Western Sydney Carpool
4395
Registered Carpoolers

FAQ

What is carpooling?

Who runs Western Sydney Carpool?

I've signed up. Now what?

What is a verified member?

I work alternate or rotating shifts – does the program cater for me?

How much does it cost to join?

If I link up with another Western Sydney Carpool member, do I need to commit to carpooling every day?

What are the benefits of carpooling?

What are the costs of carpooling?

What does my workplace have to do to join the program?

Is the program only open to big workplaces?

What duty of care or work health and safety considerations are there for a workplace?

Work travel and using a work vehicle?

What are the insurance implications of carpooling?

What should I discuss with a potential carpool partner?

If I decide to carpool, what steps should I take to ensure my safety?

Are my details kept confidential?

What is the etiquette of carpooling?

What is carpooling?

Carpooling is when two or more people who do not live together make arrangements to travel together in a single car.  Carpooling is a practical way to share transport costs and reduce road congestion and vehicle pollution.

Who runs Western Sydney Carpool?

Western Sydney Carpool is a program run by the Community Carpooling Association. We acknowledge the support of the Northern Rivers Group and Transport for NSW in establishing the program and in supporting its ongoing delivery.

I’ve signed up. Now what?

Welcome to the program – we hope you’ll find a carpooling partner for your regular journeys.  

If you’re an employee or member of a participating workplace, club or organisation, the organisation will verify your membership as soon as possible.

Once your membership application has been accepted, you can begin searching for potential carpool matches. If there is a member whose profile details match yours to a fair degree, send them a Link Up request – remember, you can communicate anonymously with them through the website before you make the decision to carpool with them. If you decide that the other person seems likely to be a good carpool match, accept the link up request and you will be able to communicate with them directly about arranging your journeys.

What is a verified member?

A verified member is someone who has joined Western Sydney Carpool and works for, studies at or is a member of a participating workplace, club or organisation. Their identity has been confirmed by their workplace, club or organisation to Western Sydney Carpool. Once notified, their membership is verified, which means that their profile will be presented with a tick.

In simple terms, when a member is shown as a verified member, you can be confident that Western Sydney Carpool has taken steps to confirm that the member is 'who they say they are'.  

I work alternate or rotating shifts – does the program cater for me?

It certainly does.  When you first register with the program, you can nominate an initial regular travel plan by Registering a Commuting Trip.  Once you have completed your registration, click on ‘Register A Commuting Trip’ and you can add additional regular travel plans.  This will allow you to register each of your regular trips to and from work, and identify matches for each of these.  (So, for example, if you work as a nurse across three regular shift patterns, register a regular travel plan for each of these shifts.) 

By linking with a number of potential carpoolers, you can communicate and organise trips for when your start and finish times vary.  You might find over time that you’ll end up with a group of people who are all making similar commutes that you can link up with! 

How much does it cost to join?

NSW registered Clubs, Groups and Workplace Organisations can take out an annual subscription to the Western Sydney Carpool.  This can be done directly by contacting us on support@communitycarpooling.com.au 

Individual NSW residents over the age of 18 can join the Westen Western Sydney Carpool by selecting JOIN and filling out the registration form.  Membership is free to individuals.  From the member home page, select Fuel and CO2 Estimates to see how much money you can save by carpooling and sharing costs of your journey.

If I link up with another Western Sydney Carpool member, do I need to commit to carpooling every day?

No!   The key to carpooling is making it work for you – flexibility and communication with your carpool partner is important. Even if you can only share your journeys one or two days a week you will still save a lot of money on fuel over a year.  If you travel 50 km a day then you could save around $375 a year in fuel based on approximately $1.45 a litre by sharing the drive just two days a week.  

What are the benefits of carpooling?

Sharing your journey is a great way to meet people, it's good for the environment, and saves you money.  Benefits include:  

  • shared travel expenses
  • save on fuel and parking costs
  • reduced traffic congestion
  • improved mobility options for non-drivers

What are the costs of carpooling?

It's important that you discuss this with your potential carpool match prior to commencing your carpool arrangement.  We suggest that drivers and passengers take alternate turns to drive, so that there is no need for financial transactions. You must be over 18 to be a member of Western Sydney Carpool.  If you do decide to carry a passenger who does not own a car then you could use our trip calculator by selecting Fuel and CO2 Estimates from the Member Home page, and arrive at an estimation of the journey cost.  To avoid any embarrassment, passengers should pay the driver before they leave the vehicle at the end of each journey, unless other arrangements have been made. Please note that drivers cannot make a profit from sharing a car as this can invalidate their insurance and impact tax. Please refer to the Terms and Conditions section. If you have any concerns please contact your insurance company directly.  

What does my Club Workplace need to do to join the program?

It’s easy – e-mail us at support@communitycarpooling.com.au.  We'll contact you with further information.   Visit the Clubs, Workplaces page for further information.

There's a little more to it for clubs and organisations but still pretty easy to manage.    E-mail us at support@communitycarpooling.com.au and we'll be happy to answer your questions.  

