Zipcar Adds No-Fee Membership Option in Canada

This week, Avis announced the acquisition of Zipcar for $500 million.

Now the Avis-owned car rental company is piloting a no-fee membership option in Toronto and Vancouver, effective today. Dubbed the “Access Plan,” this pilot project carries on annual driving fee.

The existing “Extra Value” plan also doesn’t charge an annual fee, but does require a minium of $50 in driving per month. So what’s the Access Plan’s catch? There’s two, actually. First, it offers the same hourly and daily rates in the “Everything” plan. Second, drivers are resricted to certain availability times.

The Access Plan only allows driving Monday through Friday – no weekends. It’s the time when supply is high and demand is low. The idea is to lure in new members who aren’t ready to commit to an annual fee or a minimum driving amount.

“As the world’s largest car sharing network, it is natural for us to continue to evolve our service to meet a broader array of consumer needs,” said Scott Griffith, chairman and CEO of Zipcar. “This new pilot plan is a key step in that direction. The Access Plan offers full entry to our entire network during weekdays without committing to an annual fee. This new plan also gives renewing Zipsters a new option if they are infrequent drivers but prefer to keep their membership active without an annual fee, just-in-case.”