Wheels are much harder to come by at school than at home. Whether you were lucky enough to drive your parents’ extra car or had your own, chances are you weren’t allowed or it was too expensive to bring to school with you. Even if the car is fully paid off, extra gas money, insurance and costly — even nightmarish — parking can make owning a car on campus way more of a hassle than it’s worth.
Luckily, we have options. There are ways to experience car freedom on your own terms, whether it’s road tripping with your own music or making a quick run to Target.
Zipcar, the nation’s largest car-sharing network on college campuses, offers Zipcar for Universities for college students on more than 600 campuses. You only need to be 18 (with a valid driver’s license, of course) to join and it’s actually affordable.
Students sign up themselves for wheels when you need them without the hassle of parking fees (or, let’s be real, tickets!), gas or insurance costs. Pick up and return on or close-by to campus in a designated parking spot — no more circling the block stressing to find parking.
Why Zipcar Makes Sense for College Students
1. No Joke, It’s Budget Friendly
Flexible memberships for students start at $15 for the first year (and go up to $25 the following year, so still reasonable). Prices vary on location, but the average day rate is only $70 and the average 3-hour trip is about $30 — and that’s before you split the cost with your roommates.
There’s even an estimated cost calculator based on what you need, whether it’s a grocery run or a weekend away. Each reservation includes 180 miles, gas, insurance, parking and maintenance!
2. Join and Reserve in a Snap
As long as you’re 18 you can join online with a valid driver’s license and credit card. They validate your license, and within a week your Zipcard will arrive in the mail. Reserve a car from your phone and your personal Zipcard unlocks the car at pick-up.
3. Own Your Experience
Ride-sharing has its place — you’re thinking ahead if you drink on a night out with friends or need to grab a ride to the airport.
However, the best memories are made on road trips! Life is more fun when you’re behind the wheels with friends and can go where you want, when you want.
4. Cleaner Environment
Car sharing in general helps ease parking challenges and congestion around campus. And, it lowers your CO2 footprint: each Zipcar saves 219 gallons per oil!
Great news for back to school — Zipcar is offering a deal to any new member that signs up. Join today and use the code “StudyBreak” when signing up for $15 in driving credit (that’s half of a 3-hour shopping trip on them!). When you’re ready for a drive, choose a Zipcar with a location and time convenient to you. Keep the car clean, leave at least 1/4 of a tank upon return (gas is on Zipcar!), report any issues immediately and return on time. Talk about a great study break!