Experiences of Norwich Car Club

Here are a couple of the vehicles available to David in Norwich. David sometimes uses the van to take stuff to recycling.

David from Norwich

I'm a member of Norfolk Car Club, which is run by Co-wheels.

I joined the Norfolk Car Club about 3 years ago when I retired from full time working - I still needed to travel for work occasionally but much less. We were a two-car family but gave the small car I had been using to one of my children and joined the Car Club instead. I walk or cycle or use public transport when convenient but when it isn't and my wife needs our car for something else I can use a club car instead. Now I am fully retired I only use a club car about once a month. For example I will hire the van if I want to take a lot of stuff to the recycling centre.

Fortunately, where I live there are several car club bays within half a mile of my home, which is incredibly convenient and gives me a good choice of vehicles to hire when I need one. I 've always managed to get a car even at short notice. The vehicles are well maintained and clean - even the van!

Booking is online, easy and has been very reliable. I normally use my home computer but you can use a smart phone. As a member of Co-wheels I can use any of their cars across the country. I haven't needed to but can imagine that could be useful for some people.

Being a member of the car club is much cheaper than keeping a second car. There is a joining fee and a 5 minimum monthly spend. Insurance is included with no worry about paying for petrol. So for example, when I recently hired a van for an hour my whole cost that month, including the mileage fee, was only 6.79.

A lot of the streets here in Norwich are very narrow and totally clogged with cars. It is a real problem trying to find a place to park. Car clubs help to reduce number of cars competing for space which has to be a good thing. Also they're introducing hybrid cars into the city, which will help to reduce pollution. Electric cars would be even better but they need charging points, of course. Co- wheels are providing electric cars in other areas of the country so it would be good if electric cars were available in Norwich before too long.

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