Why put miles on your personal car, when you can put them on a STA owned van? Vanpools are groups of five or more people who share a similar commute trip from home to work, which is at least 10 miles one-way. The group decides on the meeting time, location and route it will take. The group pays a monthly fare that covers the cost of the van, gas, insurance, maintenance and even 24-hour roadside assistance.
There are more vanpools in Washington State than anywhere in the country! To find vanpool partners, you can logon to CommuteFinderNW.com to get a list of interested people with commutes similar to yours. For more information about Spokane Transit Vanpool, call 326-7665 (POOL).
Thinking of giving vanpooling a try?
Step 1. Finding vanpool partners
All you need is four others -- in addition to yourself -- to vanpool. Or, get as many as 14 - the more people in your pool, the lower your fare. There are lots of great ways to find vanpool partners.
You can contact co-workers and neighbors. Click here to print a Vanpool Wanted Flyer to post in high traffic areas at your worksite. Talk to your Employee Transportation Coordinator (ETC) or Human Resource Department at work. They can help get the word out that you are interested in starting or joining a vanpool. To join an existing vanpool, click here to go to the STA website to see a list of operating vanpools. You can also call 509-326-POOL (7665) or email STA at STAVanpool@SpokaneTransit.com.
Step 2. Pick a flexible time and place.
Once you have your vanpool together, the group decides on a route, pick-up points and schedule. Vanpooling is flexible, so consider picking up riders at health clubs or even daycare centers -- places that fit everyone's needs.
After your group establishes a route, you can figure out your daily mileage which sets the fare. (Check with Spokane Transit for exact fares.) Plus, many employers subsidize vanpools. Does yours? Check with your Employee Transportation Coordinator.
Step 3. Choose your drivers and bookkeeper.
Now you're ready to choose a primary and, at least, one back-up driver. To be a vanpool driver, you need:
- At least 5 years of driving experience and possess a current drivers license.
- A good driving record for the past three years.
You'll also need a bookkeeper to collect fares. This person must have a good credit history. Anyone in the group, including the drivers, can be your bookkeeper.
The vanpool drivers may receive a reduced or free fare. For more information, call 509-326-7665 (POOL) or email STAVanpool@SpokaneTransit.com.
Step 4. Complete your forms and get ready to hit the road.
Just complete the driver and bookkeeper applications and rider agreements. Once your pool is approved, drivers and bookkeepers will attend an orientation class that ends with your primary driver taking the van home. It's that easy! Click here for additional vanpool information.
Vanpooling to work is a smart way to share your ride and your expenses. It's also a great way to help eliminate traffic congestion, pollution and reduce your stress.