Commuting makes travel more cost-effective

Carpooling Saves You Time, Money and Stress

Posted 26 August 2016 12:00 AM by J.D. Byrider

Carpooling has many more benefits than just letting you slide into the special carpool lane for cities lucky enough to have them. It saves money, especially if you have to commute long distances to work every day, it saves stress and time if you have multiple kids involved in multiple extracurricular activities, it’s great for the environment and it helps to reduce traffic in large cities. That said, people who choose to carpool spend a lot of time together during the week, so it’s important that carpoolers feels safe and comfortable.

Here are some tips and advice for increasing the chances of a successful and safe carpool.

The Benefits of Carpooling

  1. Participating in a carpool helps save money on gas, save money on car care, and for drivers living in larger cities, it can reduce parking fees as well. Carpooling also helps to reduce wear and tear on your vehicle components, which reduces overall maintenance fees and increases the life span of your car. Insurance companies often offer give you discounted rates if you participate in certain carpooling programs.
  2. Carpooling helps to reduce traffic congestion by simply reducing the number of cars on the road. With fewer cars of the road, carpooling also helps protect the environment by reducing carbon emissions and air pollution levels.
  3. Opting to share driving responsibilities with someone else can help reduce stress levels by proving you with an opportunity to relax. Carpooling also offers users the opportunity to meet new people and nurture professional relationships. There are tools available to help match you with other carpoolers you may be compatible with.

Helpful Carpooling Tips

  1. Determining a route and schedule is critical to a successful carpool. Decide as a group on meeting points for both drop-offs and pick-ups. You also should determine meeting times and decide what happens if someone is more than 15 minutes late.
  2. Divide up driving responsibilities and create a schedule to avoid confusion and miscommunication. You can create a schedule on a daily or weekly basis. Make sure that the schedule, including drop-off and pick-up times and locations, is effectively communicated with all members of the carpool.
  3. Create a contact sheet, or download a texting app, such as GroupMe, in order to quickly and effectively communicate with members of the carpool. Stability and reliable is paramount to a successful carpool. Any changes to the carpool schedule should be communicated to members quickly. Scheduled disruptions, such as vacation time or working out-of-office, should be shared with your other carpoolers so that they can make timely and adequate alternate plans.
  4. If one or some members of the carpool do more driving than others, reimburse them sufficiently. Come to an agreement about how the costs will be split amongst the carpool members, as well as, what days these payments need to be made.
  5. The purpose of the carpool should be clear and communicated with the other carpool members. Most people use a carpool in order to commute back and forth between work and home. Therefore, you should try to limit the amount of unnecessary stops and errands the carpool makes, unless agreed upon by all members of the carpool.

Commuting isn't just for workers

    Basic Carpooling Etiquette

    1. The number one rule of carpooling etiquette is to be on time. If you are going to be late, even if just by a few minutes, contact the members of your carpool and let them know. In a carpool situation, if one member is late all of the members run the risk of being late reaching their destination. Make sure the group has decided on a proper waiting period prior to beginning the carpool.
    2. Respect your fellow carpoolers and their vehicles. Establish rules about smoking, eating and drinking, music volume levels and cell phone etiquette. If you’re a driver in the carpool, make sure to keep your car clean and tidy to help provide comfort for your riders. Stay on top of your maintenance routines to reduce the chances of on-the-road mishaps.
    3. If you’re driving, make sure you follow all traffic and safety signs and laws. Being an aggressive or angry driver can cause other carpoolers to feel nervous or uncomfortable. Also, make sure all riders use their seatbelts.
    4. Don’t ask to make extra stops along the way and avoid bringing up controversial topics such as politics, religion or race relations. Try to avoid long personal cell phone calls or having loud, excessive conversations that could distract the driver.

    Carpooling is a great way to save money, save time and reduce stress. Carpooling isn’t just beneficial to the city commuter, either. It can help parents get their kids to and from school, as well as after school activities and on weekends. Teenage drivers can carpool to save money on gas and help their parents save money on insurance payments, too.


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