SnappCar welcomes 200,000th member
“I think the sharing economy is great and I’m happy to share my well-kept and maintained Toyota Yaris, a very nice car with a 1.5 engine that provides an economical and smooth ride.” This text was the introduction of Kristian (31) to participate in SnappCar, the largest on-line platform for members of the public wishing to participate in peer to peer carsharing. Kristian is the 200,000th member of the Utrecht company that will soon be celebrating almost five years in existence. An important milestone towards a Europe where millions of people in urban areas participate in carsharing, but not nearly enough. With 200,000 members in the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden sharing more than 25,000 cars, SnappCar is now the single-largest carsharing platform in Europe and the third largest worldwide. In the coming years SnappCar will focus mainly on signing up new car owners, with technological innovation being a big attraction.
Founders of SnappCar, Victor van Tol (l) and Pascal Ontijd (r).
Of the 200,000 members in the SnappCar community a large number, about 60%, live in and around the major cities of Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam and The Hague, as well as in Stockholm and Copenhagen. Especially in this type of ‘urban area’ throughout Europe, SnappCar expects the number of members to increase considerably in the coming years. Great pressure on accessibility is an important impetus according to Victor van Tol, CEO of SnappCar: “With a growing population and more traffic on the road due to the growing economy, there is an increasing need for fast, flexible mobility, in addition to the train, bus, tube and bicycle. Carsharing helps to reduce the required number of cars and permits more efficient and more versatile use of existing cars. In addition, it has a huge growth potential due to the easily accessible character and great popularity among the public.”
Car owner’s change of mind
In addition to the need for flexible mobility, technology is an important condition for further growth in the coming years. New technology that makes carsharing even easier and more accessible should be particularly helpful in persuading car owners to share their cars. This is the case with the ‘instant booking’ platform introduced this summer where cars can be booked directly without coordination between hirer and owner. Especially in the summer months when cars stand nose to tail for week after week, hundreds of members have already made intensive use of this service. This summer SnappCar also made the switch to ‘paperless’ procedures, where the entire process, from reservation to payment, is completely digital. Finally, SnappCar is currently working very hard to ensure that during 2017 members will have ‘keyless’ access to the shared cars.
Reducing costs and the Volkswagen Polo
Why is it that the members of SnappCar start carsharing anyway? Both for the car rental companies (75%) and car hirers (80%) cost saving is by far the most important reason to share a car. In addition, hirers (70%) select carsharing because they can have a shared car that is close to home, often in the same street, In addition to the cost issue a major reason for hirers to participate in carsharing (55%) is the opportunity to meet fun, interesting people. An important motivation for many hirers is also ’doing good’ and helping others (70%). Among members of SnappCar the Volkswagen Polo is by far the most popular car. It is the most readily available and the most hired car. For an amount ranging from €15 to €35 per day you can quickly be on the road. After the Polo, the Peugeot 206 and the Citroën Berlingo are the most hired cars.
SnappCar, founded in 2011 by Victor van Tol and Pascal Ontijd, the largest Dutch and second largest European online community, where individuals can easily share their well-insured cars. As a social enterprise SnappCar wants to make a positive difference on an environmental, economic and social level. Together, the 200,000 members of the SnappCar community in Denmark, Germany, Netherlands and Sweden ensure a stronger social network in districts and municipalities, more space, less CO2 emissions, and cost savings. www.SnappCar.nl