Friday, July 03, 2020
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Life Without Subsidies: Vanpool Hawaii Announces New Group Rate
By News Release @ 9:43 PM :: 5367 Views :: Energy, Environment

VANPOOL HAWAII ANNOUNCES NEW GROUP RATE

Honolulu (June 22, 2011) — Vanpool Hawaii has announced a new monthly rate of $985 per vanpool group, effective Aug. 1. For a vanpool group of 6 or 7 passengers, that equals a per-person cost of approximately $164 or $141 per month, respectively, or less if shared between more participants.

The new flat rate is a result of the Hawaii State Department of Transportation’s June 6 announcement that it will discontinue state funding in support of the 17-year-old ridesharing program on June 30. More than 1,600 vanpoolers on Oahu, Maui, Kauai and the Big Island vanpool daily to work as a means to reduce transportation costs, mitigate traffic congestion and further energy independence.

VPSI, Inc., which has operated Vanpool Hawaii for the state since the program’s inception in 1994, has decided to continue the program despite the temporary loss of government subsidy. The average actual cost of a vanpool group is $1,300, which includes the vehicle and all coverage and services. But VPSI instituted cost containment measures to keep the new rate down to $985 — a difference of $315 per group.

“We realize this change will impact our vanpoolers’ personal finances, but we hope they will consider the savings and value that they will still receive as a Vanpool Hawaii participant compared to driving alone,” said Vicki Harris, executive director of Vanpool Hawaii. “We are willing to work with our vanpoolers on an individual group basis to discuss possible solutions to help them meet the new rate.

“We are encouraged by the state’s commitment to help us tap into available federal funds that will allow us to eventually return vanpoolers’ monthly fees at a below-market rate, but this process may take six months or more. Keeping vanpooling affordable is imperative to the program remaining an attractive transportation alternative, which will allow our vanpool fleet to grow and have an even greater impact as an alternative to single-occupant vehicles.”

Even paying the new monthly rate, vanpoolers still save significantly compared to driving alone to and from work. Vanpool groups with full ridership will still save an average of about $805 per month, or $9,660 per year, compared to driving alone.

Vanpoolers will continue to receive the same quality vehicles and current level of coverage and services under the new rate, including a 7-passenger or larger vehicle, vehicle insurance, maintenance and repairs, 24-hour on-call customer service, and administrative support. Group members will continue to share the cost of fuel and any applicable parking fees, and the driver will continue to enjoy the added benefit of having the vanpool vehicle for his or her own personal use after commute hours and on the weekends.

If vanpoolers are enrolled in the federal Transportation Incentive Program (TIP) and have 6 to 7 paying riders in their minivan, they may be eligible to take advantage of the commuter transit tax benefit of up to $230 per person per month for actual commuting costs. This is the same benefit program eligible riders use today but with higher voucher amounts to match the new rate.

Last week, VPSI gave vanpoolers a one-month reprieve from a rate increase by absorbing the cost of what would have been covered by the subsidy in July, even though state subsidy ends June 30.

“The unfortunate reality is that a number of vanpoolers may choose to leave the program because of the end of government subsidy and resulting higher rate, with some returning to the road in single-occupant vehicles,” Harris said. “For those individuals, we will understand and respect their choice but hope they will consider returning to Vanpool Hawaii when we are able to reduce rates.”

Should the new rate not be acceptable to current vanpoolers, Vanpool Hawaii is waiving the 30-day notice required of vanpoolers prior to returning their vehicles.

Operated by VPSI, Inc., Vanpool Hawaii has served the commuting needs of hundreds of residents, military personnel, businesses and government organizations. For more information, call 596-VANS (8267) or 1-800-VAN-RIDE, or visit www.VanpoolHawaii.com.

# # #

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

808 Silent Majority

808 State Update AM940

ABCDEFG Blog

ACA Signups Hawaii

ACCE

ALEC

Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Life Advocates

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

American Mothers of Hawaii

AMVETS-Hawaii

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Audit The Rail

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii 

Blaisdell Memorial Project

Broken Trust 

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

CAFR Hawaii

Castaway Conservative

Children's Alliance Hawaii

Children's Rights Institute

ChinaTownWatch.com

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Citizens for Recall

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

Coffee Break

CSIS Pacific Forum

DAR Hawaii

DeedySupport.com

DVids Hawaii

E Hana Kakou Kelii Akina

E Māua Ola i Moku o Keawe

Farmers For Choice Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Follow the Money Hawaii

Frank in Hawaii

Front Page Magazine

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Get Off Your Butts!

God, Freedom, America

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aganst Assisted Suicide

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crime Victims' Rights

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defending Marriage

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Firearm Community

Hawaii Fishermen's Alliance

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii Meth Project

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Right to Life -- Big Island

Hawaii Right to Life -- Oahu

Hawaii Shield Law Coalition

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

Heritage Foundation

HI Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

HIEC.Coop 

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Homeless Crisis

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

Horns of Jericho Blog

House Minority Blog

House Republican Caucus YouTube

HPACC

Hump Day Report

I Vote Hawaii

If Hawaii News

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Iowa Meets Maui

Jackson v Abercrombie

Jihad Watch

July 4 in Hawaii

Kahle v New Hope

Kakaako Cares

Kau TEA Party

Kauai Co GOP

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

KeyWiki

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Middle East Forum--The Legal Project

Mililani Conservatives for Change

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

Muslim Brotherhood in America

NAMI Hawaii

NARTH

Natatorium.org

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

National Wind Watch

New Hawaiian

New Zeal

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Northwest Economic Policy Seminar

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

Now What I Really Think

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

ObamaCare Abortion Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

OurFutureHawaii.com

Pacific Aviation Museum

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons 

Pro-GMO Hawaii

P.U.E.O.

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Republican Party -- Hawaii State

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

SIFE Remington

SIFE W. Oahu 

Sink the Jones Act

Smart About Marijuana--Hawaii

St Marianne Cope

State Budget Solutions Hawaii

State Policy Network

Statehood for Guam

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Harriet Tubman Agenda

The Long War Journal

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Truth About Trade & Technology - Hawaii

UCC Truths

Union Members Know Your Rights

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

Valor in the Pacific

VAREP Honolulu

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii

Yes2TMT