Zipcars: A student resource overlooked

Bret Belden

By Jennifer DeLucia, Contributing Writer

Students all over campus pass by the Whittemore Center or Paul College daily. What many students tend to overlook are the tiny little green signs and green parking spots that live there permanently. These signs represent Zipcars, which are now available on over 200 campuses in North America.

Sophomore Kaitlyn Ouellette said, “I’ve heard of Zipcars, but I never knew they were here on campus.”

Zipcar has been established since 2009 and is still a relatively new company. These cars are available for students, faculty, staff or even community members here in the Durham area. The cars can ultimately be used to take you anywhere you need to go, whether it is to the grocery store, an internship or even just a drive.

According to Zipcar’s website, with access to a computer and being 18 years or older, one could register for the program in minutes. With a discounted joining fee of $25 for UNH members, students can pay right online.

After creating an account, the Zipcar company will send you your own personalized Zip Card — after checking your driving record, of course. Then all that’s left to do is reserve a car for a specific day and time.

With a total of three cars here on campus, it’s relatively easy to get somewhere. With two cars located on Depot Road, which is conveniently located next to the train station, and the other car in front of Paul College on Garrison Road, the cars are easily accessible.

Sophomore Brianna Marand doesn’t know much about the Zipcar program.

“I have no idea what they cost, but I do know you can rent them for the day,” Marand said.

The annual cost for the car is $7.50 an hour, or $70 to reserve for the day. When putting the cost into perspective it seems cheap daily, but some students think otherwise.

“They’re just too expensive,” junior Emeric Szep said. He had heard about the program on campus but chooses not to use them.

Student Allie Chieffalo lives on campus but does not have a car here. Because of an internship she has for her education course, she had to register for Zipcar. She stated that the cars are very convenient for students in situations like hers.

“I use the Zipcar at least twice a week; I would recommend it to other students,” she said.

Some students argue that regardless of cost, Zipcars are a good aspect of our community. Some believe that the cars are a great resource and can benefit a lot of people.

“Zipcars allow the student body to fully utilize the surrounding areas of the seacoast,” sophomore Jimmy Rick said. “This gives students the ability to enjoy the prime location of this campus.”