Michelle Zips

You would think not owning a car would make life a lot more difficult. How would you pick your friend up from the airport? How would you haul your Christmas tree or Bar Mitzvah gifts home? How would you take your three hour late-night cruise looking for a White Castle? Well, if Michelle wanted to, she could do all three of these things, and do them without owning a car.
Michelle is part of the carshare program, Zipcar.

Our host and Zipcar member Michelle

Our host and Zipcar member Michelle

Car-sharing is an alternative to owning a vehicle. Members pay a monthly or annual fee to have access to a car any time they want, and an hourly fee which varies depending on what car she takes. Reservation, pickup and return are all self-service, unlike renting a car, and also limited to office hours. All programs will have a different size fleet with different size cars. Zipcar, one of the larger programs has a wide range of vehicle types that can accommodate any of Michelle’s needs. If she just has to run a string of errands she will take a Prius, but if she wanted to move a piano, a pickup truck would be the proper choice. Or, if she wanted to impress a date she could roll up in a BMW M class with some Coltrane filtering through the speakers. It only takes a couple minutes to reserve a car on the internet or phone, just make sure you return it in the right spot within the time you reserved it for.
reppin' the streets

reppin' the streets

Michelle has been a member for a year, and in that time she has never wished she owned a car. Bus lines take her in and around Pittsburgh, while cycling is another option. Inevitably, more cost and fuel efficient means of transport become the norm when a car is not sitting in your garage waiting for you to take it down the block. Over 1,000 cities world wide have a car share program. It is most cost-effective for people who do not commute long distances and live in metropolitan areas, where congestion and air pollution are usually problems anyway.


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