London, November 2011 – Europcar, the leader in car hire services in Europe for both leisure and business users, is urging motorists to think about alternatives to car ownership as latest news from the RAC suggests that it now costs over £6,600 per year to keep a car on the road.
“Clearly for many families have accessing to a vehicle day and night is vital – it’s what UK families are used to” said Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar. “But for those families with several vehicles it may well be worth giving serious consideration to ditching the second or third car and just hiring when they need an extra set of wheels.
“At Europcar we have been seeing a growing trend over the last couple of years of more people hiring for day to day needs and as an alternative to second car ownership. By hiring a car you can eliminate all the other costs – insurance, maintenance and roadside assistance and also reduce fuel consumption by as much as a third by driving a nearly new car in a more efficient way.
“It’s a trend that is sure to grow as the cost of running cars – fuel, insurance, etc – eats into already stretched household budgets.”
As well as its standard car hire services, Europcar operates Europcar Club which is ideal for motorists who want to use car hire on a regular basis, with access to the full network of Europcar locations around the UK at discounted rates.
John Lynch of Walton on Thames took the decision last year to give up his car, after 27 years of ownership
John says: “Like most people, I have always had a car and just lived with the expense – I assumed I couldn’t do without it and actually never gave it a great deal of thought. However, last year my car (which was a BMW Touring) needed some major work. When I found out that the cost of the work was more than the value of the car itself, my immediate response was that I would either just have to grin and bear it or buy a new car. Both options were going to be costly and I really resented it. We were just about to move home with all the expense that entailed, so I started to think about how much I actually needed a car on a day to day basis – could I actually survive without a car and did I actually want to? I commute into work each day – the train station is just a walk away, I am a keen cyclist and my partner has a company car we could share at the weekend.
“So I took the plunge and while I don’t think we could manage without at least one car in the household, giving up the second car has actually been quite liberating. At first the thought of not having a set of car keys to grab at a moment’s notice was a bit scary but I think you can get quite lazy and don’t realise that you can cope quite easily without a car full time.
“Now I just rent from Europcar when I need a car – it’s proved so much simpler and I have saved in the region of £2,000 a year in the process.”