Zipcar changed the rental market by allowing people to share their cars.
The car-sharing app gives you more flexibility in choosing a car to rent, which also makes the prices better.
If you don’t have Zipcar in your city, you can use one of these Zipcar alternatives instead.
How Car Sharing Works
Car sharing is an innovative way to get a car when you need it.
You don’t have to take public transit or own a car and pay for insurance, maintenance, and gas.
You can use an app on your phone to find a car rental close to your location, book it for as long as you need, and go from there.
Zipcar Alternatives to Check Out in 2023
Enterprise got into the car sharing game by launching a service for college students.
With an annual membership fee, students get a card that unlocks cars they rent through the app.
How Enterprise CarShare Works
After approving your membership, Enterprise sends a card that will unlock your car rental.
ou can book cars online or with the app.
When it’s your time to use the car, the card unlocks it and you’ll find the keys inside.
You also use the card to lock the doors when you’re returning your vehicle at the end of your reservation.
Enterprise CarShare vs Zipcar
The Enterprise car share program and Zipcar are similar in that they both require membership fees.
Enterprise CarShare only has vehicles on college campuses.
Zipcar is available in many major cities, like New York City across the country.
Where is Enterprise CarShare Available?
Enterprise CarShare operates in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, and Ireland.
Within those locations, the availability varies.
For example, in the US, it’s only available on college campuses.
How Much Does Enterprise CarShare Cost?
You need a membership to use Enterprise CarShare, and those fees vary depending on your location.
Car rental costs vary depending on your chosen vehicle and location as well.
They’re usually $8 an hour or $70 a day.
The price includes gas.
How to Sign Up for Enterprise CarShare
Make a profile online or through the app.
Enterprise will review your account and send you a membership card once you’re approved.
You can rent cars on the website or app and use the card to unlock the vehicles you’ve booked.
Turo is an app that lets you rent a car directly from the owner.
Owners set their own rental prices, which can make using this platform a very affordable option.
How Turo Works
Open the Turo app or go to the website and enter your area.
You’ll see a list of available cars that you can then sort by price, type, or location.
When you find the car you’d like to rent, you can book it immediately.
Since you’re renting from the car owner, you’ll have to meet them to get the keys or pay extra for the owner to deliver the car to you.
Turo vs Zipcar
With Turo, you only pay the fee when you’re using a rental car. Zipcar has a monthly membership.
However, since you’re renting from the car’s owner through Turo, you have to meet them to get the keys.
The Zipcard that unlocks Zipcar rentals is a nice convenience.
Where is Turo Available?
Turo is available in North America, the United Kingdom, and select Canadian provinces.
You can enter a location on the homepage to see the available cars in your area.
How Much Does Turo Cost?
The cost for renting through Turo depends on the type of car you’re getting.
The base price is about $25 a day, but if you rent a specialty car, it might be $200 or more.
Turning in the car late will also add extra fees to your final cost.
How to Sign Up for Turo
Create an account with Turo and then complete your profile to get approval to drive.
You need to upload a profile picture that hosts will compare to your driver’s license photo when you pick up the car.
Car2Go is a carsharing service in Europe, operating under the ShareNow umbrella.
How Car2Go Works
When ShareNow brought Car2Go into the fold, they wanted to use Bluetooth access to streamline the rental process.
They also extended rental times so you can keep a car for 30 days if you need it.
Longer times depend on what vehicle you’re renting, so you’ll have to check the limits before you book a car.
Car2Go vs Zipcar
Car2Go isn’t available in the US, while Zipcar is.
However, they allow longer rentals, which means you can keep the same car for up to 30 days.
They also don’t require membership as Zipcar does.
Where is Car2Go Available?
Though Car2Go operated in the United States initially, the company closed that branch in 2020.
They now focus their efforts on:
- The Netherlands
How Much Does Car2Go Cost?
You can rent cars by the minute, hourly with a maximum of six hours, or daily for up to 30 days.
With each option, if you go over, you’re charged by the minute.
You can see specific rates for cars when you’re booking through the app.
How to Sign Up for Car2Go
Anyone over 18 can sign up to rent a car, but Car2Go will check your driving record and make sure you don’t have any alcohol-related violations.
You’ll scan your driver’s license and upload a selfie so they know it’s you.
After about three days, you’re approved to start renting cards.
Getaround is similar to Turo but isn’t as widely available yet.
You can use the website or the app to search for cars near you, but you’ll only have luck if you live in a large metropolis.
How Getaround Works
Getaround lets you book a car online or through the app.
You can also unlock the cars with the app, so you don’t have to meet anyone to exchange keys.
There are options to rent vehicles hourly or by the day, so you have flexibility on the length of your rental.
