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Industry Carsharing
Founded 2009 (2009)
San Francisco, CA
Founder Sam Zaid, Jessica Scorpio and Elliot Kroo
Headquarters San Francisco, CA
Area served
urban areas of San Francisco Bay Area, San Diego, Austin, Portland and Chicago
Services Carsharing
Slogan Empowering people to carshare everywhere

Getaround is an online car sharing or peer-to-peer carsharing service that allows drivers to rent cars from private car owners, and owners to rent out their cars for payment.[1] Owners set their rental prices and earn a 60% commission from their rental revenue.[2]

Getaround launched to the public in May 2011 at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference. To date, it has received $19 million USD in seed funding.[3] The company currently operates rentals in the San Francisco Bay Area, San Diego, Austin, Portland and Chicago.[4]

Similar to other car sharing services such as Zipcar, Getaround utilizes the economic principles of collaborative consumption. However, the peer-to-peer rental model doesn’t require the company to maintain a fleet of vehicles; rather, owners manage and maintain their own vehicles.

How It Works[edit]

Owners create an online profile for their car and set hourly, daily or weekly rates. They can determine who they want to rent to, when they want to rent, and set personal standards for the “quality” of the driver.[5] "Getaround’s founder Sam Zaid said the service uses a reputation management system with review and ratings so owners and renters can get a sense of who they’re dealing with."[6]

Getaround renters and owners conduct rental transactions online or through their mobile phones via a web browser, smart phone (iPhone) application or SMS messaging. Renters can request up to five cars at a time for a single rental period. The rental is made with the first owner to approve the request.

Owners can choose to install the "Getaround Carkit" as an alternative to the standard key exchange before and after a rental. Using GPS, WiFi and keyless remote technology, the carkit allows renters and owners to open and lock the car using a web-enabled mobile phone.[5]


Renters must be 19 years or older, with at least 2 years driving experience and a valid Facebook account (as an extra security layer). DMV records are required for a membership with Getaround, with certain ineligibility based on “incidents”, major violations and alcohol-related violations.[7]

Owners must provide their vehicle license place number, VIN vehicle identification number and proof of personal auto insurance. Vehicles must have less than 150,000 miles and be 1995 or newer. Additional restrictions exist for alterations, performance and commercial vehicles.[7]


Getaround provides comprehensive, collision and liability insurance coverage via a third-party insurer.[8] During an active rental period, this coverage supersedes the personal insurance policy maintained by the private car owner.

This type of custom insurance is a recent development. In January 2011, the California state legislature voted to pass Bill AB 1871, which allows car owners to receive temporary insurance when they are part of a personal car sharing community.[9]


Getaround was founded in the summer of 2009 by Sam Zaid, Jessica Scorpio and Elliot Kroo. Zaid and Scorpio were attendees of the inaugural Graduate Studies Program of Singularity University. In May 2011, Getaround won the TechCrunch Disrupt NYC competition[10] In February 2012, Getaround will begin serving Portland, Oregon with the aid of a $1.725 million Federal Highway Administration grant.[11]


External links[edit]