This article was published in 2011, in Newsletter 94.

 Joseph Seal-Driver explains the Streetcar scheme

No matter how much Cambridge residents love bikes, there are those times when you just need a car. Occasionally, pedal power just cannot go the distance, or carry a load that would stretch the most robust legs or forgiving of panniers.

That’s why so many Cambridge cyclists use Streetcar, the pay-as-you-go car club. With twenty-three Streetcars in Cambridge, and over 1,600 nationwide, it is the perfect complement to your bicycle.

Not only does Streetcar take the hassle out of owning a car, but if you only use a car a couple of times a week then Streetcar might save you a lot of money. Additionally, for those environmentally- focused, car clubs can help reduce the number of cars in Cambridge. On average, one Streetcar takes an average of twenty privately-owned cars off the roads in the UK, because members often sell (or don’t replace) a car when they join. Streetcar has also found that members choose to drive a car 68% less after joining Streetcar than before, as they make better use of public transport and think much harder about their transport options according to what they need to achieve and the cost associated with that decision.

So how does it work?

After becoming a member of our club, you can reserve any Streetcar, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, over the phone, internet or by mobile. Once you have made your booking, simply wander up to the car, swipe your smartcard, enter your pin and drive away. When you are done, return the Streetcar to its bay, swipe your smartcard again to lock it and walk away.

Usage is charged in thirty-minute units, at a typical rate of £5.95 per hour. You can book a car for as little as half an hour or for up to three months. You don’t need to worry about tax, insurance, fuel or depreciation either as this is all included in the price.

To help celebrate the recent introduction of Streetcar in Cambridge, Streetcar is offering £20 worth of driving credit to get you going when you become a member. Just visit or call 0845 6448745 to find out more.