Mendes & Cork City Council GoCar Car Sharing

This is an absolutely brilliant service. I realise it’s not new, but still, fair balls to Cork City Council for innovating at an Irish level.

Car-pool programme initiated in Cork city (Sunday Business Post)

Residents of Cork city can sign up to share a pool of cars under a new transport initiative.

Cork City Council has entered a partnership with Mendes GoCar, a company that will provide vehicles for car-sharing for periods of as little as one hour.

It is the first time the system has been used in Ireland, but it has been in operation in Switzerland and Germany for 20 years, and for more than ten years in other parts of Europe, Britain and the US.

Private users of the system sign up online and pay a once-off fee of €50, while business customers register for €100 and pay €25 for any additional drivers. All users must have a full licence with at least two years’ driving experience, and have to pay a refundable deposit of €200.

Once authorised, they get a smartcard which unlocks the cars at a particular time, and a customer identification number, which is entered into a handset to start the car. There are eight vehicles in the fleet – six Ford Fiestas, one Ford Focus and one Ford Transit.

(Thanks for the pointer Damien.)

2 Responses

  1. I used car pooling here in Malmö last year, before ze baby came, and it was very handy indeed. Petrol was included (if the tank was <½ when you were finished, you were required to fill the car using a petrol card that belonged to that specific car). The cars themselves were usually ethanol-driven. The smaller cars were cheaper, but it was handy to have access to a huge Volvo to make a pre-baby run to IKEA. Booking via internet, and reserved parking spaces in a number of locations around the city (I think there were three locations that were all very close to where we live).

    We did eventually buy a car, and I actually think that it’s both handier and cheaper to own a car than the car pool was, if you want to do more than shopping once a week and maybe one more short journey per week. A few other things changed at the same time: I worked farther away from home, and Sara’s parents moved farther away. If we hadn’t chosen to buy a car, I’d definitely still be in that car pool. I hope it works out for Cork.

  2. It’s the Transit I’d be thinking about myself, given the regularity with which I move house (another move in the offing right now!), although I’d wonder about the monthly fee. If I couldn’t get out of it afterwards, it might be cheaper to rent from a proper rental agency. (It won’t be Avis after their treatment of us in Croatia btw!)

    For someone living in Cork city without a car though, it’s an absolutely brilliant idea, I hope people don’t screw it up like they did the bikes.