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Zipcar’s Car Sharing Program is Coming to University of the Pacific

A Financially Savy Way to Do Environmental Good
by Ashley HaleJan 24, 2012

It's not cheap or easy to maintain a car on campus. There's maintenance costs, insurance, the concern that the car might be broken into or somehow damaged to worry about, all just for ability to be able to drive somewhere a few times a semester. For those who can't afford a car, the frustration is different, as they have to depend on public transportation or the kindness of strangers to get around town.

Fret no more. There is an alternative on campus. Starting this month, University of the Pacific is providing a smarter, cheaper, more sustainable form of transportation to its campus community - the Zipcar service.

Zipcar is a car-sharing service that will offer two vehicles in campus for hourly or daily reservations by students, faculty and staff. Drivers at the University of the Pacific can sign up for $25 for their first year of Zipcar membership, and then are responsible for the hourly or daily rates for each reservation they make. Typically, Zipcar rates start as low as $7 per hour, and members receive $35 of driving credit for use during their first month of membership.

"Owning a car while in school is convenient but it's also wasteful since the car is parked most of the time. I'm excited about Zipcar because it will allow me to enjoy the benefits of access to a car but in an environmentally friendly fashion," said Bryce McLaughlin. "I'll have the flexibility of owning a car at home but not paying for the excess costs all year."


Zipcar comes to campus

Two Zipcars are already on campus, waiting for students to take advantage of this money-saving, environmentally-friendly service. See the official Zipcar announcement, or visit http://www.zipcar.com/pacific for more information. more

Zipcar has programs with more than 250 universities, and the service is widely popular, as it allows eligible students as young as 18 to use the vehicles. Normally, rental cars require drivers to be at least 24 years of age. Zipcar also accepts international drivers licenses to give Pacific's international students the freedom to explore the Central Valley and California's beautiful scenery.

It's easy to reserve a car on an as-needed basis. Zipcar members can reserve the vehicles online and choose how long they need the car. The cost of gas, insurance and 180 miles of driving per day (24 hours) are included in the reservation cost. The company also maintains the vehicles. Text messages can notify the renter when reservation time is nearing completion, and extending the time of a reservation can be as easy as sending a text. All members receive a keyless entry card, called a Zipcard, when they sign up for membership, which grants them access to the vehicle during their reservation.  The keys are already inside.

Pacific will start with two Zipcar vehicles, a Ford Focus and a Toyota Prius, which have been assigned parking spaces near the Don and Karen DeRosa University Center. More cars could be added, depending on how often the vehicles are used.

It's hoped that as the service becomes more widely used, more students will leave their cars at home, thus removing excess vehicles from the roadway and also opening up parking spaces on the Stockton campus.

For more information on Zipcar visit http://www.zipcar.com/pacific.