Q&A: CarShare Vermont

CarShare VT is an excellent local resource for young drivers who don’t yet have a car (and it’s featured on our Transportation page!).

This week, Alicia Taylor at CarShare VT explains how carsharing can not only get you from A to B, but can also help protect the environment and develop our community. Check out our Q&A below!

What is CarShare VT and how does it work?

CarShare Vermont is a Burlington-based nonprofit organization on a mission to provide an affordable, reliable, and convenient alternative to car ownership.

We have a neighborhood-based fleet of 22 vehicles parked in convenient locations throughout Burlington that our members can reserve and drive by the hour or day, 24/7. 

Who can apply for a CarShare membership?

If you’re 18 or over, with a good driving record, plus two years of driving experience, you’re in! If you’re unsure, you can review our eligibility requirements. Once approved, we’ll get you going in 1-2 business days.

How much does it cost to be a member?

We have a few different rate plans, including our MobilityShare plan, which offers free annual memberships with discounted driving rates to income-eligible individuals and households.

If you qualify for 3 Squares VT you qualify for MobilityShare! There’s a one-time application fee of $15-30, and then you pay by the hour or day plus mileage whenever you reserve a car.

How long can a car reservation be?

Members can book a vehicle for as little as 30 minutes or up to 10 days.

Where can members drive their cars?

Our vehicles can go anywhere in the U.S. and Canada!

What happens if the car you reserved runs out of gas or a charge?

Gas (and insurance) are always included in our driving rates. Every car has a gas card, and you can fill it up as needed. The vehicles need to be returned with at least a ¼ tank of gas at the end of your trip.

If you’re driving an electric vehicle, charge cards are also provided so you can charge up as needed during your trip. Each electric vehicle has a designed charging station at its parking spot that you can plug into at the end of your trip.

Sydney, the Toyota Prius Prime at the ONE Community Center

Let’s say someone wanted to take a car from 191 North Street in Burlington to the VGA in South Burlington. If they brought the car back after an hour, how much would the trip cost?

Here’s a breakdown of what that trip to the VGA would cost based on our different rate plans and whether you book a standard vehicle like the one at the ONE Community Center or a premium one like the one at the top of Church Street. Also, please note that our rates are changing on July 1 so these calculations reflect our new rates vs. what’s currently on the website.

Rate PlanStandard VehiclePremium Vehicle

What are the biggest perks of having a CarShare membership?

In addition to getting some excellent discounts at local businesses around town, carsharing is great for the environment, our community, and your wallet! It can help you:

  • Save money
    When you add up car payments, insurance, gas, and depreciation, the average car in Vermont costs well over $700 a month to own before it even leaves the driveway!
  • Protect the planet
    Owning a car increases driving, and driving is the most polluting activity most Vermonters undertake on a daily basis – accounting for over half of our state’s greenhouse gas emissions. Carsharing results in less driving.
  • Enhance our community
    By providing access to vehicles at a fraction of the cost of ownership, we help people get where they need to go more affordably. Our free MobilityShare plan ensures that everyone in our community has access to reliable and convenient transportation options regardless of income.

How can young adults in Chittenden County get the most out of CarShare?

If you’re eligible for membership, fill out an application today and join our carsharing community! You can learn more at carsharevt.org, call (802) 861-2340, or email info@carsharevt.org with any questions.