People who carpool together spend quite a bit of time together each day. Therefore, it is essential that all members of the carpool members feel comfortable with their fellow carpoolers. Commuter Connections has several suggestions that help to assure a pleasant carpool experience for everyone.
1. Determine Your Carpool Route and Schedule. Establish meeting points and times for both the morning and returning trips. Also, be sure to designate agreed-upon drop-off location(s) for the carpoolers.
2. Draw Up a Schedule for Driving Responsibilities. If there are multiple drivers in the carpool, create a driving schedule so there is no confusion regarding driving responsibilities. Carpoolers sharing driving responsibilities may choose to alternate driving responsibilities on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. If the carpool contains more than 2 people, make a schedule of pick-up times for the passengers.
3. Create a Carpool Contact Information Sheet. Make sure carpoolers share their phone numbers so people can be contacted with any changes in the carpooling schedule. All carpool members should be contacted as soon as possible of any unscheduled changes (such as illness, family emergency, unexpected overtime, etc.) in the carpool schedule. Scheduled disruptions to the carpool (such as vacation time, teleworking, out of office meetings, etc.) should be shared with all carpoolers ahead of time so that alternate commuting plans can be made. It is also a good idea for carpoolers to share their email addresses with each other so that a carpool schedule containing driving responsibilities, pick up times and locations, and other important information can be distributed to all carpool members.
4. Reimburse Driving Expenses. If the members of your carpool do not share the driving equally, come to an understanding of how the costs will be shared and agree on payment dates. Make sure the reimbursement is agreed upon by all members of the carpool. Be courteous and make sure any payments are paid on time.
5. Be Punctual. Decide how long the driver is expected to wait for passengers before leaving. Use the Carpool Contact Information Sheet to try and contact the missing passenger before leaving.
6. Carpool Etiquette. Everyone in the carpool should come to an agreement regarding carpool etiquette. Common topics to discuss include smoking, music, cell phone use, food/drinks, etc.
7. Drive Carefully and Keep the Vehicle Clean. Speeding and aggressive driving may make other carpoolers feel nervous and unsafe. When carpooling, be sure to obey the rules of the road. Also, keep a clean and tidy car as a courtesy to your passengers.
8. Respect Your Fellow Carpooler. In general, be pleasant, courteous, and respectful of fellow carpoolers. Be mindful that some people prefer to be quiet in the mornings.
9. Make Carpooling Serve One Purpose. Most carpoolers are interested in traveling between their home and work locations. Therefore, the carpool should not make unexpected stops for errands unless it is agreed upon by all carpool members.
10. When in doubt, Contact Commuter Connections – We’re here to help!
If you lose a member of the carpool and need help finding a replacement, call us at 1-800-745-RIDE.
Sign up for the Guaranteed Ride Home Program to ensure that you will be able to get home in case of an emergency or if you miss your carpool. The Guaranteed Ride Home Program, which provides up to 4 free rides home per year in the event of an emergency, is the perfect safety net for carpoolers, providing you with the piece of mind needed to confidently carpool to work. Sign up online or call us at 1-800-745-RIDE for an application.