The average American spends 52 minutes commuting to and from work every day. One of the main reasons for this prolonged driving time is everyone’s most dreaded driving obstacle: traffic. Think about how many vehicles are on the road with only one or two passengers, all likely going similar routes. If we could create a more efficient way of getting to and from work, therefore reducing the number of cars on the road, we’d probably get there a whole lot faster. Luckily, there are a handful of new services that are attempting just that.
Try out a “microtransit” service
The phrase “microtransit” isn’t really a “thing” yet, but the idea of a bus meets Uber hybrid is starting to pop up all over the US. Companies like Chariot (San Francisco) and Bridj (Boston, DC, Kansas City) have fleets of shuttle buses that run similar routes to the public bus system but tout more reliable and comfortable rides. Simply open the app, select your desired time and reserve a guaranteed seat. The service isn’t on-demand on like Uber, and you have to choose from one of their predetermined routes, but the price is typically much cheaper (and therefore better for your bank account).
Give the bus another chance
Even if you’ve had a bad experience with public transit in the past, don’t write it off just yet. Public transportation companies are continually improving their services, and in some cities, introducing totally revamped offerings. Throughout the Bay Area, Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) is currently under construction. These new buses will have dedicated lanes to free them of car traffic, and platforms to ensure seamless boarding. Over on the East Coast, Virginia recently debuted the Metroway system, a similar concept where a new fleet of buses travel in a dedicated lane and breeze by traffic.
Carpool with ease
You don’t need to give up the freedom of driving to work to get there more efficiently. With a carpool service, you can make better use of your car and pick up others going the same way. While the hassle of finding someone who has a similar route and schedule might seem daunting, there is an array of new apps and services that make this easier. From Scoop, which lets you schedule your trip ahead of time, to UberPool, which you can order on-the-go, save money and time by sharing your commute.
If one of these options works well for you and you find you are driving less, or your commute is more traffic than mileage, you could save a ton of money with Metromile’s pay-per-mile insurance offering. Get a quick quote now to see how much you could save!