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) and 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

Sameride - Commuter Community for HOV/HOT carpool. Download the free Sameride app.
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

ExpressLanes.com
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.

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?

You can find out what transportation benefits are available where you live or work in Arlington?

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Arlington’s Bicycle & Pedestrian Counters

Bikes counted

View Counter Data
110 Trail
38
14th Street Bridge
149
Arlington Mill Trail
59
Ballston Connector
0
Bluemont Connector
41
CC Connector
73
Clarendon EB bike lane
134
Custis Bon Air Park
92
Custis Rosslyn
125
Fairfax EB bike lane
32
Joyce St NB
10
Joyce St SB
7
Key Bridge East
166
Key Bridge West
136
Military NB bike lane
14
Military SB bike lane
13
MVT Airport South
2429
Quincy NB bike lane
125
Quincy SB bike lane
12
Roosevelt Bridge
18
Rosslyn Bikeometer
101
TR Island Bridge
84
WOD Bon Air Park
88
WOD Bon Air West
98
WOD Columbia Pike
0
WOD East Falls Church
70
Wilson WB bike lane
53

Peds counted

View Counter Data
110 Trail
303
14th Street Bridge
56
Arlington Mill Trail
247
Ballston Connector
0
Bluemont Connector
167
CC Connector
216
Custis Bon Air Park
199
Custis Rosslyn
291
Joyce St NB
47
Joyce St SB
44
Key Bridge East
1168
Key Bridge West
452
MVT Airport South
391
Roosevelt Bridge
43
TR Island Bridge
369
WOD Bon Air Park
381
WOD Bon Air West
368
WOD Columbia Pike
0
WOD East Falls Church
42577

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9090881
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