With the continuously increasing costs and troubles of owning and driving a car, more and more of us are moving away from car travel and gearing towards public transportation. But there’s nothing worse than being packed onto a subway or a bus like a sardine, stuck between two grumpy and sweaty guys, with everyone around you unhappy and wishing they were anywhere but where they are at the moment. Trust me, I’ve lived through it time and time again.
He doesn’t look very happy… None of them do… But that can change with a change in the means of transportation!
A Better Alternative Public Transportation Option
There is one type of alternative public transportation that I have had only good experiences. And that is Carpooling! Carpooling occurs when 2 or more people arrange to travel together to an agreed upon decision, rather than all separately getting there through public transportation, or by using their own vehicles.
One time, I carpooled from Montreal to Quebec, and met a synchronized swimming olympian that was about to go to the 2012 UK Olympics. How awesome is that!? Obviously there are times where you will land on a true weirdo, but even that is a great opportunity to learn more about the different personalities and perspectives that exist in our world.
How it Works
The beauty of carpooling lies in its simplicity. For work travels, you simply get a few colleagues on board to carpool to work, and get a rotation cycle to determine who’s turn it is to drive. For long distance carpooling, many companies and organizations now offer organized carpooling opportunities, in which people with extra seats in their cars can “rent” their seats to others who need to travel to certain places. These websites essentially exist to connect those with available seats in their car with those looking for a seat in a car. Its cheap, efficient, and generally much more comfortable than taking the bus or the train to get to wherever you want to get.
The following are a few local examples, I am sure there are countless more services out there, so if you know of other reliable carpooling services in your region, please tell us and we can add them to the list!!!!!
Eastern Canada and New England Area in US – www.amigoexpress.com (Kangaride in english) – Amigo Express has been steadily growing for over a decade. I remember using their services all the time when I was younger to travel between Québec City and Montréal.
Western Canada – HitchPlanet – https://www.hitchplanet.com/ – The two founders of Hitch Planet are on a mission to bring a reliable carpooling service to Western Canada. I strongly recommend using their app if you are ever in need of a ride!
United States – Ridejoy – http://ridejoy.com – Try out Ridejoy if you are ever in the United States and in need of a car ride!
United Kingdom – Carpooling UK – www.carpooling.co.uk
One of the largest in Europe – Carpooling – www.carpooling.com
Germany – Karzoo – http://mitfahrzentrale.karzoo.eu/en/home
Spain, France, and Europe in General – Blablacar – https://www.blablacar.com/ – This is my personal favorite! I have used it countless times when I was traveling all across Spain.
South Africa – Findalift – http://www.findalift.co.za/
South East Asia – Grab Taxi – https://www.grab.com/vn/
The Alternative Ways Tips and Tricks: Check the reviews of those who are offering a space in their cars. Many of them have done 100s of rides, and have reviews regarding safety, cleanliness, reliability, and general character of the driver.
The Alternative Ways Overall Rating – ****
Adventure – ***
Culture – ***
Cheapness – *****
Comfort – ****
Safety – ****
Sustainability – *****
Until Next Time,