs. Most of the cars are located downtown and you simply go to their site to reserve one and drop it off at the same spot when you're done. A cool feature (which I'll rarely use but it's still cool) is that you can use the service in any of the cities that Zipcar services in the world, so next time I'm in London and need a car for a couple of hours problem solved.

I think this type of initiative is great, it allows people who don't have cars to get some occasional mobility and hopefully can convince some downtowners who do own cars that they could save a lot of money (and a bit of the environment) if they drove less. It's not the best solution if you need a car for longer time periods or trips but it suits most urban lifestyles quite well. I'll update at a later point about the experience once I've actually used the service.

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