Members’ motivations for joining car clubs

Increasing the use of car clubs is an opportunity to reduce carbon emissions from transport in Scotland. This research analysed user survey data to better understand members’ motivations for joining car clubs. The findings may be useful in encouraging car club membership and in understanding the impact of car clubs on the transport system.

The research found that new members of car clubs can be separated according to those who previously owned a car and those who did not previously own a car.

New members who have previously owned a car are more commonly motivated to join a car club in order to spend less on transport and to reduce their level of car use. However, these members reported that their number of car trips increased after they joined carb clubs. Their use of light-rail transit and walking decreased over the same period.

New members who had not previously owned a car were more likely to be motivated to join car clubs in oder to access cars on a short term basis and to make trips that could not be made using alternative modes of transport. This group also increased the number of trips taken by car after joining, whilst reducing the number of trips taken by foot. This group, however, was more likely to use plug-in hybrid vehicles and electric vehicles than those who had previously owned a car.