Looking for a new way to get around Columbus? Car2Go is a car-sharing service that makes it really easy to explore the city.

All Car2Go vehicles are Smart Cars - two-seaters. They're easy to maneuver an even easier to park - at just eight feet long, they fit almost anywhere. You need to pre-register and receive a key-card before you can use Car2Go (more on that later). But once you have that, you can find a car (by the end of the year, there will be more than 200 inside I-270) either by using the Car2Go app for iPhone or Android or just by finding one visually. Hold the key-card up to the receiver on the dashboard on any available car. This unlocks the doors and starts your trip.

car2go_columbus_complete_image_set_1004When you get to your destination, you have two choices - you can end your trip and find another car for future trips, or put the car in stop-over mode, which ensures it will be there for you when you're ready for it - but you do have to pay for that time. To end a trip, hold the key-card up to the receiver again. Car2Go's service area does not include Port Columbus International Airport, so you may not end a trip there. A taxi is a good alternative. Car2Go 3To use Car2Go, you have to register in advance to receive your key card. Registration costs $35, and each mile driven costs 38 cents, with a maximum hourly charge of $13.99. Parking is easy - you can park anywhere in the service area - except for 30-minute parking meters and streets that have parking restrictions (like 3rd and 4th streets downtown, which don't allow parking during rush-hour.) More parking details can be found here. To make things easy for visitors, for a limited time, you can get a key-card with same-day service by stopping by Car2Go's office at 20 S. 3rd Street downtown. If you're a member in another Car2Go city, your key card will work here, too.

I was really impressed with the ease and convenience of the Car2Go service - once you register, it can let you explore the city on your own terms, with a cost that's usually less than renting a car if your trips are short. Will you try a car sharing service?