No Car, No Problem – Getaround App Lets You Rent a Stranger’s Car

In Washington, residents can now rent out their vehicles to strangers using Getaround, a peer-to-peer car-rental app. The car-rental app launched Monday requires owners to register their cars for rent and advertise them online for some additional income.

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Getaround functions like AirBnB in that cars are available to rent for an hour to a few days, depending on their availability and the owner’s preferences. Renters only need to download and activate the app, find the car they like, make reservation, and unlock the vehicle.

Since customers are total strangers, only those who reserve the car may unlock it automatically via the app. The car keys are then hidden somewhere in a pouch or container. No other person can use the car besides the one who made reservations and uses the app to unlock the vehicle.

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Vehicle owners who want their units listed at Getaround need to pay $99 installation fee, and $20 membership. Only cars with less than 125,000 mileage and less than 10 years old are allowed for listing with the app network.

Getaround guarantees car owners an income of $1,000 for the first three months, but this is only available for those who do not charge 20% more than the app’s recommended hourly rate.

Rental fees start at $5 to $9 per hour, and then every 15-minute use is charged at varying rates. Getaround provide drivers with insurance but takes a 40% cut off earnings. Customers need to return the cars where they first got it and have the fuel tank filled to the full.

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On its first day, Getaround has 30 cars in its network available for hire around the District Capital. Aside from Washington, Getaround is available in Portland and San Francisco. The app founders hope that more owners would rent out their vehicles and earn from them instead of paying for parking or making the cars gather dust.

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