CommuteCon 2020

Carpool 2.0

Mary Thomasmeyer
Commuter Programs Specialist
Commute.org

Session Description

Mary Thomasmeyer is a commuter programs specialist at Commute.org, a regional organization focused on improving transportation and commuting in Northern California’s San Mateo County. She joined CommuteCon 2020 to talk about Carpool 2.0, an innovative new transportation management program in the works in San Mateo County, which is a major regional commuter corridor.

The Carpool 2.0 program is designed to boost the impact of the new high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) express lanes on their way to Highway US-101 in San Mateo County, which are expected to open in 2022. This HOV initiative will allow vehicles with three or more occupants to use the new lanes free of charge. Commute.org is currently working to encourage commuters to make an early switch to carpooling so the new HOV lanes have a strong and immediate impact in reducing congestion and vehicle volume.

In designing Carpool 2.0, Mary and the Commute.org team decided to implement a rewards-based incentive program to provide a $25 gift card for every 10 qualified carpool trips logged by a commuter. Individual travelers can claim up to four gift cards for a total of $100 in rewards, which are processed weekly. Carpool 2.0 is powered by RideAmigos and includes participation from Scoop and Waze.

Marketing efforts centered on social media and email promotions, as well as employer outreach programs, digital billboards on local roadways, and direct mail campaigns to local residences. Early indications point to a huge success, with Mary and her colleagues tracking data through the RideAmigos platform in addition to quarterly surveys among 1,961 commuters who received at least one gift card.

Logged statistics indicate the program generated:

  • 218,453 one-way trips covering more than 4.7 million miles
  • More than $1.3 million in community and commuter cost savings
  • Elimination of 955 tons of carbon emissions

Mary also noted that the program routed a lot of new users into Commute.org’s STAR commuter management platform. This enabled Commute.org to expose them to its other commuter programs, which in turn received a healthy boost in participation.

To learn more about Mary’s success with the Carpool 2.0 campaign, be sure to view her full CommuteCon 2020 presentation.

About the Speaker:
As the Commuter Programs Specialist at Commute.org, Mary Thomasmeyer helps administer programs that support commuters in San Mateo County switching to alternative transportation modes. She is primarily responsible for managing a carpool rewards program using the incentive feature on the RideAmigos platform. She enjoys a multimodal commute to work but prefers to carpool as often as possible.