Hertfordshire plugs into new E-Car hire club
The University’s Environment and Sustainability team has partnered with Source East (the region’s electric vehicle recharging network) and E-Car Club (the UK’s first entirely electric pay-per-use car club) to run the scheme, which offers two Renault ZOEs and one Renault Fluence ZE for hire via a yearly membership programme.
12 staff members have already signed up to hire the E-Car vehicles for business use, with a target of 30 for the end of the year. The university hopes to have over 100 members signed up by 2015, with a mixed utilisation of business and private use.
The scheme is marketed to students as an affordable and cost effective way to enjoy the freedom of a car without the expense of campus parking permits and associated insurance costs. Standard membership costs £25 a year (£50 after 28 February), with rates starting at £5.50 for an hour’s rental.
Vehicles are accessed using the E-Car Club membership card, and are compatible with all Source East and Source London charging points, as well as the Electric Highway. Compatibility can be ensured if travelling further afield by contacting the E-Car Club helpline, which is available to customers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Instructions on how to use the charging points and a demonstration video are emailed to all new members; a system that Christopher Morris, development director of E-Car, said meant only one in ten customers required further assistance understanding how to use the new technology.
Speaking at the launch of the E-Car Club, Dr. Stephen Boffey, pro vice-chancellor for regional affairs at the University of Hertfordshire, said: ‘The University is always looking at ways to improve the travel choices for staff, students and the local community and we are proud to be the first university to launch an electric car club.
‘We hope that by offering access to a low carbon form of transport, we can work together to reduce the cost and environmental impact of each journey undertaken.’
Anyone over the age of 19 can register for E-Car membership and all registrations before 28 February 2014 will receive a 50% discount on the membership fee and one hour free driving credit using the following promotional code: ‘UHECAR114’. For more information, visit www.e-carclub.org.