Carpooling saves money, extends the life of your car and lowers your impact.  It's also a chance to relax or have a good conversation.  If you have a regular schedule and a medium to long commute, consider joining a carpool!

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Annual Savings
$0 - $0
Upfront Cost
These are estimates

Energy and water savings

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Gallons Gas
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Gallons Water
  • Save money, time and reduce the stress of driving
  • Reduce wear and tear and prolong the life of your car
  • Reduce carbon emissions and air pollution

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The Action
I (or we) will carpool and lower our driving miles.
Is this action for me?
If you drive a car, this action is for you!
When and Who?
This action can be done anytime by anyone.
How long will it take?
Quick - it is easy and quick to look for a carpool and get started.
What is the cost?
No cost - and big savings!


  • Save money, time and reduce the stress of driving

  • Reduce wear and tear and prolong the life of your car

  • Reduce carbon emissions and air pollution



Find Carpool & Rideshare Programs with 511

Cut your commute time and drive the HOV lane if you drive a qualifying clean vehicle


Bay Area clean air commute options brought to you by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District

The Basics

There are a few things that make carpooling easier - a regular schedule to your destination that others also share like a regular work schedule, workout schedule or school schedule. Carpools are a great way to get kids to soccer practice, study sessions and other after-school activities that are out of walking distance. Carpooling is a great way you can reduce commute times by using the carpool lanes and connect with others or have extra time to relax or catch up on email. Start with one day and see how it goes!


Find someone to ride with
Coordinate schedule and pick-up location
Establish expectations
Have a backup plan

Find someone to ride with

Step #1 - find someone to ride with.  There are many ways to do this.  If you know anybody who lives near you going to the same place, ask if they’d like to ride together.  If you are carpooling to work, check with your human resources department to see if your company has a carpool program.  If you’re on an email list associated with your destination (work, school, church), email the list to see if anybody wants to carpool.  You might make a new friend!  There are also online resources for finding people to carpool with:  


These sites often have a rating system for carpoolers.  Consider choosing carpool partners with a high rating, particularly for new carpoolers.

Coordinate schedules and meetup locations

Once you find someone to carpool with, work out the details.  Decide who will drive on which days and where you will meet up.  Consider whether you are comfortable with the other drivers knowing where you live and decide whether to meet in a neutral location.  Some areas have a park and ride pickup area that makes this easy.  Or, you can meet on a corner near your house.

Finally, establish a time for each pickup.  When there are multiple people involved, this can get complicated so make sure to write it down!  Finally, decide how to split the cost.  You could alternate driving or passengers could chip in for gas.  Not all cars consume gas equally, so figure out together what is fair for everyone.

Establish expectations

There are some things you’ll want to discuss beforehand to avoid discomfort or disagreements down the line.  

  • How long will you wait for someone who is running late?  

  • Is eating or drinking allowed in the car?  Would everyone like to stop for coffee?

  • Is music ok and if so what kind?  

  • Is smoking allowed?  Is perfume/cologne allowed?

  • Is talking on cell phones ok?

If you are driving the neighborhood kids, make sure the kids in the car know what your expectations are, and what the consequences are.  Some examples:

  • If anybody screams, I stop the car

  • If anybody hits, kicks or bites somebody, I stop the car and the consequence is...

  • No name calling

  • No eating in the car, etc.

Backup plan and enjoy the ride!

Even the best-laid plans fall through sometimes.  People get sick.  Life happens.  You’re depending on each other, so make sure to have a contingency plan.  Then, relax and enjoy the ride!  Bring a book, catch up on emails or enjoy a good conversation.