Gasoline Volume Sales Are Down: Car Sharing For the Win!

iStock_000004341760SmallIt is no secret that Americans love their cars and we rely on gas to get around. Most cars today use gas as fuel, although there are a few that are hybrid or electric. Recent estimates from the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration show that gas sales may be down over the last few quarters. Part of the reason for this may be that a New York car share community has been established to help people save on personal gas consumption and instead share a car with other users.

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Why Free Parking is a Problem

HiResIn many areas of the country, free parking is common. But in New York City, parking will cost you an arm and a leg if you are not lucky enough to find it for free. Even when it is free, there are usually a number of conditions attached. For example, you may need to move your car during certain hours or switch sides of the street at a specific time. This is where a Brooklyn car share community can be beneficial because of the dedicated parking spots for cars around the city.

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Are You Addicted to Your Car?

i love my new car. beautiful young woman holding her carThere is no doubt that Americans are addicted to cars. Cars have been part of American households since Henry Ford started making them affordable for the average family (as long as they didn’t mind the color black). Even in urban areas, few people who can afford a car and the associated costs figure out just exactly how much they are spending.

The convenience of owning a car and having the freedom to use it outweighs the costs. However, in recent years, a new option has been available. A New York car share service offers an alternative to owning or renting a car, and instead offers flexibility for short trips.

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A brief history of Carpingo, Brooklyn’s car sharing service

l-carpingo-brooklynThe 2012 launch of Carpingo, with (left to right) Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce president
Carlo Scissura, Assemblyman Alan Maisel, Carpingo CEO Gil Cygler, and Brooklyn borough
president Marty Markowitz.  | AutoRentalNews.com

Lifelong Brooklynite Gil Cygler had been running AllCar Rent-a-Car for three decades when he decided to branch out into the burgeoning car-sharing market. So in 2012 he launched Carpingo, a locally owned company with a fleet of cars operating out of 12 locations in Brooklyn. Two years ago this month, Carpingo held a kickoff ceremony in the shadow of Borough Hall that featured a ribbon-cutting by Borough President Marty Markowitz. You can’t get much more Brooklyn than that.

Though car sharing has become a major component in the way that city dwellers the world over get around, there are surprisingly few locally run companies out there. Since its launch, Carpingo has expanded to include many more car pickup spots in Brooklyn, as well as a few in Long Island City in Queens. To date, Carpingo is the only locally run car-sharing service in all of New York City.

These days, the way to join is still simple: Pick a membership plan, pay as little as $6.50 per hour to rent a car, and your gas and insurance—up to 180 miles per day— is taken care of. Click here to find out more.

Day trips from Brooklyn: Staten Island

staten-island-lighthousesLighthouses of Staten Island | via LighthouseFriends.comTheLighthousePeople.comSILive.com

It may be right across the bay from Brooklyn, but Staten Island can feel remote. Only reachable via ferry from Manhattan or the cars-only Verrazano–Narrows Bridge, Staten Island remains New York City’s least-populous borough, home to parks, beaches and historic sites dating back to pre-colonial times. It’s the closest you can get to a small-town getaway without leaving the city — book a car now and get ready to explore! (more…)

Brooklyn Car Share and Insurance: A Look Under the Hood

Brooklyn Car ShareCar insurance has always been a bit of a confusing topic. A critical element of car ownership, insurance is what financially protects you and your property in the case of an accident or theft. But just how does car insurance factor into the car sharing equation here at Carpingo, and why are so many companies like Uber and Lyft running into issues concerning their insurance coverage? These are all great questions, and queries that we often hear at our Brooklyn headquarters. And while we’ve posted information on our Brooklyn car sharing insurance policies in the past, it’s worth revisiting regularly in order to remind our current and prospective members just how our model differs from ride sharing organizations and what that means when it comes to your coverage. (more…)

Car Sharing and The New Campus Parking Lot

Car SharingHow can you tell car sharing is here to stay? Simply take a look at college campuses across the nation and ask yourself this: Just how many freshmen are heading off to college with a set of car keys in their pocket?

The answer? Not a whole lot.

Now, ask yourself how many freshman will be taking advantage of campus car sharing services. The answer? Upwards of 30 percent.  (more…)

Do Car Share Members Really Drive Less?

BlizzardWe’ve all read the new stories proclaiming the automobile is dead. That, try as automakers might, the next generation of American’s aren’t interested in driving off into the sunset. They’re too busy pedaling their way around town on their bike, or frantically running after the A train. It’s a wonderful thought, isn’t it? The idea that American’s are over their vehicle loving ways. But in all honesty, the vast majority of American households do own cars. It’s just so darn convenient to walk out your front door and slip in behind the wheel of your own car. (more…)

Take Me Out to the Ball Game: Trips You Never Thought Your Brooklyn Car Share Could Handle

iStock_000002006522SmallThink your Brooklyn car share membership will only come in handy when you need to run to the grocery store or grab your son from soccer practice? Well, think again! When it comes to convenient and affordable transportation, nothing beats having your own vehicle. Unless, of course, that vehicle is a car share and costs you only a fraction of the price of owning your own car. Remember: as a car share member, you enjoy all the perks of a personal vehicle without any fuel, maintenance or insurance hassles.

And when we say all the perks, we mean all the perks. Want to spend the afternoon shopping in Midtown? You can use a car share for that. Need to head upstate for a family reunion? Our car share vehicles can get you there. Because with Carpingo, we go anywhere you need to go. (more…)

Take a car to the Bronx Zoo and New York Botanical Garden

One of the new baby gorillas at the Bronx Zoo | Julie Larsen Maher via BronxZoo.com

The Bronx boasts some of the city’s coolest natural attractions. But the prospect of a two-hour, three-borough subway ride up the length of Manhattan may have stopped you short of making the trek. That’s where reserving a car from Carpingo can come in handy. It’s a straight shot up the BQE to New York’s northernmost borough, where you’ll find some of the most whoa-inducing flora and fauna in town.

Head out early and start your day at the Bronx Zoo, the largest metropolitan menagerie on the planet. More than 4,000 beasts call this 265-acre preserve home. Explore immersive habitats like the African Plains, grazed by lions, giraffes and zebras, or the Himalayan Highlands, featuring red pandas, snow leopards and white-naped cranes. Hitch a ride on the Wild Asia Monorail to see antelope, rhinos and elephants along the Bronx River. Latest additions to the zoo include a trio of prehistoric-looking Komodo dragons and two baby gorillas (awww).

MEC-Rose-Garden-summer-2-600x400New York Botanical Garden in August | NYBG.org

Still up for more nature? Lucky for you, the 250-acre New York Botanical Garden is located right next door. Created in 1891 and inspired by London’s Royal Botanic Gardens, the NYBG is five times larger than the closer-to-home Brooklyn Botanic Garden. The sprawling park includes a 50-acre forest that’s made up of some of the last original-growth trees in New York City. For decidedly less local flora, stroll through the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory. The largest Victorian glass house in America contains a tropical rainforest. Through September 7, you can also check out “Mrs. Rockefeller’s Garden,” which features plants inspired by Abby Aldrich Rockefeller’s plantings in Maine.

If you make your trip on July 24 or August 21, stick around later for Jazz Age Evenings, a garden party complete with dance lessons, cocktails, and 1920s-style tunes from Michael Arenella and His Dreamland Orchestra (6–9pm; $30). Perfect for a date or a visiting mom…you’re welcome. Reserve your car now!