Car Clubs and Services and Car Sharing
A third of UK households own two or more cars or vans, and car numbers are increasing, so there’s a growing need to solve our traffic congestion problems without adding to these numbers. Car clubs and car-sharing schemes could provide part of the solution.
Car Clubs and on-line car sharing services
This is a relatively new but growing service offered predominantly on-line and via sharing apps. Car clubs work by giving members access to a car on a short-term rental basis and charging by the hour or the day.
You can book a car online or by phone and then unlock it from a designated bay in your local neighbourhood. You then use the car to make your journey and leave it in another bay when you reach your destination. It can then be used by another user to make their journey.
This saves you the costs of purchase and maintenance as well as any parking charges when you reach your destination.
An added advantage is that the cars tend to be smaller, newer and better maintained. This means they emit less CO2, making them a greener alternative.
Car-sharing, also called lift-sharing, or car-pooling, is when two or more people share a car on a journey and travel together. This is quite popular for commuting to work and larger companies will often have intranet sites to encourage employees to ‘car-share’.
Car-sharing can be based around one owner taking a number of people together or several owners taking it in turns to drive everyone else. It means that you can benefit from the convenience of the car, whilst reducing the costs and the number of one-person cars on the road, which helps reduce pollution and congestion.
It’s down to the car-sharers to decide how to pay for the journey, but it’s a good idea to share the cost of petrol. Sort this out before you start and stick to your agreement. Drivers shouldn’t make a profit from car-sharing or it could invalidate their insurance or tax.
Consider setting up a car-sharing group for your company, community or organisation.
If you are considering going carless but you are worried about losing the convenience of a car, car-sharing and car-clubs can help you make the change.