Frequently Asked Questions
Who can use VURideMatch.com? Any Vanderbilt University faculty, staff or student that has a @Vanderbilt.edu email address.
What are the benefits of carpooling? Carpooling lets you share the cost of driving; it provides you with company for your commute and saves you money. It is often the perfect solution for commuters located far from their worksite or without access to transit service. In some families carpooling to work avoids the need for a second car.
Is there a charge to use VURideMatch.com? There is no charge to use VURideMatch.com.
Why is VURideMatch.com one of the most advanced in the world? VURideMatch.com uses the RideShark RideMatching System, a state-of-the-art geocoding technology which searches for matches along a route from your origin to your destination, and offers extensive user-controlled search defining abilities. It defaults to searches within employer groups and maximizes accessibility and usability for users.
How do I register with VURideMatch.com? Registering is fast, easy and simple. Follow these easy steps:
First time users:
- Click on ‘Register as a new user’
- Enter your work email address and select a non VU personal password
NOTE: This site is only for use by faculty, students or employees with an @Vanderbilt.edu email extension.
- Enter your address information including
- Home address
- Carpooling origin address (if different from your home address)
- Destination (work) address
- The system will confirm your origin and destination on a map. The system may correct an incorrect zip code (note that some work zip codes correspond to a central mailing system rather than the actual address of the building
so the system will ‘correct’ your entry to correspond to the actual physical address of the location you entered).
- If the system doesn’t recognize the address, you will be able to select your location on a clickable map. Drag your cursor across the screen to move the map or zoom in/out with the “+” or “-“ buttons.
- Define your travel schedule.
- Select ‘Search for matches”
- The system will return a list of potential carpool partners, based on your defined search criteria. You may modify or change any of this data to better narrow down your search.
- To contact a person from your matchlist, select “email this person”. The email is sent from you to the contact directly from RideShark. The contact is then able to reply directly to you. This is the methodology that systems such as EBay use to communicate between a buyer and a seller.
- Indicate if you are looking for a carpool or vanpool partner.
- Login with your User ID and non VU Password
- Start searching
- Contact people from your matchlist
Why can’t I search for carpool partners immediately upon registering? Before registrants are permitted to search for carpool partners, the system will send an email to validate the email addresses entered. When you receive the email you need to click on the activation link to enable the search feature.
How does VURideMatch.com find carpool matches? RideShark, the system which hosts the VURideMatch.com site, is one of the most advanced ridematching systems in existence today. Your origin and destination are geocoded to a corresponding latitude and longitude coordinate. A ‘route’ from your origin to work is evaluated. The system will match within a user-defined distance from your origin, destination and along your route.
What if I don’t want other people to ‘find’ me in searches because I’ve found a carpool partner or I’m not able to carpool right now? Simply click on the “Personal Profile” button, and then uncheck the button that says ‘I am actively looking for a carpool partner”
Is my information private? Yes. Rest assured that all of your data is secured to a very high level using the same technologies that on-line banking and major on-line merchants utilize. No information provided during registration will be provided to any external agency at any time. For monitoring purposes aggregate data only will be used to evaluate and assess the ridematching system.
What about car insurance? Personal or corporate vehicle insurance is dependent upon your policy. Therefore it is strongly recommended that you check with your insurance provider prior to initiating any carpool. VURideMatch.com assumes no responsibility for insurance issues.
I forgot my User ID. What can I do? Remember that your User ID is also your VU email address.
I forgot my Password. What can I do? On the login page simply click on the link “I forgot my password”. Enter your email address and the password which corresponds to that email address will be immediately mailed out.
What if I don’t find a match? First, make sure you’ve tried adjusting your search settings. The default setting searches within 3 miles from where you live or work or 3 miles along your route. You can expand or reduce these search distances as necessary. If you still don’t find a match, try searching again in a week or two. It takes a while to build up registrants in the database so don’t give up if you’re not immediately successful.
Will encouraging carpooling reduce transit use? VURideMatch.com is all about improving the travel options for commuters. Typically carpoolers are those whose origin, destination or working hours are not conducive to using transit. There have been no known studies that demonstrate a correlation between a ridematching system and reduced transit use. In fact, when more options are available to commuters some may find that by carpooling on some days they are more likely to use transit on the days they don’t carpool. A ridematching system provides increased opportunities for carpooling only.
How do I get help if I’m having technical problems? If you’re experiencing any problems click on the help link at the bottom of the page to email technical support.
Who do I contact if I have comments or general questions? Click on the comments link at the bottom of the page to email TravelWise.
What is RideShark and/or RideShark Corporation? RideShark Corporation is the developer of the RideShark generic and specific dedicated VURideMatch.com application and hosts the application database. RideShark Corporation is a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner.