Employee Vanpool Program

Team up, Save Time, and Money: Join a Van Pool

COVID-19 suggestions for vanpooling

  • Be prepared to sanitize your vehicle whether you own or share it.
  • Disinfect anything you touch – door handles, steering wheel, controls, etc.
  • Wear face coverings while riding together.

Mason would like to assist employees who would like to join an existing vanpool or start a new one.

For an overview of vanpooling, watch the recording of a recent vanpool interest meeting held virtually at Mason in June.

How does Vanpooling work generally?

  • A vanpool consists of a minimum of 4 people to a maximum of 15 who travel together to and from work.
  • Federal rules stipulate that a vanpool must use a minimum vehicle size of 7 passengers and 80% of the mileage must be used to transport employees to and from work in trips where at least 50% of the seats (not including the driver) are occupied. This is why the minimum number for a vanpool is 4 in a 7-passenger vehicle.
  • You can use any vanpool provider in the area. For a list of vanpool providers, sign up with Vanpool Alliance.
  • To find others with whom to vanpool, visit:
  • Once you have your vehicle, riders, and a meeting location, e.g. a Park and Ride Lot, then you will:
    • Select a Vanpool Coordinator
    • Split up the driving and other vehicle responsibilities

What is the role of the Vanpool Coordinator?

  • The Vanpool Coordinator acts as the vanpool team captain
    • Recruits riders
    • Is the point of contact (and responsibility) for the Vanpool provider
    • Submits any reports required by the Vanpool provider
    • Acts as a liaison to Mason with respect to their vanpool

What do you save when you Vanpool?

  • Reduce the amount of time you’re driving
  • Use HOV lanes for free
  • Split any tolls
  • Less wear and tear on your car
  • Potential reduction in your personal auto insurance costs
  • Subsidies
  • Reduce the cost of your commute – in some cases to zero
  • Reduce C02 emissions

How much does it cost to own and operate a car?

How Does Vanpooling Work at Mason?

  • To receive the Mason subsidy of up to $270/month
    • You must be a full-time faculty or staff member
    • Obtain a WMATA SmarTrip card and register it with WMATA. Visit http://www.smartrip.com for details
    • Visit Mason’s Commonwealth Commuter Choice page to:
      • Complete the Commuter Choice Enrollment form (one time)
      • Complete your Monthly Benefit Request (due the 10th of each month or the Thursday before if the 10th falls on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday
    • Use the WMATA SmarTrip website to allocate your subsidy from your SmartTrip card to your vanpool provider
      • The allocation process has to be done initially when you join a vanpool and then only if your monthly requested amount changes
    • Vanpools do not need to pay to park at Mason; the Vanpool Coordinator (or their designee) picks up an annual permit from Parking and Transportatoin to be used by the vanpool
    • Vanpool participants can also:

Are there vanpool resources where I live?


Questions?  Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at transpo@gmu.edu.