You see carpooling lots on the corners of major highways and their intersecting ramps.
In some areas, you may even see carpooling lanes.
You may know the word, or you may be wondering what it’s all about. Here’s an overview the benefits of carpooling and why you should consider sharing a ride whenever you can.
What Is Car Pooling?
How carpooling works is that you meet up with other people and you all ride together to your destination. Many people working in larger cities with a commute meet up to ride together.
Carpooling isn’t only used for work trips though – some people carpool on vacation as well.
The idea is that carpooling offers many benefits to the people that participate in it, like the following:
- You’ll spend less money on fuel expenses since you’ll be sharing them with the other people on the ride.
- You’ll also spend less money on parking fees.
- You’ll also be putting less wear and tear on your vehicle, which means fewer maintenance expenses.
- Since you get a break from driving now and then, you’ll have less stress.
Why Carpooling May Be Right for You
For many people, the advantages of carpooling make it a no-brainer. If you’re unsure if it’s right for you, here are some of the things to ask yourself.
1. Do I Want to Save Money?
As you learned above, there are plenty of money-saving benefits when it comes to carpooling.
You may help with gas in the other vehicles, or it may be something that just equals out when it’s your turn to drive. Since you’ll only be driving your car a couple of times a week, you’ll be putting much less money into the gas tank, and you won’t have to pay for parking every single day.
Some people, if they live in the same neighborhood, will pick riders up right at their door. If you’re carpooling with people that don’t live within a few blocks, you may park at a carpool lot. That’s still much less driving, and the lot parking will be free.
2. Am I Tired of Driving All the Time?
Commuting to work five or more times a week can be tiring and stressful, especially if your drive is twenty minutes or longer.
By sharing rides, you can take some time to relax on the days when it isn’t your turn to drive.
There are also the options of using Lyft or Uber now, depending on where you live. The cost of these types of commuting options can really add up though.
3. Is My Commute Excessive?
If you have to drive forty-five or more minutes a day to work and there are other people with the same commute, why not swap rides?
With less traffic on the roads because of carpoolers, you may even spend less time commuting and more time enjoying your busy schedule.
Long commutes can also be made better by having company in the car with you. You may carpool with people you know well or people you barely know. Carpooling gives you time to catch up with those you know as well as time to make new friends.
4. Do I Care About the Environment?
Consider whether or not you care about the environment, because that is just one more advantage of carpooling – you cut down on the emissions and air pollution. It’s really a simple way to help save the environment.
Vehicles do a lot to harm the environment and the air we breathe. Put a little less pollution out there and get a couple of vehicles off the commute each day. It’ll help you feel good about doing something good.
5. Do I Want My Vehicle to Last Longer?
Your daily commute to work is wrecking your vehicle. Do you feel like you’re replacing your tires a ton? Do your oil changes come up before you know it? Carpooling will definitely cut down on these expenses.
Cars need regular maintenance. However, that maintenance is often determined by the amount of miles you put on your car.
Fewer miles, less money spent.
6. Do I Want to Help Reduce Traffic?
If you want to get some of the traffic off the roads, carpooling is one great way to do it.
If work is too far away for walking or biking, and you don’t have public transportation available (or it’s not affordable), carpooling is your best option.
Plus, you can use the carpool lane, where available.
When Not to Carpool
Carpooling isn’t for everyone. If you’re not a people person and you don’t like riding with others or having people in your car when you’re driving, then you should probably just stick with commuting on your own. The benefits of carpooling may not outweigh your potential discomfort.
Feature image via Shared Mobility