Surfing the blogosphere the other day I came across interesting research via Zimride's blog. Washington D.C. recently participated in a carpool incentive demonstration program to see how offering cold hard cash effects commuting behaviors. But what I found really interesting was a chart from a Los Angeles carpool incentive program.
LA implemented a "Rideshare Rewards" program and offered $2/day for three months for carpooling. The chart below shows how well that small incentive worked.
Carpooling increased from 35% of program participants to 75%. But more importantly the retention rate was pretty high - 53%. Another important factor is the drive alone rate change. Only 1.7% of commute trips during the program were by single occupancy vehicle. While a good chunk went back to driving alone to work, all of those commuters learned first hand that they have options when getting to work. And the first step in changing behavior is realizing that change is actually possible. Kudos to Rideshare Rewards!
If you'd like to check out the Washington D.C. study that cited LA's program, click here.
Now, how much would it take you to leave the car at home for a couple of months?