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Students walk past the new Zipcars, which are parked in the Mendenhall Student Center lot when not in use by ECU students, faculty or staff members who have signed up for the car-sharing service.

ECU partners with Zipcar to offer 24/7 transportation option

GREENVILLE, N.C.   (Sept. 21, 2010)   —   Getting around town just got easier for East Carolina University students who don’t own a car or have one on campus.

ECU is partnering with Zipcar to provide the campus with access to car-sharing service.  The partnership provides students, faculty, and staff members, ages 18 and older, with access to a convenient and cost-efficient transportation alternative – 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Zipcar is touted as an environmentally friendly transportation alternative. Every Zipcar takes 15 to 20 privately owned vehicles off the road. Gas, 180 miles per day, insurance, reserved parking spots and roadside assistance are included in the hourly and daily Zipcar rates. Cars can be reserved for as short as an hour or for up to four days. Rates on all ECU vehicles start as low as $8 per hour and $66 per day (24 hours).

The annual membership fee for anyone affiliated with ECU is $35 and applicants receive $35 worth of free driving credit applied towards their first month of driving. The annual membership fee is waived for resident advisors, orientation leaders and ECU departments for business driving. Students, faculty and staff can join at

“We are always searching for ways to help our students save money and the environment, and Zipcar is a big part of the solution,” said Bill Koch, associate vice chancellor of Environmental Health and Campus Safety at ECU. “Now our school community has a hassle free way to run errands, attend meetings, or get away for the weekend, while also doing its part in helping us reduce our carbon footprint.”

ECU has two Zipcars, which are located on campus in the Mendenhall Student Center parking lot. The ECU Zipcar member holds their Zipcar card over the sensor which unlocks the reserved car’s doors. Zipcar even offers an iPhone app that will honk the car’s horn to locate it and unlock the door for members.

“With the state of the economy in flux, it’s great to know that ECU will offer its students the benefits of convenience and cost-savings that Zipcar members at universities across North America and the UK have already experienced,” Matthew Malloy, vice president of global university operations at Zipcar.

Zipcar has established partnerships with more than 200 universities, including the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Florida and University of Virginia. Zipcar uses a network of local vendors to service and clean its fleet.  At ECU, the first Zipcars in use are a Toyota Prius Hybrid and a Scion XB.

For more information, including how to enroll in Zipcar at ECU, visit

Zipcar registered users access the vehicles by holding their Zipcard over the sensor to unlock the reserved car's doors.
Zipcar registered users access the vehicles by holding their Zipcard over the sensor to unlock the reserved car's doors.