Carsharing Entices Metro Vancouverites to Sell Their Cars

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Millennials decidedly more likely to embrace benefits of carsharing than older residents

Vancouver, BC – Growing exposure to carsharing in recent years is changing the perceptions of Metro Vancouver drivers, who may be considering selling their personal vehicles in favour of carsharing, according to a new Insights West poll conducted in partnership with Modo, Vancouver’s first and only carsharing co-operative.

In the online survey of a representative sample, 13 per cent of Metro Vancouverites say they have relied on carsharing to get around the region over the past year—a proportion that reaches 22 per cent among Millennials (residents aged 18-to-34). With Millennials feeling the financial squeeze in an increasingly expensive region, and with 70 per cent agreeing that carsharing is “an attractive option for people in my age group”, carsharing among this demographic is expected to rise sharply.

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Even Metro Vancouverites who have not yet tried carsharing believe it offers significant benefits, with two thirds (65%) perceiving it as “less hassle than owning a car” and a majority citing the importance of savings from fuel costs (62%) and vehicle maintenance (57%). Half of Metro Vancouverites also say carsharing reduces traffic and congestion (49%) and provides easy access to parking (also 49%); which is a positive trend in a region striving to be seen as green, sustainable and most importantly, livable.

“Our members love that we offer them the flexibility to enjoy a less car dependent lifestyle. They can drive one of our 450 different Modos – from sports cars to SUVs – when they need, to without being tied down financially to owning and maintaining a private vehicle,” says Selena McLachlan, Director of Marketing & Business Development at Modo.

McLachlan says that it’s no surprise that the cost savings of carsharing are a highly ranked benefit among the general public. The survey found that seven-in-ten Metro Vancouverites (72%) say they would rather spend their money on other things than car maintenance.

“With the average cost of car ownership hovering around $9,000 per year, it’s easy to see why so many people are making the switch to carsharing and why we’ve experienced steady growth in our membership for the last nearly twenty years. For many of our 15,000 members, the decision to carshare is simply one of pragmatism,” comments McLachlan.

According to the survey, a majority of Metro Vancouver car owners (57%) acknowledge that the benefits of carsharing would make them contemplate selling their car, including 85% of Millennials and 55% of Generation Xers. Savings from vehicle maintenance (37%) and fuel costs (34%) are the most attractive features of carsharing among car owners who would consider shedding their vehicle.

“Carsharing is definitely growing across Metro Vancouver and we’re seeing that acquaintance with its benefits is actually impacting attitudes towards personal vehicle ownership,” says Mario Canseco, Vice President, Public Affairs, at Insights West. “Most Metro Vancouverites younger than 55 are pondering whether it is a good time to vacate the garage and start carsharing.”

As part of the study, a separate survey was conducted with a sample of Modo members, which shows that they are already experiencing the benefits that other Metro Vancouver car owners (who are not yet carsharing) are attracted to, with more than four-in-five saying that saving on vehicle maintenance is important to them (84%) and that carsharing is “less hassle than owning a car” (82%). Add this to their ability to conveniently book a different kind of Modo for every type of trip – from a sporty Fiat Abarth to a practical Honda CRV – in advance or on the fly, the case for signing up as a member becomes even more compelling.

It’s clear that carsharing is changing the transportation landscape in the region and that many residents are seeing this as a positive. Across Metro Vancouver, just under half of residents (47%) consider carsharing as an important part of their city’s transportation choices.

About Modo:

Modo provides convenient, reliable and affordable access to the most diverse fleet of shared vehicles across the Lower Mainland and Victoria. With over 450 cars serving more than 15,000 individual and 400 business members, Modo affords you all the benefits of having a car, without all the hassles and expense of owning one (or two). To learn more about Modo and to become a member, please visit: www.modo.coop.

About Insights West:

Insights West is a progressive, Western-based, full-service marketing research company. It exists to serve the market with insights-driven research solutions and interpretive analysis through leading-edge tools, normative databases, and senior-level expertise across a broad range of public and private sector organizations. Insights West is based in Vancouver and Calgary.

About this release:

Results are based on an online study conducted from January 25 to January 28, 2016, among 812 adult residents of British Columbia, and an online study conducted from February 12 to February 22, 2016, among 537 Modo members. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.5 percentage points for the sample of British Columbians and +/- 4.0 percentage points for the sample of Modo members. Click to view the detailed data tabulations.

For further information, please contact:

Selena McLachlan
Director of Marketing, Modo
778-989-6085
selena.mclachlan@modo.coop

Mario Canseco
Vice President, Public Affairs, Insights West
778-929-0490
mariocanseco@insightswest.com

 

Photograph: Kenny Louie