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Details on how free FLEX periods work
 
Hello,

We recently changed the way we manage free FLEX periods, taking a more targeted approach rather than applying the free usage to all FLEX cars, as was previously the case. Following this change there has been some confusion among our members. This is particularly true when, as was the case yesterday, the free vehicles were picked up "like hot cakes" in just a few minutes (around one hundred FLEX vehicles out of roughly 800 were offered free of charge).

To avoid any confusion in the future, please read the following carefully.

HOW THE FREE USE PERIODS WORK
 
Remember, only FLEX vehicles identified by the blue snowflake icon are available for free.

If after the announcement of a free period, as was the case yesterday, you no longer see vehicles displaying this icon, it is simply because the vehicles that were offered for free have all been claimed.
 
SPONTANEOUS FREE PERIODS VERSUS ANNOUNCED FREE PERIODS
 
Spontaneous free periods
 
We sent out a message last Tuesday, January 12, to announce that going forward cars could be offered for free on any day, without any specific announcement necessary. In these cases, the free use period will always be the same, namely:
 
from 3pm that day to 10am the next day.
 
Announced free periods
 
On the other hand, when the situation requires us to be more generous to ensure that all the vehicles offered for free will find takers, as was the case yesterday, we will send an email to let you know about the free period. This information will also be posted on social media.

Remember that in the event of targeted free use periods (as opposed to across-the-board free periods applicable to all vehicles), a FLEX used free of charge will no longer be displayed as such once released. Its icon will return to the usual orange style.
HOW TO MAXIMIZE YOUR CHANCES OF CLAIMING A FREE VEHICLE?
 
Unless otherwise specified, the free period starts at 3pm. Check your app close to the starting time of the advertised free period.
Between the start of the free period and 7pm that day, it is also possible that other vehicles will be added to the offer.
This is particularly the case if we find that vehicles are on snow removal routes planned by the city of Montreal.
 
If you haven't had the chance to claim a free vehicle soon after the start of the advertised free period or around 3pm during a "spontaneous free period", then it may be worth checking your app from time to time, to see what becomes available. This will be the case this time:
Watch your app today to see which vehicles will be free until 10am tomorrow (Tuesday).
WHY WILL ACROSS-THE-BOARD FREE USE PERIODS BECOME THE EXCEPTION RATHER THAN THE RULE?
 
During this pandemic, especially during the curfew period, demand is lower, and the across-the-board approach does not allow us to achieve the desired objective, which is to maximize the probability that the cars that really need to be moved are the ones being moved. Remember that the primary objective of free use periods, from a "win-win" perspective, is to facilitate the work of our staff to minimize the risk that vehicles remain unmoved during a snow removal operation.
 
In closing, please bear in mind that unless we have announced a free use period applicable to all vehicles, it is risky to select a vehicle at random before seeing the blue "free use" icon in the hope that it will be one of the cars offered free of charge.
 
We hope that this information will be useful to you, and we take this opportunity to wish you once again to make the most of the joys of winter while respecting public health measures!
The Communauto Team
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