What does Vanpooling Even Mean??


So every day you see your neighbor get in their car about the same time as you and head off to work. You considered carpooling, but no one in your cul-de-sac or rural road, whichever the case may be, works in the same direction as you. So you drive alone, come home, wake up and repeat. What if there was another way?

Well… there are regional vanpools that have been in place for years that allow commuters that don’t have others to carpool with an opportunity to have an easier commute, save money and use a sustainable commute. Using Share the Ride NC, Triangle Transit matches up folks going from nearby starting points to nearby end points. For instance, people who work for various employers in RTP but live in Fayetteville meet at a central location near I-95 at the same time each morning to make the commute. Same goes for residents of Fuquay Varina, Clayton, Wake Forest and more, but not just to RTP, but to Raleigh, Durham, Cary and other locations – even Sanford!

The best part about the vanpools is that while there is a monthly fare for riding, it usually works out to cost less than your gas for a couple of weeks of commuting (and some employers let you use pre-tax money or even subsidize!). That doesn’t include the reduction in oil changes, tire rotation, other maintenance or the decline in value due to mileage on your vehicle – you can calculate how those can add up too. And don’t forget to check with your insurance agent – many times it can result in a lower rate. Why? Well in 2009 Triangle Transit vanpooler saved almost 12 million miles on their cars – that’s about 17,000 miles per year, per vanpool rider!

So there are seats available in several of the vanpools across the Triangle – commuting in or out to other areas. Check out the vanpools with availability, and if you don’t see what you’re looking for, then contact Jim Gleason to see if there are others interested in a vanpool along your daily commute route. Think others at your work site may be interested? Then spread the word with this handy tool kit with fliers to get others signed up too. Worried about needing a ride home or elsewhere in an emergency? Don’t be. We have that covered with the free Emergency Ride Home program too. If your child becomes ill, you suddenly have to work overtime and will miss the van ride home, we still provide a solution to you at no cost.

So good luck finding a good match to work. And don’t forget to pat yourself on the back for all the good you’re doing for the environment. I know everyone can’t walk or ride a bus or bike to work, but Triangle area vanpoolers still saved 10.7 million pounds in CO2, as well as more than 30, 000 pounds of NOx and 37,000 pounds in VOCs – and that’s just for 2009!