GetAround is a peer-to-peer car rental service that’s badly reviewed by both owners and renters
Expected pay: You set it
Commissions & fees: 40%, plus a $99 “connect” fee; and $20 monthly device fees
Requirements: A vehicle that’s less than 10 years old and that has less than 125,000 miles on the odometer
GetAround is a peer-to-peer car rental site that allows you to rent out your unused vehicle. You list the car and set prices for hourly, daily, weekly or monthly rates. GetAround also provides an umbrella policy, in case your car is damaged and isn’t covered by your own insurance.
But to list a car on this site, you must pay $99 up front to put GetAround software in your car. This software is supposed to allow your car to operate without a key. That gives owners the ability to leave a car at a remote site, where the renter can pick it up, without ever meeting the renter. Likewise, the renter can drop off the car without the owner being there to receive it.
This sounds convenient, but it’s not a great idea. Owners complain this allows cars to be returned with undeclared damage. Renters claim this allows cars to be rented out when they’re filthy and have mechanical problems. Additionally, some vehicle owners maintain the software damaged their cars and GetAround does nothing to compensate them for the loss.
Theoretically, all owners pay on this site is the $99 device “connection” fee, plus a monthly fee of $20 to maintain it.
However, GetAround charges a variety of fees to renters. There’s a 40% commission; a booking fee; a license fee; another fee charged to renters who are under the age of 25.
If renters drive more than 200 miles a day, they get hit with mileage fees. Both hosts and guests are potentially subject to cancelation fees; damage fees; cleaning fees and service fees. (You can see the full list of fees here.)
However, what’s more noteworthy about GetAround is the astounding number of complaints about the service filed with both the Better Business Bureau and SiteJabber.
That vast majority of complaints are from renters. Their gripes range from last-minute cancellations to car problems and unjustified fees. One renter said the car he rented was seized because it had been stollen. Another renter said the car was unregistered and uninsured. Other complaints: the car was filthy; had a bad odor; broke down within blocks of pickup.
But owners aren’t in love with GetAround either.
Our advice: Don’t rent out your car, unless it is truly a spare vehicle that you have no near-term plans to use.
If that’s the case, you’re better off renting through Turo. Turo’s fees are lower; it requires no software; and both drivers and vehicle owners are enthusiastic about their experiences. It’s our top recommendation in the car rental space.
What car owners say (from SiteJabber):
Getaround is an absolutely horrible company. If you care about your car, do not use this “service.” If you lend your car out through this service, don’t be surprised if you end up with nothing. Utterly despicable company.
“Horrible, horrible experience. They made sign up very easy. But everything after that was awful. I started getting requests for 1-2 hour rides worth $10 or less, which I couldn’t deny unless I contacted the driver directly. I was then emailed about how I will start getting charged for their service in a few weeks. WHAT SERVICE?
Car won’t start
“…Then the worst part happened. I head to my car to drive to work and it WON’T START. It’s less than a year old and it won’t start. I called my roadside service company to come jump my car but a jump didn’t work. A battery test shows the battery is in good health. I then had to call a tow company to come tow my car to my service center who opens up my car to find out that what GetAround had installed into my car had completely destroyed the wiring.
Furious, I call them to be told: “Oh yeah, sometimes that happens. It’s in the FAQ went sent you, did you read that?” OH OK SO NOW ITS MY FAULT MY CAR WONT START? COOL I spent an entire day paying for a tow and service on my car, which they will not reimburse me for. I also lost a full day of work because of it. Unreal.
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