Carshare or Carpool

Car ownership is expensive — costing thousands of dollars per year– for an item that sits empty most of the day. Imagine dropping that expense.

With a little ingenuity, it’s possible to live without a car payment in Princeton.

So, how’s it done? Welcome to the world of carsharing, carpooling, and ridesharing.

Carsharing is here.

Princeton’s Spring Street garage has a few Zipcars. Use your valid driver’s license to set up an account, reserve a vehicle, and then head to the shore or the Adirondacks. When we last checked, there were several vehicles of various sizes available.

Faculty, staff, and students at Princeton University also have access to an Enterprise CarShare program, which offers more than a dozen cars scattered around campus.

Carpooling helps break the traffic bottleneck.

If you work in Central New Jersey, check out the Greater Mercer TMA’s RideShare carpooling program. This free matching service helps commuters find a suitable car- or vanpool. The companion Emergency Ride Home program ensures you have the flexibility to leave early or stay late.

Princeton University offers a similar carpool program to its employees, including a guaranteed ride home for any personal, family, or work emergencies. 

If neither of these options work for you, check with your employer and let them know about the commuter tax benefit — a great incentive for employers to assist your commute.

With a little planning, a carpool can save you money and hassle.

Ridesharing makes for a great backup plan and is now readily available in our area now. Set up an account with Lyft or Uber and arrange a ride in minutes.

Did you know?

  • Ugh, traffic. About three-quarters of Americans drive alone to work every day—that’s about 115 million cars and trucks with lots of open seats on the road every day.
  • Not always the case. In the 1970s, one in five Americans workers carpooled. Now, only one in 10 share a ride to work with colleagues. 
  • There’s a solution. The EPA estimates that each car-sharing vehicle has replaced about a dozen vehicles, all while saving riders hundreds of dollars and reducing their carbon footprint.