Carpool the West
144
Registered Carpoolers

FAQ

GENERAL

What is Carpool the West and who can join?

Why carpool?  

What journeys can I share from the Western Melbourne region?

Can I view Carpool the West from my mobile device?  

I've signed up. Now what?

Priority Parking and Membership Cards

What is a verified member?

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

How do I get matched with other Carpool the West members?

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

Do I need to commit to carpooling every day?

If I've previously declined a Link Up request from someone, will they still be presented to me as a potential match?  

WORKPLACES

Workplace, club or organisation commitment

Staff commute journeys - Workplace duty of care/work health and safety considerations?

Work travel and using a work vehicle?

THINGS TO CONSIDER

How do I work out the shared costs of carpooling?

What are the insurance implications of carpooling?

What should I discuss with a potential carpool partner?

What do I do if my carpool partner can't meet their obligation to take me home?   

I have a P1 licence.  What should I consider when establishing a carpooling arrangement?  

Carpooling etiquette

GENERAL

What is Carpool the West and who can join?

Carpool the West is an initiative lead by Wyndham City Council. It is developed and delivered in partnership with participating organisations.

If you are making a similar journey at similar times of day – then it makes sense to share the ride. Carpooling is generally an arrangement made between people who do not live together but are travelling in the same direction at the same time and want to travel in a single car.

Costs may be shared but the person driving should not make a profit from carpooling.  

The program is currently open to employees (and students where relevant) of participating organisations over the age of 18.

If you would like to join, please have your workplace, club or organisation complete this form.

Why carpool?

Carpooling has a number of individual and community benefits:

  • Save money by splitting the costs of your journey.
  • Reduce the wear and tear on your car, and your carbon footprint. 
  • You can be a passenger instead of being the driver. 
  • Reduce the amount of traffic on the road. 
  • Reduce parking pressures at your destination point. 

What journeys can I share from the Western Melbourne region?

Your destinations are unlimited with Carpool the West region.  For example, you may find other members frequently travelling to destinations such as one of its current partnering participating organisations:

  • Wyndham City Council
  • Victoria University
  • Brimbank City Council
  • Mercy Health
  • Maribyrnong City Council
  • Melton City Council
  • VIC Roads
  • Southern Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust
  • Western Health

Can I view Carpool the West from my mobile device?

Yes the website has been optimized for easy use and viewing on iPhone and Android mobile devices.  

I’ve signed up. Now what?

Once you have logged in, you can Register a Commuting Trip and then make sure you indicate which workplace, club or organisation you're with and then search for potential carpool matches or events you can carpool to. If there is a member whose profile details match, send them a Link Up request – you can communicate anonymously with them through the website before making the decision to carpool. If the other person seems likely to be a good carpool match, accept the Link Up request and you can communicate directly about arranging your journeys.

All information is kept confidential. Your name, contact and vehicle registration details will remain hidden until both parties have communicated and a Link Up request has been accepted. The preferred method of communication you nominated when registering will be used to determine what contact details are provided to the carpool match on linkup. 

Use the Test Drive function for a step by step demonstration of this process.

Priority Parking and Membership Cards

Members will only receive a membership card once a commuting trip has been registered or they join an event under ‘My Upcoming Events’ on your Member Home page.  Keep your card handy – other members may ask to sight it when you commence carpooling with them, and you will use it to make use of priority parking spaces.  

If your organisation is offering priority parking spaces for Carpool the West your workplace/club/organisation's carpool representative will have the details of where this spot(s) is located. 

Every carpool member that uses the priority carpool space on any particular day MUST leave their card on the dashboard of that vehicle.  This is to ensure more than one person has used the car for commuting that day.

If your workplace/club/organisation does offer priority carpool parking you will also be sent a windscreen Carpool the West sticker with your membership card.

Please allow for up to a month before your membership card and/or windscreen sticker arrive in the mail, if you do not receive it directly from your carpool representative.

What is a verified member?

The safety of Carpool the West members is a priority. A verified member works for, studies at; or is a member of a participating workplace, club or organisation. Their identity has been confirmed by their organisation to Carpool the West.

Verification

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

As part of Carpool the West, the safety of our members is a priority, including the security of the website.   We recommend that members follow some simple personal safety measures:

  • 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 about 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.
  • 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 carpooling with has all the legal driving documents, such as driving licence and car insurance. 
  • Do not travel with your carpool partner if they are affected by alcohol or drugs.

If you are in any doubt as to whether a vehicle is registered, it is always advisable to check online on the VicRoads website.

How do I get matched with other Carpool the West members?

The system uses Google Maps to search for a suitable match.

If you are in the Western Melbourne region, Carpool the West will match you with other members who are within an approximately 3km radius of your origin point and whose destination is within a 3km radius of yours.  It will also match you with other members who live along the first 30km of your route.  

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

Once logged in, 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’ once more 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 journey.  For example, if you work across three regular shift patterns, register a regular travel plan for each of these shifts. 

