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Booking a plane ticket to a new city is, for the most part, fairly easy. It's the arriving in that city which can be a headache, figuring out how best to explore and get around. Fret no more, because that's all RideScout's specialty.
This newish mobile app, available for both Apple and Android devices, helps travelers get from point A to point B faster and smarter using some GPS technology and an easy-to-use interface. RideScout gathers together all the ground transportation in the area and presents it as simply as possible, including directions, estimated cost, and arrival times, ensuring that you get where you need to go by cab, public transport, car-sharing, or biking.
Free Stuff / iPhone Travel Apps / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Lyft / Cars / Travel Apps / → All Tags
When done correctly, those newfangled ride share programs can be pretty darn convenient, and even better they're often a great alternative—as in cheaper—than a taxi or town car. Options like Sidecar and Uber are just a couple of examples participating in this model, and there’s also Lyft. Speaking of Lyft, they just announced a significant expansion of their offerings to a slew of new cities.
Lyft works just like a lot of the other peer-to-peer ride programs in that there’s an app that connects drivers around you to take you where you need to be. They try to have a little fun with things as well, so be sure to remember to sit up front when you get in your ride and maybe even fist bump the driver.
FlightCar / Rental Cars / Cars / Road Trips / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Driving / Airports / LAX / SFO / BOS / → All Tags
We’ve talked about FlightCar before, and in case you don’t remember—we will fill you in. Basically it’s a car sharing program over at the long-term rental car parking lot. When you drop your car off it’s paired up with someone looking for a car. The renter gets a better deal by borrowing your car, and you get a better deal because you make some money instead of paying for parking. It’s all licensed, insured, and what not, as they realize that there needs to be some guarantees and promises to get everyone comfortable with things.
Right now FlightCar is an option at airports in Boston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, but what we wanted to share is how they’re changing things up for business travelers. The company isn’t just interested in the leisure market, as they’re now trying to get road warriors interested in their services.
FlightCar / Rental Cars / Cars / Road Trips / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Driving / Airports / LAX / → All Tags
Those looking to head out of town have a new option when it comes to the long-term parking lot, as FlightCar has recently started up shop over at Los Angeles International Airport. In case you don’t remember the deal with FlightCar—basically you rent out your car to others instead of just leaving the car in the parking lot. Someone gets the wheels they need, you don’t have to pay for parking, and you even make a little money on the deal.
The peer-to-peer car sharing system hasn’t really gone gangbusters as of yet, but the head honcho at FlightCar—he’s 19 years old—reports that the company has roughly 3,700 listings for the not really rental cars. We guess we would be a little concerned letting someone else take our wheels out for a spin, but at the same time the insurance, the liability, and other guarantees do provide some kind of warm and fuzzy feeling. Overall we think the idea is kind of awesome, and yet again we're jealous that we didn't think of this first.
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As far as rental car companies are concerned there’s plenty of copycat strategies when it comes to keeping up with the competition. The latest news comes from Hertz, as it looks like the company is totally taking a page from the car sharing industry in order to breathe a little extra life into their usual business model.
Through the Hertz 24/7 service they’re looking to make plenty of cars available to plenty of people exactly when they need them. Right now there’s around 35,000 cars available for the taking at any given time, but they’re getting ready for a decent sized expansion. Once 2016 rolls around they might just be pushing roughly 500,000 ready-to-go vehicles worldwide, as these cars are prepared and equipped for anytime access.
RelayRides / Rental Cars / Cars / Road Trips / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Driving / → All Tags
We’ve mentioned various bits and pieces of car sharing programs in the past, but if there’s one that’s leading the pack it might just be RelayRides. The basic premise behind these programs is that you can offer up your car to someone else when you’re not using it. Feel free to take the neighbor’s car for a spin if you’ve been eyeing it in the driveway, and he or she can do the same with your car when you’re away for the weekend. RelayRides takes care of insurance and all the other boring details, so you just put the pedal to the metal and go.
So far RelayRides has cars in almost 1,500 different cities across all 50 states, but they’re eager to expand even further. Now they’re bringing their car sharing idea to social media, as they’re getting ready to do the Facebook integration thing.
FlightCar / Rental Cars / Cars / Road Trips / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Driving / → All Tags
It’s been a few months since we introduced you to the newest idea in airport parking and rental cars—FlightCar. Just in case you need a brief refresher, basically FlightCar offers the opportunity for those parking at the airport to rent out their cars while they’re not using them. Seems like a clever idea if you ask us, and now it looks like the first cars are available to rent.
