While the latest hot topic of the automobile industry might be self-driving cars,
a recent poll
states that 80% of Americans will always want the option of driving on their own. However, when you live in major cities owning a car can seem more of a hassle than a privilege; traffic, insurance, car payments, and gas prices prove as strong deterrants. So, what’s a young urbanite to do?
On the spectrum between Uber and owning a car flat out are companies who are directly involved in ‘car-sharing’. In essence, car sharing is basically renting a car, but on a short-term basis with flat rates and supposedly less stress. With a bunch of programs available across most major US cities and even multiple countries, the appeal is hard to miss. We’ve compiled a few major names in the car-sharing space for you, take a look:
Zipcar (NASDAQ: CAR)
Owned by Avis Budget Group, the only PLC company on this list, and one of the biggest car rental groups in a very consolidated industry. Zipcar markets itself as “the leading
network” and in terms of size, they wouldn’t be too far off.
Zipcar profits off of Avis’ international influences and operates in 46 US states (including Hawaii), the Virgin Islands, Canada, Austria, France, Germany, Spain, UK and Turkey. So if you were ever interested in taking some international roadtrips, Zipcar might be the first stop for you.
The price? It’s a layered process. There’s a application fee for all new members, and then membership fees and actual driving rates, making it one of the more pricier options on this list. Every car rental includes gas, insurance, and 180 free miles per day, but after that it’s a fixed rate by hourly or daily charges. They offer cars ranging from coups and sedans to SUV’s, vans, and hybrid cars.