You might find over time that you’ll end up with a group of people who are all rotating through similar shift patterns that you can link up with.

Do I need to commit to carpooling every day?

Not at all.   The key to carpooling is making it work for you – flexibility and communication with your carpool partner is important. 

If I’ve previously declined a Link Up request from someone, will they still be presented to me as a potential match? 

No.  Once you’ve declined a Link Up request from someone, the system will remove that person from any future potential carpool matches. If you have done it accidentally contact us.

WORKPLACES 

Workplace, club or organisation commitment

The ongoing responsibilities for a workplace, club or organisation are minimal.  Workplaces, clubs or organisations will need to nominate a contact person for the system to reach when you are verifying new membership applications, and also provide a logo (if you have one) for listing on our ‘participating workplaces, clubs and organisations’ page. New organisations will be asked to contribute an annual sum towards maintenance and promotion of the scheme.   Approved organisations can nominate a representative to take part in the Project Group meetings which help to steer to project.  E-mail us at carpoolthewest@wyndham.vic.gov.au  for more information.

Staff Communte journeys - Workplace duty of care/work health and safety considerations?

Very few.  The Terms and Conditions of the Carpool the West 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 employer specifically permits staff to arrange work-related travel via this website.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are permitted to use an employer provided vehicle to carry passengers in a carpooling arrangement.

THINGS TO CONSIDER

How do I work out the shared costs of carpooling?

We suggest that drivers and passengers take alternate turns to drive, so that there is no need for financial transactions.

If you decide to carpool with someone who does not own a car then you could use the trip calculator, by clicking on Fuel and CO2 Estimates under a registered trip, for an estimation of the journey cost.   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. If you have any concerns please contact your insurance company directly.   

What are the insurance implications of carpooling?

Most Australian insurers state that car-sharing will not affect an individual's car insurance where a profit is not being made. Drivers with any concerns should check with their insurance company. 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?

When you receive a Link Up request from a member, you can communicate with them anonymously through the website before you make a decision to accept or decline their request.

If you would like to meet your carpool partner in person to discuss carpool arrangements consider doing this in a neutral location.

You may want to discuss:

  • how flexible they are 
  • which days they wish to carpool
  • where will your pick up/ drop off location be
  • how will you share costs
  • how will you communicate with your carpool partner if your plans change

Communication and flexibility are key for successful carpooling arrangements!   

What do I do if my carpool partner can’t meet their obligation to take me home?

The key to a successful carpooling arrangement is flexibility and communication. If you cannot guarantee that you can carpool with your partner on a particular day, make sure that you communicate this as soon as practical. In any situation, you should ensure that your family or friends know that you are carpooling.  You may want to discuss back up options with them should your carpooling arrangement fail at some point.

Some workplaces/clubs/organisations may offer emergency CabCharge cards for once-off unavoidable change in travel plan.  Please contact yor organisation carpool representative to enquire if this is offered at your workplace/club/organisation and what their policies are.

Altrnatively, please make use of the Journey Planner page of Public Transport Victoria

I have a P1 licence.  What should I consider when establishing a carpooling arrangement?

Holders of P1 licences in Victoria cannot drive with any more than one passenger aged 16-22 at any time, unless an experienced driver is seated next to them or they meet exemption criteria.  A qualified supervising driver must have an unconditional licence authorising the person to drive a Class C vehicle (or an equivalent foreign licence as approved by the Registrar of Motor Vehicles), and must have held an unconditional/full licence for the last two years without disqualification.  For more details, visit the VicRoads website

CARPOOLING ETIQUETTE

The Basics

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

Meeting up

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.

Be on time

It’s important to show common courtesy when carpooling.  Arrive on time, avoid personal detours or changing your destination at the last minute. Keep in touch. Call or send a text message if you are running late – but NOT when you are driving.

Back-up plan

Decide on how you will get home if your carpool partner is suddenly unavailable.  In any situation, you should ensure that your family or friends know that you are carpooling.  You may want plan some back up options should your carpooling arrangement fail at some point.

Please see section above: What to do if my carpool partner can't meet their obligation to take me home?

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 break down you have roadside assist from a motoring organisation. Make sure your car is pleasant to travel in by maintaining a clean and tidy interior.carpoolthewest@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Drive Safely

Use safe driving techniques, stay within the posted speed limits and comply with all road traffic laws. Visit VicRoads for information on safe driving tips.

It’s okay to say "no"

Don’t carpool with someone unless you are comfortable doing so. If you meet up and it doesn’t look like it will work out, there is no pressure to continue. Simply look for another match.

In an emergency please contact the appropriate emergency service.

Any serious breaches to etiquette, safety, inappropriate behaviour may result in banning of membership, immediate banning of accounts and/or referral to the police.

All carpoolers travel at their own risk

If you have any queries or concerns feel free to email us at carpoolthewest@wyndham.vic.gov.au