Car sharing is a different type of car rental, where registered program members may rent cars for short periods of time, often by the hour. This type of rental operation benefits
customers who make only occasional use of a vehicle, as well as others who would like occasional access to a vehicle of a different type than the one that they use day-to-day.
This type of program is becoming more and more popular with companies that rent cars frequently, but on a short-term basis, and with large universities (for their employees and students).
It's different from a traditional car rental in several ways:
Getting a vehicle is not limited by office hours, which is the case with traditional car rentals.
Users must be members of a specific program and will have to be pre-approved to drive (background driving checks will be performed and a payment process will be pre-established)
Vehicles are generally distributed throughout the area that is services, and often located in places that are easily accessible by public transport. With traditional car rental, the fleet is contained to one (or perhaps more) locations in a give city.
The reservation, pickup, and return process are all self-service; usually done on a members-only website. With traditional car rental you must generally deal with an employee (at the counter or at pickup) to finalize your rental car contract
Insurance and fuel costs are often included in the rates. Members are usually responsible for cleaning cars for the next user, and many services provide gas cards so drivers can refill tanks that get low. With traditional car rental, insurance and fuel costs are not included in the price