Tips on forming a rideshare group
The company of fellow commuters can be one of the best social benefits of ridesharing. Drivers and riders can make their vanpool or carpool experience more pleasurable for all by agreeing on a few details in advance:
- Plan a meeting to discuss who will drive (one person or take turns), what type of vehicle (a rental, private vehicle, or Pace van), and when riders will be picked up and dropped off as well as if unscheduled stops (coffee, daycare, errands) will be agreed upon.
- For the pick-ups and drop offs, choose a mutually convenient meeting place -- either someone’s home or a central location such as a park-n-ride lot near bus or train service.
- Check insurance coverage -- some auto insurance policies offer rate reductions for ridesharing.
- For carpools, decide on the payment process and stick to it for covering gas, tolls and parking costs. If your group agrees to take turns driving, then payment may not be needed. For those participating in the Pace Vanpool Incentive Program, payment is handled through Pace.
- Create guidelines regarding:
- Pick-up wait-times such as how long will the group wait for others to arrive
- Preferences for eating, drinking, talking on cell phones and music/media
- Driver responsibilities such as having a current driver’s license, driving safely, keeping the vehicle clean, serviced, full of gas and covered under insurance
- Scents and aromas – many people are sensitive to certain smells, so consider other riders when wearing perfume or cologne, smoking or eating
- Create a good line of communication. Ensure that everyone has exchanged phone numbers and email addresses. If someone cannot make it on a given day, let the driver know in advance. Don't forget to also give notice of any plans for vacations or overtime.
- Have a back-up plan in place for emergency situations. Agree on an alternative travel plan when the assigned driver is unavailable.
Give your rideshare group time to run smoothly. If ridesharing daily is challenging then try it a couple of days a week.
Once a rideshare group is established, everyone can use the Travel Calendar provided on PaceRideShare.com to track costs and emissions savings. The Pace RideShare Commute Summary will let you know the total money and miles saved as well as the pounds of emissions reduced.
For even greater savings, you can look for new matches on PaceRideShare.com. As additional registrants sign-up, you may discover other commuters with whom you can share commuter costs.