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Zipcar Unveils New Zipvan Line in Philly
Philly

Zipcar Unveils New Zipvan Line in Philly

Zipcar is one of Philly’s prime car sharing solutions for urban dwellers who want to live a mostly car-less life but need wheels every once in awhile.

Now the world’s leading car sharing network is expanding to include Zipvan™ cargo van service across North America. Zipcar is launching the Zipvan service in Philadelphia, Seattle, Los Angeles, and Portland, Oregon and will expand to other markets over the next year.

I had a chance to ask Zipcar Philly’s General Manager, Peter Bruvik, some questions about the new van sharing initiative .

Here’s a portion of our Q & A session:

GPB:  What was the company’s motivation to add van service?

Peter: To provide some background on the service, Zipvan initially started in London and we expanded it to North America as a pilot program in November 2011, starting with San Francisco. Introducing the vans to a market with a great base of Zipsters and some famously trying streets was a great way to launch, and it was also well received by Zipcar members when we introduced Zipvan in Boston, Chicago, Toronto and Washington, DC earlier this year.

Building off knowledge gained from the initial launches, we’re very excited to launch Zipvans here in Philadelphia.  We know that Philadelphia can be notoriously difficult for transporting large or bulky items because of our busy streets, so we thought the city would be a great next step for our Zipvan expansion. We’re excited that we were able to launch prior to Labor Day weekend, as we know it’s a popular time to move.  And in addition to those using the vans for personal purposes – such as to move apartments or take trips to IKEA – we also hope the Zipvans will be a benefit to local small businesses who might use the service to make deliveries, or transport goods and supplies.  We look forward to offering the benefits of Zipvan to the Philadelphia community.

GPB: What are the environmental benefits of the Zipvan line?

Peter: The Zipvan service is a nice addition to our full fleet of car sharing vehicles here in Philadelphia, including pickup trucks, SUVs and more.  Environmental impact and sustainability is a significant social benefit derived from car sharing in general, of which Zipvan is now a part.

At Zipcar, our mission is to enable simple and responsible urban living. An independent research firm, Frost & Sullivan, estimates that every shared vehicle removes 15 personally owned vehicles from the road, creating less traffic and congestion for urban and suburban areas.

GPB: What advantages does Zipvan have over competitors, such as Uhaul and others?

Peter: At Zipcar we strive to enable convenient and responsible urban living, and in a busy city like Philadelphia this is something we really focus on. We believe the Zipvan service is changing how people move and transport goods, much in the way Zipcar altered the way consumers look at car ownership and traditional car rental. By bringing Zipvan to Philadelphia we believe we are transforming a traditionally inconvenient experience into an experience that consumers and Zipcar members love.

Access to the Zipvan is self-serve, so members won’t experience the hassles of long lines, paperwork and additional charges associated with traditional van rental.  We worked diligently to make sure that our new Philadelphia Zipvans are located in the neighborhoods where our members live and work, so they are convenient to find and accessible to use, and members won’t need to drive to a remote location outside of the city to pick up a Zipvan. They can be reserved via multiple devices and on short notice. They are priced by the hour or by the day, making it convenient to reserve a van just for a couple hours, or for a full weekend.  As with all vehicles in the Zipcar fleet, Zipvan pricing includes gas, insurance, roadside assistance and up to 180 miles of driving per day.

GPB: How far in advance do customers need to reserve vans?

Peter: Zipvans can be reserved on-demand just five minutes ahead of time, or up to a year in advance.  We would always recommend booking as far out as possible though, especially if you have a big move or event that you know you’ll need a van for.  Zipvans can be reserved online at www.Zipcar.com, or by using the Zipcar mobile app on iPhone or Android devices – making the reservation process as easy as possible.

Readers, any big moving plans or furniture shopping in your future? Give Zipvan a shot and let us know what you thought!

 

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Beth is a Health and Wellness expert who believes sustainability goes hand-in-hand with self care. She’s the girl whipping up kombucha cocktails at parties, and extolling the benefits of canning vegetables to anyone who will listen. View all posts by Beth Funari

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