What is a vanpool?
A vanpool is a group of 5 to 15 people who commute together to and from work in a roomy, comfortable van. The riders share the costs of operating the van.
Who owns the van?
VPSI owns the vans and provides insurance, maintenance & repairs, license and registration.
Who does the driving?
One member of the group will volunteer to become the primary driver. In addition, each van is allowed up to five alternate drivers who can drive in the event the primary driver is unavailable.
Is a special license required?
No, however, VPSI requires drivers to be at least 25 years of age, hold a current and valid US driver’s license in the state in which they reside (with exceptions for active duty military personnel) and have a minimum of five years acceptable driving experience.
What are the driver’s responsibilities?
Generally the driver is responsible for picking up and dropping off passengers at the scheduled times each day, collecting passenger charges, sending the payment to VPSI, fueling the van, delivering the van for maintenance and reporting any accidents or incidents and completing a simple monthly report. In exchange, the driver typically rides free.
What happens if the driver is sick or on vacation?
Each van is allowed up to five alternate drivers who are subject to the same criteria as the primary driver. If the primary driver is unavailable, one of the alternate drivers would drive the van.
What is the commitment?
The VPSI vanpool program is a month-to-month arrangement. The driver would be required to provide VPSI a written notice 30 days prior to termination.
“Nuts & Bolts”
Volunteer Driver Application and Agreement
Click here for the agreement.
VPSI provides auto liability, comprehensive & collision coverage.
VPSI covers all maintenance and repairs.
Because you share the cost with up to 14 other people, vanpooling is much less expensive than driving yourself to work.
Step by step example:
Determine basic route
Riders usually meet at a designated staging area like a shopping center parking lot or a park and ride location (VPSI has a list of park and ride lots available). Some vans have more than one pick-up point, some don't. It's the same with drop-off points at the destination. It all depends on what’s most convenient and efficient for each vanpool group. If you’re unsure of how to plan this, remember you can always contact your local VPSI representative for assistance.
Estimate monthly expenses
You will need to know the approximate length of your commute. Then contact your local VPSI representative to assist in estimating your monthly expenses based on the size and type of van you choose.
Advertise route and recruit riders
Prospective riders can be friends, acquaintances, neighbors, co-workers or anyone who travels the same route you do at the same time you do. Prospective participants can often be found in local databases of people who have indicated an interest in ridesharing. Your local VPSI representative can assist you in obtaining “match lists” that correspond to your intended route. Once you have identified prospective riders, ask them to help you recruit additional participants. The more passengers you can recruit, the lower the monthly cost will be! To help with your vanpool formation efforts, you can download these two flyers to post at your workplace or in your neighborhood:
It’s important to identify several volunteer drivers to ensure continuity.
Many groups qualify multiple alternate drivers and some groups designate a “secretary” to be in charge of administrative details. The choice is up to you.
Complete and submit applications. Download the applications from our website here, or ask your local customer service center to fax or email you a copy. The approval process usually takes 48 hours or less.
Communicate! Communicate! Communicate! VPSI can provide an email template you can utilize to facilitate communication on how you are progressing with forming the group so you can maintain the excitement about getting started!
Hold a group formation meeting with potential riders
We’ve learned the best way to actually get things moving is to schedule a meeting of all interested participants to resolve issues and really nail down the details. Determine a time and location that is convenient. Decide if you will meet at work or at someone’s home and whether you will meet before, during or after work hours. Keep the meeting as short as possible and get right to the basics, where, when and how much. Do introductions, determine route and schedule, select a vanpool vehicle, work through a brief monthly cost calculation, estimate a start-up date, solicit alternate/back-up drivers, and initiate a discussion on van rules and procedures. Your local VPSI representative will be glad to assist you.
Determine start date and collect first month’s payment
Establish van rules and, if possible, register all participants in a Guaranteed Ride Home program
VPSI will deliver the van to you.
Get in the van...vanpool!