Vanpool--your new savings account

 

What is a Vanpool?

A vanpool is a group three to 15 people who commute together in a comfortable passenger van. We own, maintain, manage, insure and license a fleet of 7-, 12- and 15-passenger vans. These vans are issued to commuter groups and driven by volunteers who share the commute. To start or join a vanpool with Intercity Transit, your trip needs to start or end in Thurston County.

Vanpool riders pay a low monthly fare based on the number of miles traveled and the number of riders. Use our cost estimator to get an idea of your monthly commute costs. Some employers even pay part of their employees' van fares!

If you want to join or start a vanpool now, email us or call us at 360-786-8800 or 1-866-330-7033. You can also use RideshareOnline.com, a free, online ridematch service to help you locate commuters who are also interested in vanpooling. 

Is a Vanpool the Right Choice for Me?

When you vanpool, you help reduce the number of vehicles on the road. And, you meet new people and make new friends in the process! Other benefits include:

More money in your pocket 

Vanpooling saves you money on gas, oil, insurance, parking, and wear and tear on your vehicle, a savings of about $400 a month. That's six times the average monthly vanpool fare! If your employer offers transportation subsidies, you'll save even more.

Stress-free commuting

You can use the HOV lanes and move past all that traffic when you vanpool. You may also be eligible for preferred parking and, if you ferry, you can cruise right to the front of the line.

More time in your day

Get a head start on your work day in the vanpool, catch up on some reading, or grab a few more minutes of sleep. It can help you unwind after a busy day, so you get home relaxed and refreshed.

How does it work?

You need at least three commuters to start and maintain a vanpool. Each group must have a coordinator, a driver and a bookkeeper. We approve and train drivers before they can drive the vanpool vehicle.

Vanpool passengers pay a low monthly fare (see cost below) depending on mileage and number of riders in the van. Fares cover the costs of operating the van, including fuel, insurance, and maintenance. (Adobe Reader 6.0 or later required to view fares. Free download available.)

The vanpool group creates its own rules such as pick-up and drop-off locations and the commute schedule.

You pay your fare at the beginning of each month to reserve your seat, but you aren't required to ride every day; members can ride fewer than five days a week.

If an emergency happens while you're at work, vanpoolers are eligible for a free taxi ride home, covered by your employer or Intercity Transit.

How do I start one?

You need at least three people to start a vanpool. The more people, the lower your fare. Put up Vanpool Riders Wanted signs around your office building and talk with friends. We're happy to help in the search, just:

After you have found at least two other riders, call us. Your group will need you to:

  • Map a route
  • Decide on pick-up and drop off points
  • Determine a schedule
  • Choose someone to coordinate the vanpool
  • Choose a bookkeeper to collect fares
  • Choose one or more drivers. Drivers must meet specific requirements. We screen and approve all drivers. Fill out the Vanpool Driver Application and fax (360-357-6184) or mail it to Vanpool Services, P.O. Box 659, Olympia, WA 98507
  • Sign up driver(s) for our Defensive Driving course
  • Have all drivers and riders read and sign the Vanpool Agreement then send it to Vanpool Services, P.O. Box 659, Olympia, WA 98507

Can I join an existing one?

Yes! To join an existing vanpool or to find others interested in forming one:

  • Check out our Current Vanpools
  • Find a vanpool going your way
  • Call the coordinator listed on the roster 
  • Call us at 360-786-8800 or 1-866-330-7033
  • Visit RideshareOnline.com

How much does it cost?

Monthly fares are based on the number of round-trip miles your van travels each day and the number of monthly riders in the van. Use our cost estimator to see the approximate cost of your vanpool commute, or use the links below for actual vanpool fares based on mileage and the number of passengers in the van.

Fares cover the costs of operating the van, including gas, maintenance and insurance.

Below are links to vanpool fares based on the number of days per week they operate:

Do vanpool vehicles accommodate mobility devices?

Yes! We can provide a mobility-device accessible van for you.

Finding a vanpool

To find out if there's a vanpool going in your direction:

  • Take a look at our Join a Vanpool page to see a complete list of our current vanpools
  • Call us at 360-786-8800 or 1-866-330-7033
  • Email us
  • Go to www.RideshareOnline.com, a self-serve ridematch service
  • Call the Rideshare Hotline at 1-888-814-1300