Car2go paid the city $578,000 for a year of that privilege, District Department of Transportation program manager Josh Moskowitz wrote.
After registering online - my RFID-chipped membership card showed up six days after I applied - you rent a car by booking it through car2go's site, iOS app or third-party phone programs. Or you can walk up to one, tap your card on the sensor in its windshield, and wait about 30 seconds for it to confirm the reservation. Tap your PIN on the screen in the dashboard, and you're off.
Rentals cost 38 cents a minute up to a $13.99 hourly rate, which then switches to a $72.99 daily rate if you drive long enough. A prepaid gas card in the glove box covers refueling.
It helps if there's a car near you. Spokeswoman Katie Stafford says the service lets cars wind up where they may, only moving one if it goes unrented for too long. So far, the densest concentrations have been just outside of downtown.
You also have to end a rental in your "home area"; here, it stops at the district's boundaries and excludes places like Rock Creek Park and the Mall. Another catch is insurance. Although car2go's legalese doesn't spell it out, you're exposed to $1,000 deductibles for damage to the car and for third-party liability. So drive carefully, as if you're borrowing somebody else's car.