rideshareDon’t have a car, want a car or need a car?    As absurd as the last one may sound,  it may well be possible to survive, if not thrive, without a car in San Diego County.     Over the past few years, a number of alternative transport companies (also called “transportation network companies or TNCs) have driven into San Diego:  Car2Go, Lyft, and UberX. Each have pros and cons.   Here’s a quick synopsis:

 

 

Car2Go
Pros:    Large fleet  (380 cars)
All electric cars
Membership  ($35 per year)
Coverage in Point Loma, Midway, Mission Valley, College Area & Chula Vista.   Car2Go debuted in San Diego in 2011 and in its first two years has grown to a 380-car fleet of all-electric vehicles serving more than 12,000 members.  According to Voice of San Diego, users check out white and blue cars by waving a membership card over a space on a car’s windshield. A mobile app helps locate the cars, which users can use for as long as they want and park them in nearly any parking space without worrying about tolls or time constraints.

Cons:   Not cheap.   Charge:  41 cents a minute or $14.99 an hour.

Lyft
Pros:    Cars have pink mustaches.
Can access cars using smart phone app
Can track progress of the e-hail in real time.
Charged a standard minimum charge but can tip the drivers if you like the service.
Covers most of central San Diego City

Cons:    Prices vary, depending upon time of day that the car is hailed.
Not cheap for long-distance trips.   Charge $1.75 per mile and $.25 per minute.  Also has pickup and cancellation fees.

UberX
Pros:    Cars are large (often are black towncars)
Can be picked up after requesting a car.
Covers most all of San Diego County.  Uber expanded to San Diego in the summer of 2012, its 10th U.S. city at the time

Cons:   Possibly more expensive than taxis.  There are three service levels, based on the driver’s car: a typical sedan, a town car or a large SUV, like an Escalade. The base fares range from $2.50 to $15, with per-mile or per-minute charges tacked on top, just like a taxi.Base fares range from $2.50 to $15, with per-mile or per-minute charges tacked on top, just like a taxi.   Also has cancellation fees and minimum fares.
Prices vary, depending upon time of day that the car is hailed.
Drivers are not professional; often are self-selected based upon minimum requirements that you are over 23,  own a working four-door car made after 2000, and have a smartphone.