Last updated on November 18th, 2022 at 09:51 am
Car sharing is becoming an increasingly viable alternative to buying a car in Germany. Expats or any foreigners who plan to stay in Germany for a short term or anyone who wants to save money can benefit from car sharing services and save up on rising fuel prices in Germany.
Car sharing in Germany might be fairly new, but it is rapidly becoming popular amongst the locals.
Currently, 740 cities have car-sharing services in Germany. More than 2,460,000 German residents are registered with these car-sharing providers. As of the beginning of 2019, a total of almost 20,200 vehicles were available for car-sharing in Germany.
The biggest advantage of car sharing in Germany is that it significantly reduces the financial burdens of car ownership. It is no wonder that more and more locals are deciding to rely on car sharing in Germany, particularly with the rapidly rising fuel prices in Germany in 2022.
The flat fee of car sharing in Germany covers the cost of
- Car purchase costs
- Car loans,
- Car insurance,
- Fuel prices in Germany,
- General car maintenance
SHARE NOW is one of the biggest car-sharing providers in Germany. You can use their services for as low as 0,19 € per minute, which covers the fixed costs of car loans, car insurance, fuel prices in Germany, and overall maintenance.
Featured image: Photo by SHARE NOW on Unsplash
1) Advantages of Car Sharing in Germany
1.1) Cheaper than owning a car in Germany
Car ownership in Germany is expensive! One had to account not only for the actual cost of the car, but also the interest rate (if financing the car), car insurance, or driver’s liability insurance.
General maintenance of the car in Germany is also extremely expensive. From personal experience, we have paid over €500 just for diagnostics, and fixing issues have cost us in excess of €1k in the past years. Cars like any other machines tend to develop problems sooner or later.
With car sharing in Germany, you only pay for the journeys you take.
1.2) Savings on fuel prices in Germany
Fuel prices in Germany are rising steeply and they might get even higher.
An average car owner in Germany pays 1.24% of a typical salary towards the cost of fuel. This is expected to rise sharply in 2022.
With German car-sharing providers such as SHARE NOW, you don’t even need to refuel the cars, but if you choose to, the cost is on them and they even give you credit for it!
When you use car-share in Germany with SHARE NOW, you don’t pay for the fuel prices in Germany at their partner gas stations. In fact, you’re rewarded with bonus minutes if the tank is at half or lower when picked up and over 90% when dropped off.
So how does SHARE NOW refuel work?
You can refuel your SHARE NOW car in the following simple steps:
- Use your SHARE NOW app to find a partner petrol station.
- Select the Refuel option in the app.
- Enter your pump number in the app (before refueling your car!).
- Fill up the tank.
- SHARE NOW will take care of the payment automatically and, where applicable, apply SHARE NOW credit to your account.
GOOD TO KNOW: Each time you fully refuel a SHARE NOW car that has less than 40% of fuel, you earn 5€ of credit. This can be used to pay off your trips and trip-related costs. SHARE NOW refuel is free unless you do so at unapproved petrol stations or outside of the country. In this case, you’ll pay for it yourself and send the original receipt to SHARE NOW.
A similar process applies to electric cars. Each time you fully charge a car that has less than 35% battery level, you earn 5,00 € of credit with SHARE NOW.
1.3) Savings on car insurance
Car insurance in Germany is mandatory for car owners in Germany, and it can be quite costly. Car insurance rates depend on a variety of factors, including the type of car and the age of the driver. They can end up costing more than the car is worth per year to insure. As is usual for the car rental business, car-sharing vehicles are insured. The fee for car sharing in Germany includes the cost of car insurance.
1.4) No need to find or pay for parking
When using a car share in Germany, there are designated spots where you pick up and drop off your car. This is far more convenient for drivers since they do not have to drive around the congested roads and look for parking. Anyone who drives in Germany learns the hard way how finding an appropriate parking place in Germany can soon turn into a time and money consuming circus.
German car sharing providers like SHARE NOW collaborate with local governments so you can park the cars for free on any legal public street parking space within the ‘Home Area’.
The Home Area is an operating area of the car sharing provider, in which their cars free-float around the city and where you can park on the streets for free.
1.5) More convenient than public transport
Even if car sharing in Germany is a fairly new concept, it is still far more flexible and convenient than public transport in Germany. You can not only share a car for a few hours, but also for the long term.
You can also register with several providers at the same time since there is no monthly fee to be paid. This way you can enjoy the real flexibility of car sharing in Germany.
SHARE NOW offers a pre-booking service in which they drop the car at your doorsteps, so you can even plan your journey 30 days in advance easily on their website or app.
2) Types of Car-Sharing in Germany
The principle of car sharing in Germany is always the same with all providers: Flexible and spontaneous availability of a car in your immediate neighbourhood.
There are following three variants of car sharing in Germany:
2.1) Classic Car Sharing
Most car sharing providers in Germany use this model. There are dedicated stations where cars need to be picked up and returned. The car is booked in advance – online or via a smartphone app.
You can select the desired station as well as one of the available cars from their massive fleet. The booking period is set and confirmed during booking, but can also be extended. The return of the car is at the same station or Home Area as the pick-up. The advantage of this alternative is the low cost per hour, in addition to a mileage allowance to be paid on top.
SHARE NOW app offers car sharing in Germany starting from 0,19 cents per minute.
2.2) Private Car Sharing
In addition to commercial car sharing in Germany, there is also an increasing number of private car owners who make their cars temporarily available to their neighbours. Some German car sharing services specialise in bringing together car sharing users and car owners in Germany.
It is a very practical variant of car sharing in Germany, especially in remote rural areas. The advantage of this model is the low price and the wide variety of cars. A drawback is that the cars could be older and not professionally inspected by a provider.
2.3) Flexible Car Sharing
This is also known as free-floating car sharing. This type of car sharing in Germany is based in a dedicated business district or a Home Area. Within this area, the car can be picked up and returned at any convenient place.
Users can search for an available car in close vicinity online or via an app. The advantage of this model is the high flexibility. A downside is the high costs for longer journeys.
Have you ever used car sharing in Germany? Which service providers would you recommend? Did it help to mitigate rising fuel prices in Germany? Let us know in the comments below.
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