LAS VEGAS, Jan. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Zipcar, Inc., the world's largest car sharing provider and Zimride, the largest social online ride sharing community, announced today at the Consumer Electronics Show's (CES) HigherEd TECH conference in Las Vegas, the launch of an integrated car and ride sharing application on five new campuses -- UC Irvine, UC Berkeley, University of San Francisco, University of Maryland and George Mason University.
The integrated Zipcar-Zimride application allows members to share a ride by posting the date, time and destination of the trip to the Zimride campus community. Once posted, Zimride's route algorithm finds and notifies users looking for a ride to the same or nearby destination. Zimride members also may find and share a local Zipcar if a posted ride is not available or does not exist. Campuses integrating Zipcar and Zimride into their overall transportation demand management (TDM) programs will help reduce congestion, parking demand and CO2 emissions while at the same time providing a cost-saving and convenient alternative to car ownership for faculty, staff and students.
"The new generation of students, which Zipcar refers to as 'Generation Z', is open to more efficient, cost-effective and environmentally friendly ways to get around campus, as well as the notion of never owning a car," said Scott Griffith, Chairman and CEO of Zipcar. "The net impact of the integrated Zipcar-Zimride offering is that students, faculty and staff, now have more convenient, smart transportation options and no longer have a need for a personally owned car on campus - setting a precedent for a car-free lifestyle during and post college years."
The Zipcar-Zimride application already is available on 10 campuses across the US, including: UCLA, UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara, UC Santa Cruz, California State University - Long Beach, USC, the State University of New York (SUNY) Purchase, Minnesota, Stanford and the University of Michigan.
"Both Zipcar and Zimride have been proven to reduce parking demand, congestion and emissions - key goals of universities and colleges," said John Zimmer, co-founder and COO of Zimride. "These two services balance easy to use modern technology and social interaction to provide fun and efficient solutions for administrators."
A recent survey of Zimride members, which drew more than 750 responses, illustrated several trends that are driving rapid car and ride sharing adoption while supporting a significant shift of transportation options on campuses throughout North America. The Zimride study also revealed that the most common Zimride trips are for people commuting to and from campus, with the average Zimride member commuting 20 miles round trip and saving about $2,500 per year compared to driving alone. But not all use is for commuting: sporting events, concerts - even the Obama inauguration attracted droves of Zimriders.
"We are committed to providing new ways for our faculty, staff and students to get around campus and the broader Ann Arbor community," said David Miller, Parking & Transportation Services Executive Director, at the University of Michigan. "Zipcar and Zimride help people get where they need to go, without increasing parking demand, traffic or pollution. The fact that it helps people save money is a great added benefit."
Zipcar, which has been offering campus car sharing since 2002, now has programs at more than 150 private and state colleges and universities across the country, including MIT, Columbia, Georgetown, American University, USC, Harvard University, Florida, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, University of Toronto, University of North Carolina, Duke, The University of Chicago, UCLA and Amherst.
Zimride is the largest provider of online social rideshare systems in North America. Since launching in 2007, Zimride's rideshare solutions have served more than 300,000 users across the country and around the world, at more than 35 colleges, universities and corporations including Stanford, UCLA, Eastern Kentucky University, USC, SUNY Purchase, University of Colorado - Boulder, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, UNC Asheville, CIGNA and Wal-Mart. Its ridesharing community is based on simple and intuitive software that combines Google Maps, social networking and a proprietary ridematching algorithm. People looking for rides are connected with people offering rides along a similar route. Zimride works directly with universities, colleges and corporations to maximize the efficiency of their current transportation infrastructure. More information is available at www.zimride.com.
Zipcar is the world's leading car-sharing service with 350,000 members and 6,500 vehicles in urban areas and college campuses throughout 28 North American states and provinces as well as in London, England. As a leader in urban transportation, Zipcar offers more than 30 makes and models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day to savvy city residents and businesses looking for an alternative to the high costs and hassles of owning a car in the city. More information is available at www.zipcar.com.
Zipcar and the Zipcar logo are trademarks of Zipcar, Inc. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners.
SOURCE Zipcar, Inc.