Getaround CarKit is an iPhone app with an optional car device that installs in the automobile. It lets you rent out your car and make money doing so. It’s currently available only in San Francisco and San Diego, but it will soon expand to more cities. And Getaround may offer the car kit for sale through car electronics retailers in the future.
Getaround Carkit wants to put to better use the 250 million vehicles in the U.S., many of which are used only a couple of hours a day.
A car owner can earn over $1,000 a year if he rents his car out for an hour a day. He can earn $5,000 a year if he rents the car out 20 hours a week.
Owners have the ability to approve or disapprove each rental request on an individual basis.
And cars are insured by Getaround and Berkshire Hathaway, so you are covered in an accident and for theft.
The app won the TechCrunch Disrupt contest last week.
You don’t need the car kit to use the app. But with the kit, owners can remote unlock and lock the car doors. And the kit allows GPS tracking of the vehicle. Sound familiar?
Getaround said it is supplying the “mini Lojack” itself. The device is free to the first 500 users. And Getaround pays for the installation. Hmm…
Avery Lewis, product manager, said the company is considering selling the kit plus app through car audio dealers but it’s not sure yet. “It is essentially a cheaper Lojack, so we may talk to installers. We haven’t made a decision yet,” he said.
If you don’t have the car kit installed then the owner and renter must exchange car keys.
Cars may rent from $3-15 an hour. By the day, the fee is $15 to $60. And Getaround takes 40 percent. The average car takes in $8 an hour and the owner gets $4.80 after commission. –Amy Gilroy and Bill D.