Little known carpooling program to help students save money

by | Oct 21, 2016 | News

Kasie DaSilva

General News Reporter

Humber College students are turning to carpooling as a way to bypass congested traffic and lack of parking around school.

Humber has teamed up with Metrolinx to launch the Smart Commute program to help students cut the costs of their commutes by up to $200 a month on gas and car maintenance by carpooling.

The Smart Commute program helps people find others in the same area with similar class schedules that are also looking to carpool.

Manager of Transportation and Parking James Irvine says Humber currently has three staff and student carpool groups using Smart Commute.

But due to a lack of advertising around school, students and staff appear to be relatively unaware of the program. As a result, they are still making their own carpooling groups, without help from Smart Commute.

Humber graduate Greg Malone said he carpooled all three years he went to college.

“I carpooled with two other students and it saved us all a ton of money by splitting gas and parking costs,” Malone said.

Humber also offers the Emergency Ride Home Program that is available to students and staff that are enrolled in Smart Commute. If something causes a carpooler to leave early, Smart Commute will reimburse the affected person for up to $75 for a ride home.

Despite the program’s perks, students are still wishing there were more options for an easier commute.

Television Broadcast student Nico Maher wishes there was a bus that would go downtown as many students commute from that part of the city.

“A lot of us Humber students live downtown, and TTC is unreliable. If there was a Humber bus around Queen and Spadina, it would make commuting a lot easier,” Maher said.

Humber’s Office of Sustainability says it is aware students and staff are not well aware of the Smart Commute program and plans to change that in the upcoming months.

“There will be a meeting held later in November to strategize on additional ways to promote the program for both staff and students.” Irvine said.