Mon, May 15, 2017 - Page 16 News List

Automobile-sharing company Zipcar to enter Taipei in Q2

Staff writer, with CNA

Zipcar Inc, the largest vehicle-sharing service network in the world, on Saturday announced that it is to enter the Taipei market in the second quarter of this year.

The new venture would be the first time Zipcar has provided services in the Asia-Pacific region.

Boston-headquartered Zipcar operates under a self-help automobile rental business model in which members have access to cars in its fleet that are parked at certain pick-up locations after making a reservation on its online system.

Zipcar, a subsidiary of car rental services provider Avis Budget Group, is available in more than 500 cities and college campuses in many nations, including Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Spain, Turkey, the UK and the US.

Founded in 2000, Zipcar allows clients to rent a vehicle by the hour or the day.

The company said it decided to use Taipei as a starting point to enter the Asia-Pacific market because the city has a well-educated population and many residents are familiar with the sharing economy.

Hotai Leasing Co (和運租車), a subsidiary of car vendor Hotai Motor Corp (和泰汽車), provides an hourly rental service, whereby clients can use their EasyCards to rent a car for up to 10 hours a day with an hourly fee of NT$168.

Zipcar did not provide details about prospective rental fees and its pick-up locations.

According to market information advisory firm Navigant Research, the number of car-sharing users is expected to reach 23.4 million by 2024.

Authorities in the US and Europe believe that a vehicle-sharing model could help solve traffic jams and reduce air pollution.

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