Green Careers Guide

Car Sharing

Car sharing has become an increasingly common concept today. What is it? Car sharing is the concept of sharing a vehicle rather than owning it outright. It is similar to carpooling, only you do not ride with other people in every case. It is also similar to a car rental with the exception that you will be renting the car for shorter distances and shorter time periods, sometimes as little as an hour or two.

What Type of Certification or License Do I Need?

A valid driver's license is of course, a must. It might also be necessary to have a commercial driver's license or a chauffer's license in some parts of the country. You must also have a business permit as well.

What are the Initial Investments and Expenses?

The cars themselves will be one of your biggest investment and many people will obviously start small in this industry. You will also need a place to keep these vehicles and the insurance to cover your business and the driver's as well.

What are the Risks?

The high cost of the insurance that is needed will be really high to begin with, but there are other risks to consider as well. In urban areas where there is easy, accessible and affordable public transportation there is going to be a very limited need for such a service. In smaller urban areas, it may be just as easy to own a hybrid and carpool with friends as it would be to rent a car for a day or a few hours. And in sprawling suburbs or rural areas, having your own vehicle may be imperative to daily life.

Who is the Competition?

The urban area public transportation services like buses and taxi cabs will be your major competition there. In other areas, you will be competing against the nationally known and recognized franchises.

What is the Income Potential?

Depending on the market size and the competition level, you could start showing profit on your investment in a year, provided that you bought well and are charging fair prices for your service.

What makes it Green?

Fewer people are opting to own a car as the cost of insurance and other necessities skyrocket out of control. Some people have given up their vehicle out of concern for the government, but cannot afford to buy a hybrid at this time.

That being said, owning and renting out a fleet of gas guzzling SUVs defeats the purpose. You must invest in energy efficient vehicles or you will lose all credibility as a green company. If you cannot afford to go with a fleet of hybrid cars, then make one hybrid purchase and add others as you can. Just do not make do with any clunker you find- just because you can pay for it does not mean you can afford it.

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