Sunday, June 12, 2005

What Does Carsharing Cost in Europe?

Continuing from my earlier comparisons of US and Canadian companies, below is a comparison of rates for personal memberships from some of the major European carshares, converted to US dollars and distance. I've tried to keep the comparison for a similar vehicle from each service - typically an Opel Astra station wagon (Kombi), which is not necessarily the smallest, least expensive vehicle in the fleets.

I have not always been able to determine monthly or annual membership fees, so please let me know if I have not understood the offers correctly.

Cambio Start - $3.48/hour + $0.24/mile + $3/month membership fee
Cambio Activ - $2.76/hour + $0.20/mile + $12/month membership fee
Greenwheels - $3.60/hour + $0.09/mile + $12/month membership fee
ShellDrive - $3.24/hour + $0.22/mile for first 30 miles; $0.27/mile additional

Greenwheels - $6.00/hour + $0.07/mile + $6 per month membership fee

Hertz Delebilen A - $4.56/hour + $0.29/mile for first 80 miles, then $0.26/mile additional
(sorry can't identify membership fee - does anyone read Danish?)
Hertz Delebilen C - $5.67/hour + $0.59/mile for first 80 miles, then $0.56/mile additional

Carsharing Firenze - $3.12/hour + $0.68/mile for first 50 miles then $0.36/mile additional

Mobility User - $2.37/hour + $0.33/mile for first 60 miles, then $0.17/mile for all additional per trip
Mobility Member - $2.37/hour + $0.27/mile for first 60 miles, then $0.16/mile for all additional per trip
(Members pay a $987 deposit of which $790 is refundable; users pay nothing)

Streetcar (London) - $8.91/hour + $0.34/mile + no membership fee
CityCar Club low user - $8.00/hour + $0.32/mile + $9/month membership fee
CityCar Club standard - $5.40/hour + $0.32/mile + $27/month membership fee
Urbigo Individual - $9.90 for the first hour/$4.75 for each additional hour + $0.19/mile for first 30 miles, then $0.50 for all additional miles

Some comments about the European marketplace for carsharing:
• The highly fragmented German carsharing market appears to be consolidating around Cambio, ShellDrive and Greenwheels.
• One can certainly see a big difference in costs between UK and the continent, some of which must be accounted for by the cost of doing business in the UK.
• The first CSO to "go public" is CityCar Club in London which has announced intention to sell shares through the OFEX exchange.
• Companies from other industries are starting to enter carsharing: Royal Dutch Shell owns ShellDrive. Rental car companies operate carsharing in the UK, Urbigo (Avis), and Denmark, Hertz Delebilen ("Hertz Carsharing"), both of which offer vehicles in multiple cities.
• Urbigo has perhaps the most unusual rate structure: charging more for the first hour of use, and also charging an increasing amount for additional miles after the first 30 rather than a more typical lower per mile after the inittial increment.