Carsharing allows people to use vehicles on a short-term, hourly or daily, as-needed basis, paying only for the time they have the vehicle, the kilometres they drive, and a low administration charge.


Individuals and businesses join the Nanaimo CarShare Cooperative as members. Members of the non-profit cooperative own and drive a fleet of shared vehicles.


The Nanaimo CarShare Cooperative takes care of everything related to Coop vehicles. We arrange and pay for vehicle maintenance, repairs, insurance, gas, roadside assistance coverage, and cleaning. Members reserve blocks of time, as short as one hour, in the Coop’s shared vehicles through a Coop-managed online vehicle reservations system.


Members receive monthly invoices with usage charges assessed by the hour and kilometre, and low administration charges. If a member has expenses for gas or other automotive needs while using a vehicle, these are deducted from invoice totals. If the member doesn't drive a vehicle in any month, the member pays nothing.


Our vehicles are parked in designated hubs in places convenient to concentrations of our members. Each hub is within a 5 to 10 minute walk, bike, or mass transit ride of a "critical mass" of members' homes or workplaces.


As of October 2012, carsharing was operating in 27 countries and five continents, with an estimated 1,788,000 members sharing over43,550 vehiclesCarsharing can now be found in most large cities and many mid-sized cities in Canada and the United States and at some university campuses. As of January 1, 2013, 20 Canadian operators claimed 141,351 members and shared 3,432 vehicles. In the United States, 891,953 members shared 12,131 vehicles among 25 operators. In Mexico, 620 members shared 40 vehicles among one operator. Between January 2012 and January 2013, carsharing membership grew 24.1% in the United States and 53.4% in Canada, and carsharing fleets grew 23.6% in the United States and 35.9% in Canada. Based on research by Dr Susan Shaheen and Adam Cohen, Transportation Sustainability Research Center, University of California at Berkeley.