Commuters start vanpool on campus


Imagine a congested roadway with cars barely moving, drivers becoming frustrated and all those involved leaving a carbon footprint. Commuter Services of Pennsylvania is trying to help prevent just that through education and vanpooling.

On Thursday, Sept. 12, Laura Heilman and Cher Comp presented a vanpool forming session to educate those at Shippensburg University of the options the nonprofit organization Commuter Services can provide in order to promote commuting.

Vanpooling, a group of seven to 15 commuters who agree to ride together in one van and share the costs, was the main focus of the presentation. Focusing on the staff and those who commute at least 30 miles one way, Commuter Services was presented as the inbetween for commuters and van vendors.

The services include helping to accommodate commuters with organizing a formation meeting, choosing a type of vehicle, determining the costs and choosing a driver.

The main focus of vanpooling is to provide convenience and reduce the cost of traveling. Vanpooling allows people to travel without the worry of insurance and car repairs.

Also, vanpooling allows a flexible 30-day agreement that lessens the concerns of being tied to a contract. It is easy to get started.

“Anyone can go online and input information and see if they have matches in their area,” Comp said, explaining the ways to get started.

However, vanpooling is not the only choice Commuter Services provides.

“We promote everything outside of driving alone,” Comp said. “We help people look for the best option for their commute.”

Such options outside of driving alone include bicycling, riding transit, carpooling and the emergency ride home program, which were all mentioned in the presentation. These other options should interest not only staff but also students because it does not only reduce their travel costs but also shrinks their carbon footprints.

Although Commuter Services’ goal is to help those who commute and decongest roadways, its main focus is to improve the air quality.

In September, to encourage the help of anyone who travels to promote going green, anyone who rides a transit is able to enter to win.

“Those who log their transit mileage, either online or by mail, are able to win prizes,” Heilman said. Prizes include passes from the local transit, a Kindle Fire, or two round-trip Amtrak tickets to New York City.

If interested in participating in try transit month, to win prizes and reduce the carbon footprint, the form and transit routes are available on the website: PaCommuterServices.org.

For more information about Commuter Services or vanpooling, check the website, contact Laura Heilman via email at laura.heilman@PaCommuterServices.org or call 1-866-579-RIDE.


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