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Using car clubs

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Why use car clubs?

Joining a car club is straight forward and can be an alternative to setting up a pool car scheme. These cars can be used in a similar way to pool cars for meetings and training days. The advantages are that members can use a car when necessary, but only pay for the hours they use it and do not have to pay for maintenance and other overheads – unlike pool cars. 

Car clubs can also offer environmental benefits. The CoMo UK England & Wales Car Club Annual Survey 2017/18 found that the average Car club vehicle produces 43% less CO2 from tailpipe emissions compared to the average UK car, with 36% being electric or hybrid vehicles. The average car club vehicle also typically replaces 6.1 private cars, helping to reduce the strain on available parking within the area 

Car clubs in Devon and how they work

We have four car clubs in Devon: 

Car clubs are flexible and easy to use, with members having access to cars whenever they need them. While cars can be booked in advance, they can also be hired on the spot as and when needed. Bookings can last as little as an hour, and you are only charged for the time you use the car for and the distance you travel in it.  

Payment is automatically processed so all you need to do is book the car, drive away, and then return the car when you have finished. This also allows easy invoicing, as the car club will calculate the distance and cost instead of staff members having to log their journeys and submit expenses. Fuel is included in the cost of the hire, with fuel cards in the cars for when members need to fill the tank up. 

If you are interested in joining a Car Club in Devon, or stationing a car at your workplace, the companies listed above would be happy to discuss your requirements. 

The benefits of car clubs for your business

Joining a car club as a business can have various benefits for your workplace: 

Benefit 1: Invest money in the business, not in vehicle costs:

  • You only pay when you use the car; pool or fleet cars cost money 24/7 (all year round) and hire cars are charged for the full day, whatever the use 
  • Servicing, maintenance and tax are covered by car clubs 
  • Car clubs have designated parking spaces in convenient locations, helping you save on parking costs 
  • Reduce unnecessary mileage claims, as employees can simply claim against the bill 

 Benefit 2: Car club vehicles are conveniently located

  • Car clubs are often located in city/ town centres or accessible locations, for example Co cars have vehicles across Exeter and E-cocars have vehicles just outside Totnes rail station. This is useful for employees who are making business trips and only need a car at their destination 
  • It may be worth enquiring with a car club provider to see if one can be set up near the office if you plan on using it often 

 Benefit 3: Simplify business operations

  • Companies typically experience a lack of control over their car fleet – car clubs provide monthly, itemised bills enabling better control 
  • Insurance is covered by car clubs, so there’s no need to worry about relying on employee’s insurance which can lead to problems over liability 
  • Using the car club will remove the need to process mileage allowances and payments 

 Benefit 4: Contribute towards sustainability

  • All the car clubs listed above use low carbon vehicles which will decrease the environmental impact of your organisation and contribute towards sustainability or corporate social responsibility objectives. Some car clubs, such as Co cars in Exeter or E-cocars in Totnes, offer hybrid or fully electric cars at select locations 

Further information and support

Want to encourage smarter travel to work at your workplace? Devon County Council can offer support* to organisations who want to enable their staff to travel more sustainably and actively. Please get in touch via traveldevon@devon.gov.uk for more information.

*Support offered will depend on availability of funding, COVID-19 restrictions and engagement and commitment of your workplace.

 

When following our toolkits, please check the government guidance for safer travel.

This page was last updated March 2021.


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