Tuesday January 31, 2023

Car-sharing: A Sharing Economy Solution for Mobility

We had already written about the sustainability of the sharing economy & its business models, explaining how it works and mentioning flight-sharing.
But what about car-sharing?
Car sharing has been around since 1970s and is growing in popularity.
This article will explain what car-sharing economy really is and its benefits.
What is the meaning of car sharing?
Car sharing is simply “sharing a vehicle” and that’s exactly what car sharing is: people share vehicles. Many things can be reached quickly and easily by foot, especially in large cities. It is not worth having a car that sits in a garage all the time.
There are times when a car is beneficial, and that’s why car-sharing companies exist.
There are many car-sharing options, but the basic principle is the same: You join a car-sharing group and can then borrow a car whenever it is needed.
Practically, you only need the car you need at any given moment. You can get a small car for furniture shopping and moving houses if you are only going to be doing it for a short time.
The vehicles are usually located in easily accessible locations throughout the city so you can quickly find one near you.
Global market

How does car sharing work?
You will usually get a chip card when you join larger car-sharing companies. The card activates for the vehicle as soon as you reserve it.
The key points of the car-sharing program:
Members can quickly find out which cars are available by downloading an app for their smartphone or using the provider’s website. There is also an indication of the car’s location.
Once a person has booked the car they want, he/she will be able to go to the location and open it using the chip card. Usually, the car key is located inside the vehicle.
Some car-sharing companies have designated locations where cars can be parked or collected. Many of these locations can be moved around the city, so they are more or less flexible.
What are the best car-sharing business models?
There is a distinction between station-based providers and station-independent ones. Station-based models like Cambio (Germany), Belgium), Co-Wheels, United Kingdom, Greenwheels (The Netherlands) must be picked up at central stations such that train stations or airports at end of booked period.
Contrary to station-independent freefloat providers like Car2Go (Germany), Netherlands, the vehicles can be parked in any city parking space and used with a customer credit card without the need for a reservation. Although searching for and booking vehicles is possible via an app or website, it is generally more costly than other providers.
Peer-to-peer car-sharing, where private individuals share their cars, and ridesharing (BlaBlaCar) are other options.
Save money by sharing a car
You will be required to pay a membership fee and a deposit to join a car-sharing company.
Each car-sharing company has its own membership conditions. There are often different tariffs that you can choose from, where you pay a low annual or monthly fee.
Members who use a vehicle more frequently pay a slightly higher monthly cost and a lower price per kilometre. Occasional drivers, however, pay a flat rate per kilometre and don’t need to take out any tariffs.
Most car-sharing companies charge per kilometre and the time the car is used.
Car sharing is often more affordable than owning a car, especially in large cities and for occasional drivers. Car sharing is worth it if you drive less than 5,000 km per year.
Car-sharing has many benefits
Car-sharing helps reduce the number cars in a city. We are able to have more space in cities, less congestion, and they also reduce energy consumption and emissions.
Car sharing also has two great benefits. It is a great option for people who don’t own a car. People who live in large cities will have greater problems if they don’t have their own car.
Parking spaces are difficult to find, and it is expensive to rent them. You can also reach most destinations by train or bus. You don’t have to rely on expensive taxis if you do need a car.

Car sharing is also a good option for those who are having their car repaired. Repairs can take a while and may be delayed if the costs rise. You can expect to pay less for parts from BMW, but it will take longer to deliver.
You should not rent a car if you don’t need it every day. This will result in higher costs than renting a carsharing van.
You will be especially pleased to know that car-sharing is free for true car enthusiasts. You can also drive a BMW or Mercedes. There is a car model for everyone.

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