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Blablacar drives into the UK

A new travel website has been launched in the UK for people looking to share road trips – and its called BlablaCar. It saves drivers and passengers money, reduces CO2 emissions and is generally a sociable way of travelling so a real winner!  As thousands of people head off to festivals in the UK with space for more people left in their car or van, the amount of wasted energy and money which could be saved is “phenomenal” says Blablacar.

Blablacar has already had big success in Europe (over a million people have shared more than five million trips and saved up to 200,000 tonnes of CO2) and you can check out the website  www.blablacar.com (it’s free to sign up!).  Its easy to understand why – and it extends beyond just festivals. With petrol prices continuing to soar to all time highs, drivers can now share their travel costs by inviting passengers to join them, saving significant costs on each journey. The new site is provided by a French company, Comuto, and the service is known as Covoiturage.fr in France. It  has been a real success amongst drivers and passengers alike who are often frustrated at disruptions to air and rail transport and hard hit by increasing petrol prices and rising public transport costs – or who fancy doing something a bit more green.  The site, founded in 2006, is growing by over 50,000 users per month, not only saving €100m since 2009 but also over 200,000 tons of CO2 – hooray and hooray again!

To use the service, drivers post details of their trip and a suggested price, typically a proportionate contribution. Potential passengers searching for a specific trip then choose whether or not this fits with what they want to pay. There is lots of sensible advice on the site to make sure things go smoothly.

Blablacar say that they have demonstrated the significant cost savings for both drivers and passengers who headed to this years already legendary Glastonbury Festival.

  • When travelling from London, drivers could save 64 percent of the overall cost (equivalent to 31.5 pints of beer/cider, 25 burgers or 264 toilet rolls)
  • Passengers travelling from London could save 29 percent on the cost of a train ticket (equivalent to 4.25 pints of beer/cider, 3.4 burgers or 36 toilet rolls)
  • When travelling from Manchester, drivers could save 74 percent of the overall cost (equivalent to 46.5 pints of beer/cider, 37.2 burgers or 391.5 toilet rolls)
  • Passengers travelling from Manchester could save 45 percent on the cost of a train ticket (equivalent to 12.7 pints of beer/cider, 10.2 burgers or 107.5 toilet rolls

Sources:

Festival ticket pricing see  http://www.festivalbusiness.co.uk/2011/06/ticket-prices-rise-dramatically-since.html

Petrol price increases see  http://www.theaa.com/motoring_advice/fuel/index.html

Car occupancy:  from Department For Transport statistics 2009 / Rail fare increases see  : http://www.atoc.org

Beer/cider prices – avg. £4 per pint, burger – avg. £5 each, toilet roll £1.90 for 4 (from Tesco prices)

Car running costs from  http://www.theaa.com/motoring_advice/running_costs/petrol2011.pdf

Cheapest rail fares from  www.nationalrail.co.uk 14 June 2011.

So check out Blablacar! www.blablacar.com