Vanpooling is a great way to reduce your commuting costs and lower your stress. By signing up with a vanpool through MassRIDES, the Commonwealth’s travel option service, commuters can get driven every morning and evening for a fraction of the cost of driving alone. Visit www.commute.com.
Vanpooling provides an additional transportation option for many commuters, especially for those who live in areas that are not well-served by fixed-route public transit. In order to support vanpooling and increase the “green” benefits that it can bring, MassDOT is providing selected vanpools with parking free of charge at the State Transportation Building, 10 Park Plaza, in downtown Boston.
Eleven vanpoolers who travel over 90 miles each way from Chicopee to Boston began parking for free downtown, including Chicopee passenger Jaswinder Singh, left above, and Chicopee vanpool coordinator Kevin Coulter, right.
How “green” is vanpooling? The Massachusetts vanpool fleet of 58 vans carries 635 passengers, and reduces statewide vehicle miles traveled (VMT) by 13,485,000 miles annually. By taking about 580 vehicles off of Massachusetts roads every day, vanpooling reduces air pollution, greenhouse gas emissions, and congestion.
Vanpooling also saves commuters “green” in their wallets. Vanpools provide a cost-effective travel choice, particularly for commuters with fixed schedules who travel long distances. Based on figures provided by the American Automobile Association, driving alone to work 50 miles each way can cost over $8,300 a year, and more than $13,500 if you include parking costs. However, the same commute in a 14-passenger vanpool can cost as little as $1,900 annually. This represents a potential savings of up to $11,600 in the commuter’s pocket annually.
Vanpooling has a positive impact on not only the environment and riders’ budgets, but also on the health and overall well being of vanpool riders by reducing the stress that a long commute produces.
In a recent survey of Massachusetts vanpoolers, 80% of commuters considered the primary advantage of vanpool commuting to be “less expensive,” followed by “less wear on car” (40%), and “better for the environment” (35%). Vanpools contribute toward MassDOT’s mission of expanding mobility, sparking economic growth, and supporting a clean environment.
MassDOT encourages and supports all forms of sustainable transportation that facilitate mode shift from single occupancy travel, help to reduce automobile congestion, promote healthy lifestyles, and benefit the environment.
Interested to learn more about vanpools and how you can enjoy the benefits? Visit www.commute.com.