Would you prefer an expensive car or a cheap ride?
Why even own a car when Avant2Go can help you go on a trip or run your errands without any complications, for a mere few euros?
Is owning a car even worth it? That is the question on the minds of more and more Slovenians, even though the growing number of mobility solutions makes the answer painfully simple. No, it's not worth it! Despite their polished splendour, for most people, cars are an entirely unnecessary expense.
Once we consider the matter rationally, we find that means of transport that are not being used 90 percent of the time, and for which Slovenians pay hundreds of euros each month, simply do not outweigh the investment, and the real cost is significantly higher once we include the constant decrease in the vehicle’s value, and other unforeseen expenses.
It’s no wonder that the future-oriented professionals are replacing the word car with the word mobility, and instead of ownership, they are beginning to talk about services. Plenty of them are foreseeing a steep growth in subscription and sharing models, which are predicted to win over more than a tenth of drivers in the developed world by 2025. The Slovenian company Avant2Go is, in a way, a combination of the two, even though they place themselves in the sharing economy.
Avant2Go users pay as they go for the vehicles; a minute during the day will cost between 5 to 10 cents, while driving at night is a cent or two per minute.
Their service works via a smartphone app of the same name, which works on Android and iOS. Avant2Go users can reserve an electric vehicle by picking their desired location – there are currently 62, of which 46 are in Ljubljana, seven are in Maribor, and four each in Kranj and Murska Sobota, with an additional one at the Jože Pučnik airport in Ljubljana – and simply unlock the car they selected. There are a few options to choose from, from a two-seater or a four-seater Smart ED, to a Renault ZOE, Nissan Leaf, Volkswagen Golf, as well as their flagship car, the BMW i3.
But before they get to do that, all Avant2Go customers must register. To enter the world of electric car sharing, future users must pass a short, about an hour-long training, which will help them learn how the system works, and most importantly, how to use all the electric vehicles in the fleet. The registration and training cost 59 euros, but Avant2Go will occasionally offer special deals; during the last winter holidays, the price to enter their sharing system was just 19 euros.
There are no additional costs, the users pay to use their vehicles as they go – in kilometres and minutes. The prices range between five and ten cents per minute of use during daytime, and between one to two cents per minute during the night. Additionally, the drivers pay 20 to 30 cents per travelled kilometre.
»Our mission is to improve the quality of life and to create advanced solutions of sustainable mobility. In that, we follow the vision of a clean, simple, efficient, and accessible mobility, presented as a service that we need, and that we pay for only when we need it«, was written in the annual report of Avant Car, as part of which Avant2Go operates.
Their business model is therefore not a classic subscription story, since the customers pay as they go and not in the form of regular, monthly or yearly lump sums.
The registration is a one-off cost that does not have to be extended each year. The insurance, however, is a different matter. With an annual payment of 38 euros, users can lower their damage waiver from 300 to 100 euros, and get rid of it completely for 88 euros a year, which in practice means that if they have an accident, it will cost them nothing, since the insurance company will offer full coverage.
Avant2Go believes that individuals and companies can halve their mobility expenses by using their services.
Each year, Avant2Go is becoming increasingly more popular with Slovenian drivers, who have so far travelled over three million kilometres in its electric vehicles. »The service price includes registration, insurance, fuel, maintenance, winter tyres, the motorway vignette, and more. Car sharing can therefore decrease the mobility costs of an individual or a company by over 50 percent«, is what Avant2Go believes.
If their fleet continues to grow, and if their service continues to become more popular, they would be willing to consider a car sharing subscription model where the drivers paid fixed monthly sums for access to electric mobility. They’d therefore be willing to consider life per month in state-of-the-art electric vehicles.