Car-Lite Living

The automobile has long been considered as much a part of American life as stars and stripes, apple pie, and well, freedom. But times are changing. Traffic is getting worse, gas prices are climbing, and a whole new trend is sweeping the nation: families are opting for one car instead of two, and some folks are even doing away with it altogether.

And not just in big cities with great subway systems. Nope, we’re talking right here in Texas. With car sharing programs, it’s possible to have your cake and eat it too! Car-lite living means taking the bus and train, riding a bicycle, and even walking for most day-to-day activities; on days when a car is necessary, using a service for short term rental takes the place of car ownership. These three services are helping Austin area residents to live car-lite…

Car2Go

With Car2Go, all it takes is a low, one-time membership fee of $35 and you’re set to roll. Armed with a (newly updated) fleet of adorable little Smart Cars, Car2Go is perfect for a quick jaunt across town. Whether you’re up for a quick shopping trip or a drive out to the hill country or to Lake Travis, car2go is just what it sounds like – a car to go. Rates are $.35 a minute plus tax, or $12.99 plus tax per hour and one day (up to 24 hours) is no more than $65.99 plus tax. Warning- in order for this price to apply, the same car must be used all day!

Zipcar

Zipcar offers more than 30 makes and models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day to residents and businesses looking for an alternative to the high costs and hassles of owning a car.  Zipcar members pay only for the time they actually use the vehicle and have no responsibility for additional costs and hassles associates with car ownership, including gas, registration, insurance, maintenance and car payments.

Car sharing works! Zipcar members report saving an average of $600 per month compared to owning a car. Members of Zipcar and car sharing programs report a 46% increase in public transit trips, a 10% increase in bicycling trips and a 26% increase in walking trips.

Rates in Austin range from $7.75/hr to $13.25/hr and $63/day to $92day. All reservations include gas and insurance.  As a proud partner, Zipcar is offering supporters of Commute Solutions a special Zipcar deal!  You can join for 50% off your first year and they will also set you up with a $55 in free driving to get you started.  Thanks Zipcar!

To find vehicles near you go to zipcar.com/find-cars. For more information on car sharing in Austin visit www. zipcar.com/commutesolutions.

Hertz

Connect by Hertz is a car sharing program by rental giant Hertz, designed to make rental easier than ever. Members can book vehicles online or via phone for an hour, a day or up to a week. As a member, you get 24-hour access to vehicles, so you can connect to the people and places that matter.

Enterprise CarShare

Enterprise Rent-A-Car is America’s car rental company dating back to 1957, and started car sharing as a natural extension of its rental program and longtime focus on customized local service. Enterprise CarShare uses technology and an award-winning service record to deliver speed, efficiency and economy to people who need a car at a moment’s notice.

They build customized car sharing programs for several audiences, including business, college and government. Our individual car sharing programs enable everyone to share a variety of cars, and complements alternative forms of transportation like carpooling, biking or using mass transit. Reserve hourly car rentals including hybrids, SUVs, pickup trucks or fuel-efficient vehicles for everything from personal errands to seeing family.

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