Up first is San Francisco International Airport, and they’ve got room for those looking to rent out their cars and for those looking to rent cars. Rates are supposed to be competitive with what’s offered from the big boys, though FlightCar is so far claiming they'll have 50% cheaper rates than the usual rental car companies. Free insurance, free GPS, and pick-up right from the terminal look to set FlightCar apart from the usual suspects in the rental car garage.
Rental Cars / Cars / Avis / Zip Car / Car Sharing / → All Tags
At this point you probably have heard about Zipcar. They’re the car sharing business where you can get a car where and when you need it, charged by the hour, and they take care of all the tricky stuff like insurance, parking, and maintenance. In recent years Zipcar has enjoyed plenty of positive attention from travelers and those just looking to skip town for the weekend, and apparently the big rental car giants were listening.
Once such rental car company is Avis, as they just threw done almost $500 million to gobble up Zipcar along with its cars, ideas, and image. The changes and integration will probably be slow to start, so no need to be nervous that your beloved Zipcar will be changing for the worse.
FlightCar / Rental Cars / Cars / Road Trips / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Driving / → All Tags
There are all kinds of rental car and car sharing schemes, but the latest idea to hit the marketplace just may be the best one we’ve heard yet. It all takes place at the airport, where there is an abundance of two types of car-driving travelers: those who don’t currently need their cars (long-term parkers) and those who need to pick up a car. FlightCar hopes to link these two sets of people in driving happiness.
Basically what you’ll be able to do with FlightCar is rent out your car while you’re not using it. That keeps your car happy since it gets to drive around and keep busy—cars have feelings too—and it’ll keep you happy since you’ll be earning cash instead of shelling out bucks for the parking garage.
Rental Cars / Cars / Driving / Car Sharing / Wheelz / → All Tags
We’ve mentioned the new trend of peer-to-peer car rental before, as companies look to rent out your own car to other drivers instead of relying on gobbling up oodles and oodles of their own PT Cruisers and related rental relics. It looks like Wheelz is one of the latest rental car shares to hit the scene, and they just might be the big thing. It doesn’t hurt things either that they just got quite a little cash infusion from the rental car pioneers over at ZipCar.
Wheelz does its thing by hooking up people who need some wheels with folks who aren’t using their wheels. That means you might just be taking out your neighbor’s car for a spin. The premise is simple, and they even have a cute little animation to explain things to you. Basically Wheelz installs a little bit of travel technology within your car—free of charge—and then you’re ready to rent it out.
Rentals are covered with 24/7 tech support and there’s also a million bucks in insurance coverage—just in case. The Wheelz app can help you pinpoint a car, book it, and pick it up. Rates start around $50 or $60 per day depending on what you choose, so it's pretty darn affordable.
Car Sharing / Cars / Rental Cars / Miami Travel / Herz On Demand / Hertz / → All Tags
There’s no longer the need to walk from Fontainebleau all the way down to Shake Shack—trust us, it’s far—as car sharing is now making its way to South Beach. Sure there are plenty of two-wheeled options available in Miami, but sometimes you just need to put the pedal to the metal. After all, cruising down Collins isn’t quite the same with streamers coming out of the handlebars.
There’s no cutesy name or gimmick associated with the city’s new program, as they’re simply partnering with Hertz to bring the car share scheme to the masses. Thanks to Hertz on Demand, Miami Beach will now be the first city—at least by their math—to offer up a city-sponsored car sharing system in the Sunshine State. Things officially get underway starting today, and there’s even some kind of ribbon cutting ceremony at the Miami Beach City Hall Garage to celebrate.
Car Sharing / Cars / Rental Cars / Autolib / Paris Travel / Green Travel / Velib / → All Tags
Back in October we heard that bike-sharing was turning into car-sharing thanks to the Velib spin-off—Autolib. Initially the rental cars were part of a test run, but the program has been pretty popular and now it’s time to go all-in.
The plan is to eventually add more than 3,000 emission-free cars to the streets of Paris, but for now new cars will be added each and every week. The system works just like the bikes—with a slight increase in cost—and you can pick your car up in one location and drop it off in another. The cars are all battery powered, but the Bluecar electric vehicles should be able to spin around for at least 150 miles before requiring another fill up of electricity.