Team Up! to make Ride-sharing Work
Do you drive a small sedan? On average, it costs you 42 cents per mile. If you drive something slightly larger, the cost jumps to 54 cents per mile. Based on those figures, a daily 20-mile commute would take $400 per month from your budget. Compare that with vanpooling, likely to save that same budget $325 per month.
Interested? Here are a few suggestions that you might want to discuss with your HR department or Green Team (or both!). It is possible… you can make ridesharing work.
Support the organizing
The first step to put a rideshare program on the road is to find out who may be interested. Given sufficient numbers, creating a directory would be a logical follow-on. That directory would list names, addresses (including zip code), approximate distance to the office, shift, and days worked. With that information in a spreadsheet, the directory could easily be sorted to create logical groups of people living in the same general area and working at about the same times.
Amongst themselves, group members may wish to determine if they would take turns as the driver, or if a rental van would be a practical alternative. In Orlando, Florida, the LYNX transportation system rents several types of vans. Typically, a 9-passenger model would rent for $510 per month plus gas and tolls. The lease would include up to 3500 miles, as well as insurance and maintenance. That equates to $59 per person, per month. Gas and tolls would be split nine ways.
Transportation companies nationwide offer similar options, worth checking out when rideshare is being explored.
A few small incentives can spark a valuable program.
- If parking spaces are included in your building lease, some of the front-row spaces might be reserved for VIP vans or carpoolers.
- Brochures or hyperlinks with vanpool or carpooling information could be provided. FoxBusiness.com has a page full of rideshare facts. GroupCarPool.com and other online companies offer tools and services worth considering.
- Once a ridesharing initiative is started, a little publicity will make it grow and flourish. Themed coffee mugs on desks or in the break room are a low-cost yet powerful way to spread the word.
Publicize the program
Once commuters have shown interest and car and van pools are forming, it’s to make the opportunities widely known. Ride sharing is social, so an ice cream social could be the ideal venue for a program launch party. Other budget-friendly options would be a brown bag lunch or neighborhood-style barbecue.
Executives or the Human Resources team could show support by serving. Consider creative touches like inviting representatives of the local transportation system, or provide name tags that include each individual’s zip code.