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Share a Ride during October

October is national car-share month. Car sharing isn’t about shared vehicle ownership, but is when two or more people share a journey to the same destination. Some people have made it a regular practice for their daily commute to work; others use it for infrequent travel such as going to a festival or visiting friends in other parts of the country.

Gill started car sharing two years ago when she changed jobs to work at a new out-of-town office location which is not well served with public transport options, and the company had limited allocated car parking spaces. The company had introduced a preferential car parking policy for car sharers, and had set up a car- sharing scheme enabling employees to find someone else who either lived nearby or along the same route. Despite some initial apprehensions about sharing a journey with a stranger, Gill soon realised many of the benefits of this new way to get to work. “Although the trip was still taking exactly the same time, it seemed to pass so much quicker with someone else to chat to, and I soon became good friends with my car- share buddy. The financial benefits were also very quickly noticed. We had chosen to take it in turns at driving alternate weeks, and so soon I was only filling up with petrol once a month and saving over £50!”

Her husband was surprisingly impressed with how well it had worked out so he also car shares with a colleague who lives nearby from time to time, but as his working hours are more unpredictable he tends to do it less regularly.

You don’t have to own a car to become a lift sharer. Many people are happy to drive, but then to share the costs of fuel and parking with someone else going their way.

So how do you find someone to share your journey if your company doesn’t have its own scheme? TravelWest.info (the travel website for the West of England) can help introduce you to your lift-share buddy on-line. It is an easy-to-use website. Simply enter your home postcode and the postcode of your destination, together with the times you wish to make that journey, and it will identify people doing the same journey so that you can get in contact with each other direct to make necessary arrangements to meet up. You will also be notified whenever anyone new signs up who is seeking to do the same journey. You can find frequently asked questions about car sharing answered on travelwest.info.

So why not give it a go this month? If you were to car share for only one day each www.travelwest.info week it would take another car off the road, helping to reduce congestion and reducing our carbon footprints across the West.

Win a pair of TravelWest mugs!

We’ve got 10 pairs of TravelWest travel mugs to give away so you and your car-share buddy could enjoy a steaming coffee over the winter months as you travel together. Simply tell us about your journey and why you love to share it, and the winners will be selected at random on 31st October 2013. To enter, email competitions@flavourmagazine.com with ‘TravelWest’ in the subject line and your journey sharing story and full contact details in the email body. Good luck!

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