Highway in Espoo, Finland

Espoo launches a shared zone car service

Espoo launches a shared zone car service

As of 10 March, drivers in the Finnish city of Espoo can use shared vehicles to reduce personal costs and pollution

The City of Espoo has collaborated with the shared car company Omago Oy to test out ‘zone cars’. This service will run from 10 March in Matinkylä as well as Southern and Northern Leppävaara. Later this month, it will also be available in the centre of Espoo.

What is a shared zone car and how does it work?

The service provides cars that can be shared and used by several people in certain zones. According to the municipality's website, one such vehicle replaces between 8 and 25 personal cars. In this way, it eliminates the costs that are incurred by owning and maintaining a vehicle. More importantly, it plays an important role in reducing pollution.

Commenting on these benefits, Project Manager Mari Päätalo said, “Shared cars are a part of the service package that aims to make mobility smooth, affordable and environmentally friendly.”

To use these vehicles, you must have a valid driving license and register as a shared zone car user at the Omago service. Once you do so, you will be able to book a car in advance (or use it immediately, if necessary). When you have completed your trip, you will be required to return the vehicle to the same area from which you began your drive.

The service is priced at 6-8 euros per hour or 30 euros per month for members. However, as the zone cars are currently being tested, there will be no membership fee in Espoo until May.

The goal is to make the service permanent

It is hoped that the pilot will be a success and that the cars will attract numerous users. If this occurs, the service can become permanent. “We hope that Espoo residents will take to the service so that we will be able to expand our services where there is sufficient damage,” commented the COO of Omago Oy, Iiro Permikangas.

If this becomes a permanent service, it will massively contribute to Espoo’s goal of becoming a carbon-neutral city by 2030.

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