Carsharing in France: Past, present and future

Carsharing schemes are pay-as-you drive clubs that offer members access to a vehicle without ownership. Beneficial to users because they can increase access to cars for non car owners, access to a wide range of vehicle types and cost savings in some cases, they are also attractive to policy makers because they can enhance mobility for the less well off while cutting car use and resulting environmental and economic impacts. Yet while carsharing schemes have become relatively popular in some countries such as Switzerland, the Netherlands, Canada and the USA since the late 1980s, there was very little activity that occurred in France until relatively recently. The purpose of this paper then, is to look at how carsharing has developed in France so far, and how it is likely to evolve in the future.