Ridesharing

Photo: CarpoolRidesharing means riding together in one car or van. Sharing the ride saves money on fuel, insurance, and car maintenance. Ridesharing can also reduce time spent on the road, because vehicles with enough passengers can use High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes and 495 Express Lanes. When they're not behind the wheel, passengers can read, nap, or chat, reducing stress. Ridesharing also helps reduce air pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and traffic congestion.

There's more than one way to share a ride.

Ridesharing can be as simple as family members, neighbors, or coworkers deciding to ride to and from work together. But that's not the only way. Local governments, employers, and private companies offer ridesharing services to match you to an existing carpool or vanpool, or help you form a new one. For instance, in Arlington County, many commercial buildings are required to manage carpool/vanpool incentive programs that offer convenient, reserved spaces and reduced parking rates for 'pool vehicles. Recently, several companies have begun to offer services that allow users to share rides on an occasional basis -- not just for their everyday commute.

Carpooling

The most familiar form of ridesharing, carpooling usually involves a group of people who live and work near each other, commuting together in a private vehicle. Carpool members may take turns driving, and members benefit by not having to drive every day. In some commercial areas, registered carpools get access to convenient reserved parking spaces at reduced parking rates. Although carpooling is usually associated with regular trips to and from work, carpoolers enjoy some of the same benefits when they share a ride to any destination. Increasingly, ridematching services are becoming available that can match drivers and riders for individual trips, not just every-day commutes.

Graphic: Reserved Parking for Vanpool signVanpooling

A vanpool is generally formed with the help of an employer or vanpool service. Each vanpool has a primary driver/coordinator and one or more alternate drivers. The vanpool participants share cost of the van and all other operating expenses. Riders usually meet at a designated pick-up location like a shopping center parking lot or a park and ride location. The number of pickup and dropoff locations depends on the nature and needs of the vanpool group.

Vanpools, unlike carpools, are also eligible for federal tax benefits. Under current federal policy, employers may give their employees a subsidy to commute via vanpool; this contribution is then eligible for a tax deduction, and the employer saves over providing the same value in gross income. Or, employees may use pre-tax income to pay for vanpooling expenses, or a combination of both, up to statutory limits. This offers another financial incentive to share the ride.

Slug Lines

An interesting side effect of HOV lanes has been the establishment of unofficial carpool-formation areas called "slug lines." Commuters catch free rides with drivers who need additional riders to be able to use the HOV lane along their route to and from work.

More Information and Slug Line Resources

Slug-Lines.com – Slugging and slug lines information for the Washington, D.C. area
Sluglines.com – Bringing community to the slugging world
Smartslug.com – Free Web app for slugs and drivers

Ridesharing and Ridematching Services

Services operating in the Washington, D.C. area that provide ridesharing information, match riders to carpools and vanpools, and assist in forming carpools and vanpools.

Guaranteed Ride Home

If you regularly share a ride to work, you may be eligible for Commuter Connections' Guaranteed Ride Home (GRH). GRH provides free taxi rides home when the unexpected happens. Guaranteed Ride Home is also available to commuters who use other commuting alternatives, such as transit or bicycling. More about the Guaranteed Ride Home Program.

Other Ridesharing Resources

495ExpressLanes.com
495 Express Lanes are available to high-occupancy vehicles and toll-paying customers. All users will need an E-ZPass® transponder; high-occupancy vehicles will need the E-ZPass Flex.

Arlington County Transportation Benefits by Building
Find out if your Arlington apartment or office building offers ridesharing incentives or other transportation benefits such as bike storage or SmarTrip cards.

EZPassVA.com
Information from the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) about E-Z Pass® and E-Z Pass® Flexsm.

Park and Ride Lots
For commuters who can't walk, bike, or take transit to the carpool or vanpool meeting place or slug line location, Park and Ride Lots provide a place to leave the car.

Did You Know?

Each U.S. rush-hour auto commuter spends an average of 50 hours a year stuck in traffic.

League of American Cyclists

News Headlines
MARC Penn Line schedule changes effective May 2

April 26, 2016, MTA

FTA inspectors uncover more Metro track defects

Robert McCartney, Lori Aratani, May 1, 2016, Washington Post

Metro expands fire liason presence at Control Center

May 2, 2016, WMATA

Metro late-night track work puts wide gap between trains

Robert Thomson, May 2, 2016, Washington Post

More News & Events

Upcoming Events
Crystal City Sparket

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Pizza Provocation: A Community Bike Ride

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Turtle Trot 5K

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Bike to Work Day 2016

Friday, May 20, 2016

Events Calendar

Arlington’s Bicycle & Pedestrian Counters

Bikes counted

View Counter Data
110 Trail
70
14th Street Bridge
182
Arlington Mill Trail
104
Ballston Connector
174
Bluemont Connector
42
CC Connector
469
Clarendon EB bike lane
49
Custis Bon Air Park
219
Custis Rosslyn
0
Fairfax EB bike lane
37
Joyce St SB
9
Key Bridge East
273
Key Bridge West
162
Military NB bike lane
48
Military SB bike lane
14
Quincy NB bike lane
19
Quincy SB bike lane
21
Roosevelt Bridge
44
Rosslyn Bikeometer
203
TR Island Bridge
213
WOD Bon Air Park
271
WOD Bon Air West
334
WOD Columbia Pike
228
WOD East Falls Church
236
Wilson WB bike lane
61

Peds counted

View Counter Data
110 Trail
318
14th Street Bridge
142
Arlington Mill Trail
395
Ballston Connector
263
Bluemont Connector
179
CC Connector
427
Custis Bon Air Park
346
Custis Rosslyn
488
Joyce St SB
79
Key Bridge East
1340
Key Bridge West
614
Roosevelt Bridge
62
TR Island Bridge
221
WOD Bon Air Park
573
WOD Bon Air West
534
WOD Columbia Pike
355
WOD East Falls Church
286

All counters, YTD

View Counter Data
Year to Date
2614505
About Arlington’s Bicycle & Pedestrian Counter Program