What is a vanpool?
A vanpool is a prearranged group of 3 – 13 people sharing a ride to and from work on a regular schedule and is similar to a carpool except C-TRAN provides the vehicle. The great thing about forming a vanpool is each vanpool group controls its route and schedule.
Who is eligible?
You need at least 3 people to start a vanpool. Their commute must be at least 10 miles in each direction (20 miles round trip) to be eligible for a vanpool commute. It does not matter if you are a Washington or Oregon resident, as long as you start, stop, or pass-through Clark County, you are eligible.
How does it work?
- Each vanpool must have a bookkeeper and at least 2 drivers. C-Tran must approve and train drivers before they operate the vanpool vehicle; so, some vanpools let the primary driver ride for free, in exchange for handling the driving and all the bookkeeping.
- Vanpool passengers pay a low monthly fare based on the round trip commute mileage, number of days the van is used per week, and the number of riders in the van. Fares cover fuel, insurance, and maintenance. The vanpool group creates its own rules, such as pick-up and drop-off locations and the commute schedule.
- You pay your fare in advance to reserve your seat, but members can ride fewer than five days a week and still belong to the vanpool.
- If an emergency arises while you’re at work, vanpoolers are eligible for a free emergency ride home, covered by your employer or C-TRAN.
How to get started?
- Find a ride match. You need at least 2 additional people who have a similar commute. Talk to your co-workers and register on Get There SW Washington to find people to share your vanpool.
- Secure your drivers. From your group of commuters, identify two or more people with good driving records. One driver is the “primary” and the other will serve as a “backup”. All drivers must complete the driver orientation through C-Tran.
- Call C-Tran. Once you have people committed to your vanpool and people lined up for driving the van, it is time to contact C-Tran at (360) 906-7510 to finish the paperwork.
- Relax! That is all it takes to start a vanpool. You just need 3 people committed to vanpooling to save time, money, and reduce stress.