14 June 2009

Italians say goodbye to property

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Dress sharing
Italy’s La Stampa newspaper reports today on the growing phenomenon of renting products rather than buying them:

“[…] But the real revolution is that renting is becoming a way of life which is changing consumption and society. Car sharing, bike sharing, i.e. quick rentals of cars and bikes, but also dress sharing, i.e. the rental of clothes and handbags. There is toy sharing: children toys, small machines, lego, and puzzles. Even tools for the disabled, wheelchairs, orthopaedic supports, computers, and whatever you might need in the gym, sports or vacation. You don’t need to buy, you can just rent.” [My translation]

The article provides many examples, with products both aimed at companies and at private individuals: from construction cranes to umbrellas, and from Ferraris to digital cameras. You can even rent vegetable gardens and land workers who will take care of a small patch of garden for a couple of euros a day, and deliver your vegetables at home.

No less than five websites are specialised in this new cultural phenomenon: NoleggioTutto, Noleggiando, Italnolo, ItaliaNoleggio and Noleggio.it (the word “noleggio” means rent or rental).

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