Rutland County Council

Travel4Rutland

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is car sharing (liftsharing, ridesharing, carpooling)? top

Car sharing, which can also be referred to as liftsharing, ridesharing and carpooling, is when two or more people share a car and travel together.

What are the benefits of sharing a car for participants? top

People will have various reasons for wanting to share a car, including:

  • saving money from reduced fuel, parking, wear and tear on your vehicle (assuming you accept a lift as well as offering one)
  • wanting to help reduce the number of vehicles on the road and thereby reducing traffic
  • wanting to remove the stress of having to drive each day in heavy traffic and enjoy being a passenger for a change
  • use of preferential car parking spaces at the Catmose building, allocated by RCC for registered car-sharers.

There could be a range of other reasons, but whatever they are, the effect on those participating, the environment and other road users is always positive.

What are the benefits to the environment of sharing a car? top

A reduced number of cars on the road naturally reduces emission levels and therefore has a positive impact on the atmosphere. Fewer cars also results in a reduction in traffic levels, less wear and tear on the road surfaces and road repairs being required on a less frequent basis. These factors all result in reducing congestion which in itself has a negative impact on the environment.

How does car sharing work? top

Once you have completed the registration form the details will be entered into the database. The Carshare system will then produce a list of suitable sharers; people to pick up on the way or who live near you and who meet the criteria you have requested. If at this stage no suitable matches are found you will be directed to the Coop site where matches will be found for you. From this list it is then up to *you* to contact each other and formulate a carshare agreement that is convenient to you all.

You do not have to over commit yourself at this stage. One option is to set a trial period and a date to review the feelings of all parties. This will enable you to stop sharing at this point if the arrangement doesn't suit any or some of the parties involved.

The RCC's Travel4Rutland car share facility is a "Private Restricted Group" - what is that? top

A Private Restricted Group is a group that has been created for an organisation that only certain people can join (i.e. members of staff at Rutland CC). Members who can join these groups are restricted by email addresses, IP addresses (only from Rutland CC computers) or a Pass code. Being part of a Private Restricted Group means that your search for a match will only be with other members of the same restricted group. This form of group offers greater levels of security than public groups. It is envisaged that in time we will extend the scheme out to include Rutland businesses.

How safe is car sharing? top

The safety of members should be the priority of any car sharing network, and we have developed the RCC system to ensure that it is secure as is possible. All members' details are stored securely in the database and only the members' intended travel information can be accessed by other members.

When it comes to traveling, every member is responsible for his or her own safety. However it is recommended that members follow some simple security measures outlined below.

  • Avoid exchanging home addresses with your traveling companion before you meet them.
  • Arrange to meet for the first time in a public place.
  • Inform a friend or family member of who you will be traveling with, when and to where.
  • Make sure you see each other's IDs - RCC ID cards, passports or driving licenses - so you know you're traveling with the right person.
  • You are under no obligation to go ahead with any car share arrangement. If you have any doubts about your traveling companion, for any reason, then you don't have to travel with them.

It is your responsibility to check that the person you are sharing with has all the legal driving documents, such as driving license, car insurance, MOT and car tax.

What are the costs of car sharing? top

We suggest that drivers and passengers share the cost of petrol (e.g. passengers paying a set rate per mile or splitting the cost of petrol for the journey in half). Any payment arrangements should be decided upon before starting a journey.

Please note that drivers should not make a profit from sharing a car as in most countries this can invalidate their insurance and tax. If you have any concerns please contact your insurance company directly.

What are the insurance implications of car sharing? top

The Association of British Insurers clearly states that car sharing won't affect the insurance of their members so long as a profit isn't made:

"Giving Lifts - All ABI motor insurers have agreed that if your passengers contribute towards your running costs your insurance cover will not be affected, as long as lifts are given in a vehicle seating eight passengers or less. This agreement does not apply if you make a profit from payments received or if carrying passengers is your business." (www.abi.org.uk)

Drivers with any concerns should check with their insurance company as terms and conditions may vary between insurance providers over time.

How can I find a car share partner? top

Sign on to the RCC car share system and search for a match.

Is it possible to find traveling companions of the same sex? (Single sex traveling i.e. only females)? top

Yes.

How do I contact potential car share matches? top

Once a suitable journey match has been found, you should make contact (to agree a time and place to meet) by sending them a request to share from your account or calling them if a phone number is provided.

Where should I arrange to meet my other car sharer(s)? top

When you are trying a new car sharing arrangement it is not recommended that home addresses are exchanged (for security reasons). All members are advised to meet initially in public locations, such as a staff gathering area within the RCC building at Catmose.

Smokers / non smokers top

If you have preferences or traveling with non-smokers/smokers then you should discuss any issues with the prospective driver/passenger when you first contact them.

Do I have to share every day? top

No the registration form will include a section that enables you to choose the days that you want to share.

Will there be a guaranteed space at Catmose for car sharers? top

Initially there will be 24 spaces for car sharers available at Catmose which will be clearly marked and signed. It is envisaged that these spaces will suffice initially and it is encouraged that where people are sharing from the Coop that they bring the maximum capacity of the car. The parking spaces at Catmose will be monitored closely and reviewed if necessary.

What happens if I want to leave work earlier than usual? top

If you are the driver, just let the other person know so that they can arrange to leave work earlier too or so they can search to find another driver. If you are the passenger you should let the driver know and search for an alternative lift.

What if I car share and have to leave work suddenly? top

If, for genuine unexpected reasons, you have to leave suddenly and are a passenger, your line manager will have the discretion to allow somebody in your team or section to provide a lift home, or if there really is no one available we will pay for a taxi to your home. This is also the case for any passenger whose driver has to leave unexpectedly.

What happens if I am the driver and am sick? top

You must contact your car share partner(s) as soon as possible so that they can make alternative arrangements. As a passenger it is also essential for you to let the driver know you are ill so that they know not to wait if you are not at your pick up point.

What happens if my car share arrangement falls through? top

The car share scheme is a voluntary scheme which relies on the participants to make arrangements and communicate plans with their travel companions. If plans change and journeys can't be made, all affected parties should be contacted and forewarned with appropriate notice by those participating in the car sharing scheme.

What happens if after trying I find that car sharing doesn't suit me? top

If you find that car sharing does not suit you, you can stop at any time.

I work flexi time. Can I still share? top

Yes, car sharing is flexible. If you work irregular hours, we will put you in touch with employees who work similar hours to you.

I only have use of the car occasionally. Can I still share? top

Yes, the system will match you on appropriate days.

What happens if I didn't like the person I was car sharing with? top

As the driver you can avoid being matched with that person again by not responding to a lift request.

As the passenger you just don't apply for lifts offered by that driver in the future.

Nobody at RCC lives near me top

This maybe the case but the chances are that there is someone who travels to RCC along a route which passes, or runs within close proximity to, your home.

RCC have also provided a number of park-and-share spaces within the Oakham Co-Op car park situated along the B668 Burley Road to the east of the town. Car sharers are able to drive to this point in their own cars and then gain a pre-organised shared journey into the Catmose site.

Will my e-mail address be visible to other users? top

No, your email address is kept hidden and not shown to other members anywhere on the system. Messages are sent and received via the system rather than directly between participants.

If you have any more comments or questions please email travel4rutland@rutland.gov.uk

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