Ever heard of car subscriptions? Here’s why their popularity is growing

Consumer patterns have changed in the last few years, and how. From signing up for a set-top box and making a life-long commitment to cable TV, we now subscribe to specific OTT (Over-the-top) services that appeal to our tastes. Very few people choose to buy complete music albums today because streaming sites allow them to listen to or download only those tracks which they want or like. Even accommodation has become flexible; serviced apartments and short-term leases are available to look for convenience and ease.   

The success of these different services has been convincing enough for car brands to roll out similar subscription models to anyone who wants to be a car owner without having to fully commit to the legalities or financial liabilities of having a car. Car subscriptions allow you to ”subscribe” to a vehicle for a limited period quickly, easily and without all the paperwork. Sounds like a good short-term alternative to car ownership right? And it is a concept that is quickly catching on. 

How car subscription works

To use an analogy from the telecom world, purchasing a car is like buying an unlocked phone and then choosing a phone service provider. A car subscription is more like a contract phone purchase – you get to use a lovely phone handset, but you don’t have to pay the high sticker price it commands. In the same way, you can sign up for a car subscription for a specific period – from a few months to a few years, depending on what suits you best. 

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Most car subscription platforms only ask you to create an account, choose your ideal car (from the car models available) and then finally provide scanned copies of essential identity documents, such as your Aadhar and PAN card. Once you have completed this process, your request is sent to the company. The approval for this request is then based upon your credit score. And voila, you can start using your car after that!

Paying for a car subscription 

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One of the most significant amounts that get eliminated with a car subscription is the large downpayment you would have to make if you were purchasing a car. It only involves a monthly fee (which is agreed upon before you subscribe to the car), and it can be as simple as charging it to your card. Much like an EMI, the amount will be debited from your account on the same date every month. #ItsThatEasy.

What happens at the end of the subscription?

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The subscription tenure can run from six months to five years, depending on what you opt for. At the end of this subscription tenure, you can choose to either renew the subscription for the same vehicle or trade-in the current car for a newer model. Or you could simply discontinue the service if you no longer need it. 

After all, the idea behind a subscription service is to cater to your evolving needs.

Other benefits that come with a car subscription 

When you sign up for a car subscription, there are several things that you, as a car owner, do not have to worry about. This includes

  • Insurance renewal
  • Maintenance costs
  • PUC (Pollution Under Control) certification

All these are taken care of by the subscription provider. Additionally, you even get 24×7 roadside assistance to ensure you never have a problem. 

So, in a nutshell, a subscription is just like owning a car but with almost zero commitment. #ItsThatEasy