How to help: Northern California wildfire relief

10 tips for creating a fun carpool group

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star-sponsored-nativeThe following article is sponsored by UCAIR.

There’s a major convenience and freedom when it comes to owning a car. You can come and go as you please, listen to whatever music you feel like and have a little downtime during your drive.

We agree that cars are a great way to connect us to people and places, but did you know that cars make up almost half of of daily emissions in the state? In Utah we have a major problem with air quality during the inversion season – and even though inversions are inevitable, we can all do something to reduce the smog.

Have you ever considered carpooling? It is great way to reduce your emissions and save money. If you carpool at least once a week, you can save $11 and reduce your emissions by 16.63 pounds per day. Not only will you save money and reduce your emissions, you’ll feel less stress from everyday driving, too.

Here are our top 10 tips for creating and keeping a carpool group:

  1. Find coworkers or friends who live near you.This will save you time when picking-up and dropping-off your carpool.
  2. Set a pick-up and drop-off time schedule, but be prepared to be flexible in case of an emergency.
  3. Rotate drivers. No one wants to be part of a carpool group if they have to drive every day. Set up a schedule and take turns.
  4. Share your contact information with group members and vice versa.
  5. Drive safe and smart. Remember you are carrying important cargo. Don’t forget to have everyone in your vehicle buckle up.
  6. Keep your car nice and clean.No one likes riding in a car that smells and looks like the dump.
  7. Get to know your coworkersduring your commute, but don’t be afraid of quiet time.
  8. Prepare some awesome music. Let’s be honest, nothing dulls the drive to work like bad music. If you and your carpool buddies have different taste in music that’s ok. Just take turns controlling the dial.
  9. Be prepared to show your “fun” sidein the car, but be warned, your co-workers may post your car dancing moves on YouTube.
  10. Bring treats or coffee if you are feeling generous.You’ll be everyone’s favorite driver.

Carpooling doesn’t have to be something completely out of your comfort zone.  You can have a good time getting to know your carpool buddies, take advantage of traveling in the HOV lane, save money and reduce your emissions at the same time. It’s a win-win for everyone.

For more tips on carpooling, check out TravelWise’s carpooling page and visit UCAIR.org for other strategies and tips to help clear the air this winter.

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