Coronavirus has left many wary of public transportation and ride-hailing services, in a boon to Zipcar and its competitors

Like many people in recent months, AnnaLiisa Ariosa-Benston of Brooklyn has seen her primary sources of income transform in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. An arts event producer, she now is picking up odd jobs in renovation and design to make money. And to do so, she has found – for the first time in her ten years of living in New York City – that she needs a car.

Despite having used Uber and Lyft in the past, Ariosa-Benston now says she wouldn’t feel as comfortable sharing space with a stranger in a small vehicle. She recently tried to rent a car in New York City and found all the rental locations near her were booked out in advance or extremely expensive. In another attempt to find a car on a work trip in Atlanta, she checked at the desks of every single car company at the airport – all were sold out.

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