Getaround vs Zipcar
Both Getaround and Zipcar let you unlock rentals through the app and both have hourly or daily rates.
Zipcar requires a membership but Getaround doesn’t.
However, Getaround isn’t as popular as Zipcar, so you might not find a vehicle when you need it.
Where is Getaround Available?
Getaround isn’t as widely available as other options.
It’s mostly available in bigger cities like San Francisco, New York, Detroit, and Nashville.
You can enter your location or check the map on their website to see what cars are near you.
If you can’t find any, you can zoom out or shift the map to try to look.
How Much Does Getaround Cost?
Before you can rent a car, you have to pay for Getaround to process your driving record.
After that, you can find daily rentals starting at $30.
You have to pay a booking fee and a security deposit.
You’ll get the deposit back after returning the car, but it’s something to factor into your budget on the front end.
Drivers under 25 will have to pay more per rental.
How to Sign Up for Getaround
Anyone over 19 years old can make an account on Getaround.
You can’t have any major moving violations on your record, which the app checks before you book your first rental.
Once you complete your profile and pass the driving record check, you can start reserving cars for your needs.
Gig Car Share is a small car sharing company that rents hybrid or electric cars.
While it’s only available in a few cities, it’s nice that they’re concerned about the environment and limit the types of cars they’ll rent.
How Gig Car Share Works
The company lets you rent cars through the app or, if you see one on the street, you can check and see if the windshield light is green.
Gig Car Share vs Zipcar
As with many others on this list, there is no membership fee with Gig Car Share, though there is with Zipcar.
They also exclusively rent hybrid and electric cars, while Zipcar doesn’t limit the possible vehicles.
It isn’t as widely available as Zipcar, though, so accessibility could be a problem.
Where is Gig Car Share Available?
Gig Car Share only operates in the San Francisco Bay area, Sacramento, and Seattle.
The company expanded quickly, so it’s definitely one to keep your eye on.
How Much Does Gig Car Share Cost?
Your rental expense includes everything — insurance, fuel, and parking.
Depending on the market, rates start at $0.50 per minute or just over $17 an hour.
Daily rates are closer to $100.
In some cities, like Seattle or the Bay area, you can prepay a daily rental to get a discount.
How to Sign Up for Gig Car Share
Create an account on the Gig Car Share app and take a selfie so they can verify your identity.
You’ll scan your driver’s license and credit card, and the company takes a $50 hold to confirm that the card is valid — but you’ll get it back.
Approval can take up to two days, so create your account before you need to rent a car.
HyreCar is a company that allows you to rent a car for your side hustle, such as Uber, Lyft, or delivery platforms.
Many car rentals don’t let you legally use the car to make money.
The included rental insurance won’t cover accidents while you’re working or protect any paying passengers in the car.
But HyreCar changed the game.
How Hyrecar Works
Driving passengers or making deliveries is a great way to earn extra money, but if you don’t have a car, you’re cut off from that line of income.
Since traditional rental companies prohibit people from using rentals to make money, HyreCar fills the gap.
They provide all the vehicle information you need to work for Uber or Lyft, including inspection and registration.
HyreCar vs Zipcar
HyreCar differs from every other option on this list because the purpose of the rental is to make money with your side hustle.
Zipcar is a rental service for personal needs like running errands, getting to work, and taking trips.
Where is HyreCar Available?
HyreCar is in all 50 states.
As with other car sharing platforms, availability may vary depending on your exact location and the times you’re trying to rent a car.
How Much Does HyreCar Cost?
Since people rent out their own vehicles, they can also set the prices.
This is a good thing because owners will compete with each other to try and get their cars rented out for the day.
Depending on the owner, you might not have any mileage limits on your rental so you can pick up as many orders as possible during your time.
How to Sign Up for HyreCar
When you create a HyreCar account, you’ll have to consent to a background check the first time you book a car.
They suggest that you try to book at least five cars at once to ensure you get approved for one.
You’re only charged for the rental you accept.
You’ll get the documents on that vehicle to upload to your work platform and then you can start making deliveries.
If so, you can rent it right there via the app.
You must return the car to its HomeZone, which is the general area where you rented the car.
Conclusion: What is the Best Zipcar Alternative?
Car sharing is a great way to save money and maximize your time with a vehicle.
There’s no need to own a car if it’s going to sit idle most of the day, only used to take you to and from work, errands, and out at night.
When you use a car sharing app, you have the freedom to pay for a car only when you need it.
What’s the Best Zipcar Alternative?
Turo is the best Zipcar alternative.
It’s widely available and easy to use. While you won’t have the convenience of a card to unlock vehicles, you’re only paying for the rental time — no membership required.
That makes it the best option overall.