Rent a car for your next grocery run

For post-secondary students, it's common to leave home without a regular mode of transportation. In fact, most post-secondary institutions — including Fanshawe College — supply students with a bus pass to make up for this.

But wouldn't it be nice to be able to drive from time to time?

Enter Student CarShare, an all-around- the-clock car service geared towards students 18 and older.

“This is for students to go get groceries, to go on job interviews, go on a date or go home and visit Mom and Dad,” said founder Michael Lende. “It's just a convenience.”

Discount Car and Truck Rentals teamed up with Kia to provide the service, a partnership that will remain in the long run. “We knew [Kia was] targeting 18- to 24-year-olds in terms of how cool their cars were, and how hip their cars were,” said Lende.

How it works: “You can book one of our cars by the hour and it's $8 or $9 an hour, and it includes the gas and the insurance.”

All cars are equipped with a gas card, which will take care of the next fill-up.

Lende said he hopes students can reap the benefits. “They don't need to own a car. They don't need to be stressed out over it,” he said. “They don't have be paying for something when they're not using it.”

There are very few restrictions for renting a car through Student CarShare. “We want clean drivers who have clean records, so we know we're getting the top calibre of the student population of drivers,” said Lende.

To be eligible to rent, drivers must be 18 and carry a G2 or full G driver's licence. Drivers with any at-fault accidents in the last six years or more than one minor charge will not be eligible. Drivers do not have to be students to rent a car through Student CarShare.

Lende said he sees Student CarShare as a teaching opportunity. “[We're] teaching students how to be part of a community, and how to co-exist in a car club.”

CarShare may allow students to evaluate their transportation needs before renting a car. “If you're paying for something by the hour, you're really going to stop and think about [it],” said Lende. “‘Do I really need this? Maybe I can walk. Maybe I can bike.' I think it'll make [students] better consumer[ s] in the end.”

Student CarShare is currently available at 15 campuses across Ontario, including Fanshawe. Lende said he hopes Student CarShare will expand across Canada.

“We would like to be recognized as the car-sharing solution for students nationwide, making it easy for students to get around and to have a car sharing service that is hip and cool and fun.”

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