Although they are not fighting for the same market, you are never going off-topic by introducing Uber in a Zipcar conversation. The two companies offer the same solution; the best next option for anyone who, for some reason, can’t drive to where they need to be.
So, What’s the Difference between Zipcar and Uber?
First off, note that both business’s involve you using someone else’s car to move from point A to point B. The basic difference is Uber gives you a car and a driver (the owner of the car) while Zipcar only gives you a car and, well, a key. Uber acts just as a trusted link between car owners who may wish to use their cars as cabs for passengers, while Zipcar actually owns the entire Zipcar fleet.
For Uber, you have two options; the old-school black car service or the ride-sharing option UberX. Zipcar, on the other hand, offers you a monthly subscription car rental plan with hourly charges and a mileage fee.
Unlike Uber, which sends a driver to pick you up whence you are, Zipcar has designated stations across different cities where you can go and rent a car for as long as you need and to wherever you want. You only need a membership card known as the “Zipcard” with which you will unlock an available car in a station near you. A clear difference there as you can see, but which one is the best for you?
Benefits of Zipcar over Uber
Clearly, Zipcar’s model was created for long-term car renting, and thus far, other agencies cannot match the company’s efficacy. An Uber driver won’t take you around town through multiple stops and return you home when you’re done with your business. Unless we’re talking about the black car option UberBLACK, journeys like this are sure to be inconvenient using Uber’s mode of operation. The form of payment itself should also influence your decision. Uber charge by the minute and mile (presumably because UberX is meant for short distances), which would prove costlier than Zipcar which charges on an hourly basis.
Also, in case you are out for some private business, moving around in a chauffeured car wouldn’t harmonize well with the desired environment. Zipcar, in the absence of a privately owned car provides the next best transit alternative.
Lastly, Zipcar, unlike Uber lets you choose the type of car – from a range of compact economy cars such as Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic – you want to drive. For the record, all cars come with automatic transmission.
Benefits of Uber over Zipcar
Uber has just as many benefits as Zipcar, depending on your situation. If you suffer a driving phobia, for instance, you’re not going to find solace in Zipcar. Same case with when you’re injured and can’t drive or your license is suspended. Imagine yourself renting a car so you can attend a 4-hour business meeting two miles away. That means you will be paying for the time you are in the meeting. In the meantime, the car is parked outside, unused. It doesn’t make the least bit of sense, and that’s where Uber has the advantage.
If you want to move to the other side of the city, and are not sure if you’re going to need the ride back or are just going to spend too much time in one place, UberX would be the perfect choice. You will just have to pay the pickup fee and the per-minute charge. If the streets are traffic-free and journeys are short, this will be much cheaper.
Ten years younger than Zipcar, Uber, has worked its way to the top by addressing almost everything Zipcar couldn’t cover. This has set the pace for newer ride-sharing companies such as Lyft to follow. Its convenience for short distance transit has given it a particularly competitive edge against competitors. This, along with regular updates on the app, has helped keep rivals lagging behind in terms of service.
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