Car-sharing service Car2Go opened for service at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on Monday — for an extra fee.
Five Car2Go parking spaces will be at the airport's Terminal 2, also known as the Humphrey terminal, in an 18-month test program. Each space can fit two Car2Go Smart cars.
Users can use a smartphone app or check online to see whether cars are available. Generally, Car2Go cars are used for one-way trips.
The service comes at a time when travelers — and employees — are using an increasingly diverse array of options to get to and from the airport. At a public hearing last month, cabdrivers faced off against drivers for ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft, which want to provide service at the airport. The Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) is expected to come up with a ride-sharing template in the coming months.
At MSP, drivers can drop off a Car2Go vehicle by entering the parking area near the departures drop-off zone at Humphrey and following signs to the parking spaces. From there, travelers can take the light-rail to Terminal 1, if needed.
If all five spaces are full, Car2Go officials say drivers should leave the car in a space closest to the Car2Go hub.
Car2Go will levy an extra $7.50 "convenience fee" for vehicles picked up or dropped off at the airport, in addition to the 41 cents per minute normally charged for use of the car-sharing service.
Meanwhile, the MAC is being paid $7,665 by Car2Go for each space during the 18-month car-sharing pilot program.
Just days ago, Car2Go confirmed plans to reduce its service area in Minneapolis, mostly on the city's North Side and near its southern border. This follows a plan in St. Paul that curbed service boundaries there, as well.
Car2Go, a subsidiary of Smart carmaker Daimler North America Corp., said it will create several remote stations to help serve people outside the new service area in Minneapolis.
Car2Go came to Minneapolis in 2013 and St. Paul in 2014, and it has more than 25,000 members locally.
"Our members said they wanted to be able to begin and end trips at the airport, and we listened," Car2Go Twin Cities General Manager Josh Johnson said in a statement.