New car rental program hits UW-River Falls - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

New car rental program hits UW-River Falls

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River Falls (WQOW)- A new program at UW-River Falls may not give car sales a boost.  But there are different benefits in mind.     

Students who sign up get a membership card and can reserve a block of time online to use a rental car.  When it's their turn, they swipe their card on the car and they are good to go.

"The best part about it is that you're using it when you actually need it," smiles Enterprise WeCar Account Manager Katie Wegner.

Enterprise and the university recently reached a deal to bring WeCars to campus.  Students who sign up can go online to reserve the cars when they need to hit the road.

"It's a member-based program," Wegner explains.  "They would make a reservation online.  The two cars that we have at UW-River Falls are parked in the same spot all the time.  They would access the car with their membership card; use the car for the time that they reserved and then return it back to the same spot."

A yearly membership costs $25 annually plus about $9 an hour when you are actually using the car and that price includes gas. Enterprise says the school jumped at the chance to bring WeCar to campus.

"There's not always the option for students to bring a car on campus; especially first-year students, and it's not always an affordable option," Wegner points out.

"One WeCar will service many students," explains UW-River Falls Sustainability Coordinator Jerry Waller.  "We'll save on the infrastructure for parking as well as providing a great service for students who can't afford or choose not to bring a car to campus."

"It makes sense because a lot of people like me, I didn't bring my car because I didn't want to pay for the parking pass and I don't live that far away," says Chad Retterath, a freshman at UW-River Falls.

"They're always searching for ways to increase the sustainability on their campus and this was just a perfect opportunity for them to reduce congestion, get some more cars off the road and to be more efficient with it," Wegner says.

UW-River Falls only has two WeCars available for rental right now.  But the university says it will add more cars when the program becomes more popular. If you are interested in signing up, go to WeCar.com.

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