Is the program only open to big workplaces?

No!  Some of our participating workplaces are relatively small.

What duty of care or work health and safety considerations are there for a workplace in relation to staff commute journeys?

Very few.  The Terms and Conditions of the Western Sydney Carpool program state that ‘travel between your normal place of work and residence is considered personal travel’.

Work travel and using a work vehicle ?

Travel between your normal place of work and residence is considered personal travel. The website cannot be used to arrange work-related travel unless your employers specifically permit staff to arrange work-related travel via this website.

The use of employer provided vehicles may be subject to conditions by your employer. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are permitted by your employer to use an employer provided vehicle to carry passengers in a carpooling arrangement.

What are the insurance implications of carpooling?

Most Australian insurers state that car-sharing will not affect an individual's car insurance so long as a profit is not made. Drivers with any concerns should check with their insurance company as terms and conditions may vary between insurance providers over time. Make sure that the person you drive with has valid registration and insurance. ALL CARPOOLERS TRAVEL AT THEIR OWN RISK.

What should I discuss with a potential carpool partner?

We suggest that when you meet up for the first time to discuss your carpooling arrangements that you do so at a neutral location.  Remember, upon receiving a Link Up request from a member, you can conmmunicate with them anonymously through the website before you make any decision to accept or decline their request.  It is your decision as to whether you proceed in a carpooling arrangement or not.  

You may want to discuss:

  • how flexible are they?  Do they want to carpool most days, or just aim for two or three days a week?
  • where will you collect one another, on the journey to work and for the trip home?
  • how will you share costs?
  • how will you communicate with your carpool partner if you get called to stay at work unexpectedly? 

Remember, communication and flexibility is the key to successful carpooling arrangements!  

Also, read our FAQ’s below on the etiquette of carpooling and ensuring your safety. 

If I decide to carpool, what steps should I take to ensure my safety?

As part of Western Sydney Carpool, the safety of our members is a priority, and we have made our website as secure as we can. You must be over 18 years of age to be a member. All members' details are stored securely in the database and only the members' intended travel information can be accessed by other members. When it comes to travelling, EVERY MEMBER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS OR HER OWN SAFETY. However, we do recommend that members follow some simple security measures outlined below:

  • Avoid exchanging home addresses with your travelling companion before you meet them.
  • Arrange to meet for the first time in a neutral, public place.
  • Inform a friend or family member of who you will be travelling with, when and to where.
  • Make sure you see each other's identification - student card, carpool member card or driving licence - so you know that you're travelling with the right person.
  • You are under no obligation to go ahead with any car-share arrangement. If you have any doubts about your travelling companion, for any reason, then you don't have to travel with them.
  • It is your responsibility to check that the person you are sharing with has all the legal driving documents, such as driving licence, car insurance, and car tax (see below). 

To be responsible for your own safety, you should make an assessment of the person or people with whom you are travelling to ensure that you feel safe and comfortable. You need to satisfy yourself that the driver is not only licenced and has appropriate insurance, but also is not affected by alcohol or drugs.

Are my details kept confidential?

Yes, all information is kept totally confidential. Your personal information will be used to match you with other persons who have registered on the website. Your name, contact and vehicle registration details (if you have registered to be a driver) will remain hidden until both parties have communicated and one has accepted the Link Up request. The preferred method of communication you nominated in registration (i.e. phone, email or SMS) will be used to determine what contact details are provided to the carpool match on linkup. 

What is the etiquette of carpooling?

The Basics

Ensure vehicle registration, insurance and drivers’ licenses are valid.

Meeting up

Have pick up points in mind. When you are starting a new carpooling arrangement we recommend that you meet your travelling companions at a public place. Exchange mobile phone numbers and keep each other informed.

Don’t be late

It’s important to show common courtesy when carpooling. Once you have made a commitment, stick to it. Arrive on time, don’t make any unscheduled stops or change your destination at the last minute. Keep in touch. Phone or send a text message if you are running late – but NOT when you are driving.

Avoid personal detours

It is important to provide efficient commuting. Avoid personal detours for shopping and errands.

Think about a back-up plan

Decide on how you will get home if the driver is suddenly unavailable.  If you are the driver and you are unable to carpool on a particular day, remember to inform your carpool partner(s) as soon as possible.

Have a clean and reliable vehicle

So the journey doesn’t take longer than needed, make sure your car is in good working order and that if you breakdown you have roadside assist from a motoring organisation. Make sure your car is pleasant to travel in by maintaining a clean and tidy interior.

Drive Safely

Use safe driving techniques, stay within the posted speed limits and comply with all road traffic laws.

It’s okay to say "no"

Don’t carpool with someone unless you are comfortable doing so. There is no obligation. If you meet up and it doesn’t look like it will work out, there is no pressure to continue. Or, if a problem arises within your carpooling arrangement that you are unable to resolve, you are under no obligation to continue. Simply look for another match!

If you have any queries or concerns feel free to email us at support@communitycarpooling.com.au .