• 5
Want to participate in car sharing but think that whole "I want to use a car when I need one" thing is only half the story? Then you might like RelayRides, a peer-to-peer car sharing network that add a leap of trust element to the Zipcar model.
The idea is that owners can offer up their car for other people to use when it would otherwise just be sitting there. Through a web-based reservation system and an installed device that includes GPS and other features, any parked car could theoretically become a car sharing car.

We're going to assume that readers immediately thought up a lot of questions about this system. For them, there are two FAQs, one for owners, another for renters. The gist is that people who participate in RelayRides trust one another enough to give strangers access to their cars for a fee. Insurance is covered by an "an independent, national carrier," so if something really bad happens when the car is being rented, you're covered. A smaller ding, under $500, will be the responsibility of the renter unless they notice it before driving off and report it to the system. Also, gas is a little tricky. You'd get paid for the time someone is using your car, but you're still responsible for the gas. It looks like you'd make more than you'd spend, but we'd like to see a few more numbers to understand the system better.

Any car, as long as it runs and is clean and has power locks, can be signed up for RelayRides. The better your car, the more you can get paid. The website says you can make up to $8,000 a year – if you offer up a luxury car in "new and in perfect condition" and it gets used for 20 hours a week. Even with the FAQs and this article, we've still got a few questions about this (for example, the website says the installed device "makes it impossible to start the car without a reservation," so what about emergencies? Can the owner override the system?), but overall, it seems like a cool new idea. Newish, anyway. RelayRides officially got started last April, and the first vehicles in the system will soon go online in Baltimore and "we are launching in several other major cities in the coming months." Thanks to Jeremy S. for the tip!

[Source: RelayRides via Shareable]


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 5 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      yeah it's a romantic notion but I don't have much faith in it in practice. I'm much more of a beleiver in people's cars. a barebone lean inexpensive car everynoe can have

      alternatively I can believe in a robot cab system for cities. you call for one, it comes, takes you wherever you need to go and drives off. at a good price. not cab fair.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Does this service come with the drugs that allow you to think this is a good idea???
      • 4 Years Ago
      "..- if you offer up a luxury car in "new and in perfect condition" and it gets used for 20 hours a week"

      How long do you expect your new perfect condition car to stay that way? Clearly these folks have never driven a rental car. Imagine if someone leaves drugs in your car, or uses it for a crime. I'm sure the "independent, national carrier" would pay for your lawyer.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'll let the rest of you test this one out.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I would be so happy to take the keys to EVsuperhero's yellow Corvette. I promise I'll be good!

      ;)