By Wendy Williams
A brand new person to person car sharing initiative has driven onto the scene in Spain giving the public an alternative to buying or renting a vehicle while helping the environment.
Working in a similar way to the increasingly popular ‘couchsurfing’ concept, it lets car owners make a little extra cash by lending their vehicles to people who live nearby and need a car for a few hours, days or weeks.
This means there are fewer vehicles out on the roads, allowing for lower CO2 emissions.
The service has been launched by Barcelona-based company SocialCar, which will manage the leasing of vehicles between individuals, offering an online platform for drivers and owners to rent cars.
The company, which already has 1000 drivers and 300 car owners, has also negotiated a tailor-made insurance policy with Globalis so the owners get full insurance coverage and can rent the car without worrying.
According to SocialCar the owner of a midsize car could make 60 euros a day while a person who drives an average of 80 hours a month could make an annual saving of 280 euros between insurance, parking and maintenance.
“We are enthused by the challenge of developing a business model that helps car owners and drivers address the issue of individuals having their second most valuable asset sitting idle most of the time,” explained founder Mar Alarcon.
He added: “SocialCar will be a new source of income for many citizens.”