How To Get Started
Starting or joining a car pool is easy. Finding the right people and making it work for everyone requires a little more thought. Fortunately there are resources available that make it easier than ever before. Below you will find an online tool that helps match you with other car poolers, a kit for starting your own car pool and a list of park and ride locations. First, a few quick steps for getting started:
- Find car pool partners. The Match & Ride tool is a quick and easy way to find commuters online who are compatible with you.
- Establish the rules. Will there be smoking, eating or drinking allowed in the car? How long will you wait for people who are late? Be sure that everyone understands and agrees on rules like these before starting.
- Write down your route and schedule. Be sure to include meeting points, times for departing and returning trips, and agreed-upon drop-off locations.
- Clearly define driving responsibilities. If there are multiple drivers in the car pool, create a driving schedule so there is no confusion about driving responsibilities. Decide how you will alternate driving responsibilities (for example, on a daily, weekly or monthly basis). If driving responsibilities will not be shared equally, establish how you will share the expenses and when payments will be made. Verify that all car pool drivers have a valid driver’s license and car insurance.
- Share contact information. Exchange phone numbers so everyone can be contacted if there is a change in the schedule. Define a chain of communication for notifying car pool members of any changes to the normal schedule. You may also want to share e-mail addresses so you can distribute information like the route schedule and driving responsibilities.
- Create a back-up plan. Always have a back-up plan for unavoidable situations and last-minute changes. Register for your backup emergency ride.