Guide to Car Sharing Companies in Canada

August 6, 2013 Financial Tips

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If you are thinking about taking advantage of a car sharing service in Canada, you are not alone. The fact is that car sharing offers drivers in urban or major metropolitan areas a considerable number of benefits. For example, many drivers find car sharing is a far more convenient and affordable solution than owning their own car. With car sharing, you pay a membership fee to have access to vehicles at convenient pick-up and drop off locations, but you are not responsible for other vehicle-related costs or responsibilities. You simply make a call ahead of time to reserve a vehicle based on your upcoming needs, and the car will be waiting for you at the specified pick-up location. There are several car sharing companies that offer service to members throughout Canada, and you may want to consider carefully researching the options available to you. While these companies offer a similar service, there are key differences between them that you should consider.

When you are car sharing, you are not responsible for expensive automobile repairs.

When you are car sharing, you are not responsible for expensive automobile repairs.


The Location

One of the most important factors to consider when selecting a car sharing company is the location of the pickup and drop off locations. These car sharing companies are becoming more prevalent in urban areas in Canada, and many downtown locations are serviced by multiple companies. However, you will generally need to walk or ride a bike to reach the pickup and drop off locations, so it is important to consider where these locations are in relation to your home, your workplace, and other areas where you may regularly spend a considerable amount of time.

Cars are left for pick-up at a designated location.

Cars are left for pick-up at a designated location.

The Cost

In addition, you should also consider the cost of the services. Convenience is often the most important factor to consider, but the cost of the membership is a close second for many drivers. With many car sharing companies, you pay a membership fee for access to the cars, but you may also pay an additional fee based on how often you use the cars and how long you keep them. These cars have a computerized monitoring system that logs your usage, and you will receive a bill for your usage at the end of the month. This fee structure varies from company to company, and depending on how you plan to use your car sharing membership, you may determine that one company is more advantageous for you to work with than another one.

Along with convenience, cost is a key factor in making a decision towards car sharing.

Along with convenience, cost is a key factor in making a decision towards car sharing.

The Reviews

As a final point, you should consider reading reviews about the companies. With many of these companies, you are not responsible for the maintenance or repair work on the vehicles, and you may not even be responsible for filling up the gas tank. However, in order to enjoy the best results from using a car sharing service, you want to ensure that you are working with a company that does handle these tasks for you. The last thing you want is to get into a car only to find that it has an empty gas tank or is too damaged to drive.

With some companies, you  do not have to pay for gas.

With some companies, you do not have to pay for gas.

Car sharing in Canada makes sense, but some services may be far more desirable and convenient for you to use than others. If you are thinking about taking advantage of the benefits that car sharing provides, you should carefully consider shopping around and learning more about the differences between each of the companies located close to you.

 

What’s your preferred local car sharing company and why?  Leave a comment below!

 

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