You can now set your car’s rates from your dashboard : head to the “My Car’s Rates” section.
Your car's rate can be between $4 - $20 an hour and $20 - $100 a day. All trips will be billed at the rates that were in force at the time the booking was made. So if a Borrower books a trip and then you change the rates, this won't affect the pricing for their trip.
We’re keen for Owners to experiment and give us feedback on this feature. If you’re wondering what to do with your new power, here are some ideas to try.
(One thing to note: if your income is guaranteed, you’ll need to contact us before changing your rates as this may void the guarantee).
1: Adjust the ratio of hourly and daily rates to encourage the type of bookings you prefer.
Want to avoid people booking your car for a long period? Try setting the daily rate to be much higher than the hourly rate. If you don’t want people to take your car for a long time, this may be a more effective method than blocking it out for a short time each day.
Want to reduce the number of short bookings? Make the hourly rate higher and the daily rate lower. Note that this may encourage people to keep your car sitting around even if they’re not driving it (so you won’t get much per-kilometre income).
2: Make your car more competitive with other local vehicles
Having more cars in your area actually increases bookings overall, because each new car raises awareness and makes the network more attractive for Borrowers to join.
If there are a number of other cars nearby, you could look at their rates and consider adjusting your pricing to be more attractive. If you see that similar vehicles to yours are getting booked out while yours still has an empty dance card, consider lowering your price to see if that increases your bookings.
The minimum hourly rate is $4 and the minimum daily rate is $20. Of course, there are many other factors that borrowers look at - like the condition of your car; its availability, how close it is to their house and what features it has - so don’t feel like you need to set your rates rock-bottom to stay competitive.
3: Experiment with higher prices for busy periods
We’ve found that demand varies over the week and over the year.
Weekends are always busier than weekdays, and long weekends and holidays are even busier than normal weekends. The big annual holiday periods - Christmas and Easter - can often see the entire fleet book out.
Seasons also have an impact: in Winter, bookings tend to be lower across the fleet. From mid Spring through to early Autumn, more people are planning trips and booking cars.
You could experiment with setting your rates higher before a long weekend arrives (if your car isn’t already booked), or lowering your rates in Winter to keep bookings ticking along when things are quiet.
Keep in mind that this feature isn’t currently designed for peak pricing, so there are some limitations. In particular, you can’t set your new price to start on a nominated date in the future.
Let’s say Connor books your car in November for the Christmas to New Year’s Eve period, and your daily rate is $35 a day. Then, the week before Christmas, you raise the daily rate to $50/day. Connor will pay $35 a day, as that was the rate that applied at the time he booked.
Let us know how you go
If you’ve experimented with rate changes, or have feedback or ideas, please share them by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or in the Car Next Door Owners’ Facebook Group.