Owning a car in West Hampstead always seems a bit pointless. Three bus routes, three rail stations, even more within walking distance… who needs the hassle and expense of insurance, parking permits, the congestion charge? Plus, I don’t know if you’ve noticed this, but cars are all kinds of expensive to buy.
But then there’s that trip to IKEA you have to do (have you even tried walking back to Neasden station with a flatpack of Malm drawers – my advice, don’t), there’s the impromptu weekend away, or helping a friend move house. Even if we don’t love them, it’s hard to deny that cars are useful from time to time.
Car clubs have been around a while now, and West Hampstead is really the ideal location for them. There’s enough on-street parking plus the enormous car park by the O2 centre where we can park even more. Even councils like car clubs and ask for designated parking spaces for them in big new developments.
Zipcar is the world’s largest pay-as-you-drive car club. It has more than 777,000 members in five countries and more than 1,500 vehicles in London alone. There are 10 times as many Zipcar locations as there are Starbucks in London offering VW Polos, Golfs, Tourans, Audi A3s and even vans. There are plenty of cars locally as you can see:
How does it work?
There are no fixed costs: Zipcar takes care of insurance, road tax, maintenance, roadside assistance and the congestion charge. All reservations also include 40 miles of fuel per day.
The Zipcar iPhone and Android apps make booking a car easy – you can find and reserve Zipcars in minutes. You can even honk the horn to locate your car and unlock the doors
Annual membership costs £59.50 and rates start at just £5/hr. I’ll do the maths for you: the typical Zipcar member saves £264 per month (£3,162 per year) compared to owning their own vehicle.
And you can win a year’s membership and £50 of driving credit with West Hampstead Life.
Think what you could do with 10 hours of driving time. In fact, don’t just think about it: tell us. To win a year’s membership and the £50 of credit, set out in no more than 80 words what you’d do and where you’d go in 10 hours…. starting in West Hampstead, of course. Send your entries to moc.e1464194688filda1464194688etspm1464194688ahtse1464194688w@pmo1464194688cracp1464194688iz1464194688.
Your deadline is 5pm May 15th. The winner will be contacted on May 17th. Please read the terms and conditions below (specifically, you must be at least 21 and hold a full valid driving licence); entering the competition means you accept the T&C.
1. Entrants must be UK residents, at least 21 years-old, and be eligible to join Zipcar.
2. Purchase of Zipcar membership is not necessary to enter.
3. Entries (max one per person) must be submitted by 5pm BST on 15th May 2013.
4. One prize will be awarded of a year’s membership of Zipcar together with £50 of driving credit.
5. Participation in this competition is subject to the full Terms and Conditions of the Competition (http://www.westhampsteadlife.com/p/zipcar-competition-full-terms-conditions.html?m=1).
6. Entering and participating in the competition constitutes acceptance of the Competition’s full Terms and Conditions.