Car Sharing Gains Popularity

By Paula Ebben, WBZ-TV
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BOSTON (CBS) – With gas prices on the rise, some people are looking to cut the costs of getting around. They’re saying goodbye to car ownership, and hello to car sharing.

Matty Griffiths doesn’t own a car, but gets one when he needs to visit family, or do errands for work. He uses ZipCar.

Services like ZipCar are growing fast. Drivers get a vehicle by the hour, or by the day, with gas and insurance included.

“A typical Zipster is looking for cost savings,” said Ellice Preze, a company spokeswoman. “They’re looking for simplicity, convenience, and we provide all those things with gas, insurance, and a reserved parking space being included.”

Those parking spots evolve from partnerships like the one they have in Brookline, a community where car sharing makes sense. It is near public transportation and busy commercial areas.

“Car sharing is a great option for those who bike, walk, take public transportation and sometimes they need a car,” said Chris Hamilton, a municipal official from Arlington Virginia.

Other companies are now trying to compete with ZipCar. Hertz is adding a service called, “On Demand.” Daimler’s “Car2Go” is adding more cities as well.

There is also a growing market of peer to peer car sharing. Startups like “Relay Rides” and “Getaround” let drivers rent from neighbors.

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