Autodelen.net: ‘One-third more shared cars in one year in Flanders’

The number of shared cars has increased significantly in the past year. By the end of 2023, Flanders had 4,159 shared cars, or 31.5% more than the year before. Among them are all types of shared cars: free-floating, roundtrip, and individually shared cars.

According to the car-sharing website Autodelen.net’s annual report, you can find shared cars in 225 of 300 (75%) Flemish cities and municipalities today.

Jeffrey Matthijs, director of Autodelen.net: “Flanders was already a top region in the field of car sharing, and this year, is making another big leap forward through the Local Energy and Climate Pact of Flanders, which encourages local authorities to offer at least two shared cars per 1,000 inhabitants by 2030. Local authorities are convinced that car sharing is good for public spaces, the environment, and the modal shift.”

11% more users

In 2023, there were 38,347 active users of roundtrip and private car sharing in Flanders. That is 11% more than last year. These users made at least one trip with a shared car between December 1st, 2022 and December 1st, 2023.

The users of free-floating car sharing (and data from Wallonia and Brussels) are not included in these figures because Autodelen.net did not receive data from the free-floating car-sharing providers. The actual number of active car sharers is, therefore, much higher. And according to the organization, car sharing will only increase. Figures will rise because the offer has been extended.

‘Strong competition’

However, there was also less good news. Partago, a pioneer in cooperative electric car sharing, disappeared, and several free-floating car-sharing providers left cities such as Ghent, Mechelen, Leuven, and Lier.

On the one hand, this is due to strong competition; on the other hand, we also see a consolidation of the market,” Jeffrey Matthijs explains. After testing and exploration, providers return to the markets where they can achieve an economically viable model.”

Unlike roundtrip providers, such as Cambio, free-floating operators must immediately provide many vehicles without being confident that demand is high enough. “It’s a business model with many challenges,” the Autodelen.net director concludes.

Some remarkable conclusions

• In just over a year, 48 new municipalities have started car sharing.

• A roundtrip shared car is used on average 27% of the time. That’s much higher than the average Belgian private car, used 2% of the time.

The average reservation with a roundtrip shared car lasted approximately 7 hours and 14 minutes in 2023. An average of 63 kilometers is covered during a trip.

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