Zipcar, MBTA, etc.

Join Zipcar and get $25 in free driving!Our aging-but-low-mileage Subaru was a little sick last week. But it’s hard for a one-car, four-person family to have the car in for repair, so it wasn’t until Friday evening that I took the car in. And by “took the car in,” I mean coax a stalling and obviously distressed vehicle to the repair shop on the corner.

At G&M Auto (no web site, but Yelp reviews), I found Maz (at 9pm, talking with friends in the office), explained the situation, and left the car and keys with him. One new radiator and other parts later, we got the car back today.

But what to do in the meantime? We used Zipcar yesterday and this morning to get kids to their places of learning, and to cover other errands. It worked very smoothly. Reserve online, pick up and drop off the car at the local train station (Roslindale, less than a mile away), use Zipcard to unlock the car, and so on.

On Sunday, we used our feet and the MBTA. Both worked well. The feet (and stroller) took us the couple of miles to the nearest T stop (Forest Hills), then the T and buses worked well to get us to and from the South End Market and other fun places. But more about the market in another post…

Credit Card for Free Trial

Many of us are better off not believing in a free trial offer that demands a credit card number. The free trial may well cost money. I’m not thinking of out-and-out fraud, although I’m sure that does happen.

I’m thinking mainly of the case in which we forget to cancel the service, even though we don’t use it. This most recently happened to me with eMusic.

There’s also the case in which the firm, in error, charges the card when it shouldn’t. Something similar to this happened to me with Zipcar. A couple of phone calls fixed the problem, until it recurred a few months later.

So, when my new MP3 player (on which, more soon) came with a free trial of, and the trial required a credit card number, I decided not to spend the time – and, perhaps, money – using the free trial.