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Old 05-08-2013, 02:27 PM
 
377 posts, read 533,475 times
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I have just started using zip car downtown to buy things from Craigslist. I notice most of the cars in the loop are always available the whole day. Some appear to have no reservations for days. For the meager $12 they collect from me, how are they covering their costs? Is this a subsidized program?
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Old 05-08-2013, 02:32 PM
 
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Car Sharing, an alternative to car rental and car ownership – Zipcar
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Old 05-08-2013, 02:45 PM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
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I think they make most of their money on weekends.
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Old 05-08-2013, 02:49 PM
 
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No, it is not subsidized in an governmental sense. The did things the "old fashioned way" of just lossing millions of dollars -- Zipcar loss narrows; company trims full-year view - MarketWatch

THEN the top brass figured out the "new fashioned way" of cashing out and bailing and leaving the "business" to the very very unhip model of the old schools car rental companies which they are selling out to -- Will Avis Wreck Zipcar? -- New York Magazine
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Old 05-08-2013, 04:41 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oakparkdude View Post
I think they make most of their money on weekends.
I would imagine they also make more out in the neighborhoods where more people live. They've been expanding pretty rapidly since Avis took over, so perhaps they got a bit overzealous with their inventory in the Loop. That actually seems like just about the last place anyone would need a zip car, since it's the one place in the city with easy and quick public transportation to just about anywhere.
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Old 05-08-2013, 06:59 PM
 
644 posts, read 1,098,993 times
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I've never really understood why they have so many cars in the Loop, and so few in the neighborhoods. If you take a look at the available cars on any Saturday or Sunday, the cars in the neighborhoods are all gone, and there are all kinds of them available in the Loop.

They do rent cars mostly on weekends and holidays, but that's also why they charge more on those days than they do doing the week.
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Old 05-08-2013, 07:31 PM
 
190 posts, read 290,229 times
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the problem with zipcar, at least to me, is that you can't pick a car up from one location and drop it off at another.
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Old 05-08-2013, 11:24 PM
 
644 posts, read 1,098,993 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rubbersoul89 View Post
the problem with zipcar, at least to me, is that you can't pick a car up from one location and drop it off at another.
If you're in a situation where you want to do that, at least in Chicago, that's a good sign that a cab is probably a better idea. Depending on what kind of trip you're making, a cab can be significantly cheaper. Zipcar is best for trips where you're going somewhere for a short amount of time and returning. For instance, if you want to go to dinner at some place where it would take you 15 minutes to drive there but an hour by transit, then Zipcar is a good bet.

The main reason I love Zipcar is because I'm not yet 25 years old, and can't rent a car at a traditional place without significant hurdles or fees. But I really doubt that offering rentals to the 18-24 group really makes Zipcar any money...
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Old 05-08-2013, 11:46 PM
 
2,918 posts, read 3,867,894 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JBVirtuoso View Post
The main reason I love Zipcar is because I'm not yet 25 years old, and can't rent a car at a traditional place without significant hurdles or fees. But I really doubt that offering rentals to the 18-24 group really makes Zipcar any money...
They have locations on college campuses (including some well outside of urban areas) where that age group is surely the majority of their business.
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Old 05-09-2013, 03:15 PM
 
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I use Zipcars in the Loop when I need to go to job site during the day, but don't want to pay for Loop parking.
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