A new concept to reduce congestion hits Cornwall this weekend. The ‘swipe and drive’ scheme will begin to operate in Truro and Falmouth by offering cars on a ‘pay as you go basis’ .
Low emission vehicles are left at stations and car parks. The not for profit social enterprise Co-cars who will manage the scheme say they have streamlined the process down to a simple ‘Click, Swipe and Drive’.
Once you’re a member you can book a car 24/7 on line or via a smartphone, swipe your membership card against the windscreen to unlock the car, enter a PIN and drive off. Members pick-up and return to the specially-reserved parking bays.
“Co-cars members have the convenience of a car without the hassles and costs of car ownership. Members pay for a car only when they want to use one” claims Mark Hodgson, Founder and Managing Director of Co-cars.
The first Co-cars in Cornwall will be based at Truro and Falmouth Town railway stations and Truro’s Pydar Street car park. Co cars already operate in Devon, Wiltshire, Dorset, and now have extende their network to Cornwall. Cars are located at many railway stations so people can connect their train journey with a station-based ‘hire by the hour’ car – very ‘joined-up’! Co-cars membership provides access to all Co-cars vehicles across the country, not just the Cornish ones. So for example, if you are on business in Exeter for the day you can now go up by train but also have the convenience of a car the other end.
Individual and household membership costs £25 per year, and there are two pricing options for businesses. Each hire costs from £3.75 per hour, plus 15p per mile. There are discounts for daily hire. Fuel, insurance, tax, maintenance and emergency cover are all included so there are no hidden costs.
The Council are supporting this initiative as they are running successfully in other areas of the country including Devon and Dorset. As well as helping to purchase the cars Cornwall Council has provided marked parking bays for two cars at no cost.
Mark Hodgson, Founder and Managing Director of Co-cars and his team will be at Lemon Quay, Truro this Saturday (15 July) from 9am offering free first year residential membership for people who join within 7 days.
He said “We are very pleased to be extending the car club into Cornwall and giving residents access to cars across our network. And all this for only £25 per household membership (for two adults). It’s convenient, clever and once you ‘Co-car it’, you won’t look back. You’ll save a surprising amount of money – up to £3,500 per year for the average household. That goes a long way towards funding a family holiday.”
If you are interested in finding out more, but are unable to attend the event, go to www.co-cars.co.uk , call 0345 345 2544 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.