Car-Sharing Business Expanding in Croatia

Total Croatia News

Company says its offer is much cheaper than taxi services.

You turn on your smartphone, download a free app, register, find a car on a map, unlock it with the phone, drive it, and then leave it where you park. And you do not have to buy the car, pay for repairs, spend money on fuel, registration or insurance. You pay only as much as you actually use it. It is a well-known car-sharing model, increasingly popular throughout the world. In Vienna, as many as 100,000 people use about 1,300 such cars, reports Jutarnji List on October 5, 2016.

And now, car sharing has arrived to Croatia as well. Since the end of June, Spin City, the only company offering this concept in Croatia, has deployed a fleet of 30 cars on the streets of Zagreb. “The results are better than what we expected, although the concept is brand new here”, said Matija Krznar, the managing director of the company.

Spin City has 30 VW Up cars, ten with electric engines and 20 with regular gasoline engines. In the first 90 days, since the official launch, their service has been used by 570 drivers and each week the number of users is growing by 10 to 15 percent. Average car has one ride a day for 30 minutes, 35 percent of users are regular clients who use their cars daily, 10 percent of people hire their cars 5 to 10 times a month, while the rest are drivers who hire them about three times a month.

“For the fleet to be fully cost-effective, each car must be in use eight percent of the time. We are now at 4 percent after only three months, and if such a steep increase in the number of drivers continues, we will reach that threshold in a few months”, said Krznar. The total investment amounted to about 3.3 million kuna, of which the largest part went to leasing the cars, and the rest to development of application and operating system.

The service costs between 1.5 to 2 kuna per minute of ride, depending on the service package which the user chooses. Spin City zone extends from Podsused to the west, to the Supernova shopping centre to the south, and to Ikea to the east. They say they are cheaper than traditional taxi companies by around 35 percent.

A user can become anyone who is older than 18 years and has held a driving license for at least one year. Once users register, they pay a one-time membership fee of 150 kuna, which includes 50 minutes of free drive and a card which can be used to open a car when a smartphone is not available. The user then goes to a VIP Centre, where they hand over a copy of their driving license and ID card. And then they can start driving. The app shows where the car closest to the user is parked (average distance is eight minutes on foot). The driver comes to the car, unlocks it using a smartphone and start to drive.

“Initial experience shows us that people use our cars to drive to work or when they need to go shopping. They are also used on weekends for short trips, since the cars can be used anywhere in Croatia, provided they are returned to Zagreb, but there is a difference – parking in Zagreb is free, while in other towns they have to pay for it themselves”, said Krznar. “Spin City offers you a car only when you need it, without the costs of fuel or electricity, without insurance or parking fees. Our goal is to participate in a faster, more efficient, economically viable and environmentally friendly urban transport”, concluded Krznar.


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