Rising Gas Prices See CommuteSmart Participation Spike

As the price of gasoline at the pump continues to rise, so do the number of people signing up for the RPCGB's commuter program, CommuteSmart. Through the promotion of carpooling, vanpooling, teleworking, biking, walking or taking public transit, CommuteSmart saves commuters money at the pump as well as and puts cash in their pockets. The program has seen a 36 percent increase in sign-up over the last six months as compared to the same time one year earlier.

More than 10.7 million vehicle miles were reduced through the CommuteSmart program. Commuters saved more than $3.5 million in estimated commuter costs and more than $650,000 in fuels costs in the Birmingham area during 2011. With gas prices rising to nearly $4/gallon, Birmingham area commuters are looking for a way to save money. Through its Get Green program, CommuteSmart pays commuters $1 per day, up to $70 over a 90-day period to change their commutes from driving alone to a qualified alternative commute. Commuters are paid for each day they carpool, telework, take transit, bike or walk to work. Through its ride-matching database, CommuteSmart can match riders to find the optimal potential carpool and vanpool partners.

Commuter Club is another incentive program open to residents and workers of Jefferson and Shelby counties. CommuteSmart provides $25 gift cards on a quarterly basis to commuters logging at least 20 qualified commute trips during the course of the quarter. Participants in the Get Green program automatically roll over into the Commuter Club program after the initial 120 days.

CommuteSmart also provides a vanpool program designed to assist groups of seven to 15 people who ride to and from work each day with the use of a comfortable passenger van. The cost of vanpooling varies from van to van. Each van passenger pays an equal share of the operating costs which include the van payment, gasoline, parking, etc. So the more riders you have, the less you pay!

If you or your company are feeling the pain at the gas pump, contact CommuteSmart to find out how they can help. Visit the website or call 1-87-RIDEMATCH for more information.