Starting an Employer Vanpool Program

Employers and their employees can enjoy a wide variety of benefits when they add vanpooling to their commute options.  Employers and employees alike can both save on payroll taxes and reduce single occupancy vehicle trips in their region.

Employers can draw from a larger pool of talent that won’t need to rely on their own vehicle or may not have access to public transit. Employees can enjoy a customized commute to work – whether vanpooling directly, extending public transit, or driving to a park-and-ride and skipping the traffic for the rest of their commute.

Employers have options when offering vanpools to their employees and in some cases can actually save money through vanpooling.  Employers can first start with awareness and interest in vanpooling among their employees and then expand into offering transportation fringe benefits as well as operating their own fleet.

Awareness and Route Interest

If your company does not already offer vanpooling then the first step is to determine how interested your employees are in vanpool commuting and discovering common commute patterns and routes.

MagicBus can help survey your employees commuting habits to determine where your vanpools should pick up.  Our rider app lets your employees pick their preferred commute.  This commute survey data can then be used to plan vanpool routes and get vans on the road.

Incentives for Employers and Commuters

In addition to flexibility and customized routing – vanpool commuters may also be eligible for federal commuting benefits.  Employers can also find payroll tax savings when offering transportation fringe benefits to their employees that use vanpools.

Transportation Benefits

Companies can offer up to $265 a month in pre-tax transportation benefits.  Employees can use the pre-tax transportation compensation to pay for vanpools and other similar services.  Employers benefit from paying a lower payroll tax for the reduced post-tax compensation.  Employees get the transit benefits as well as paying less of their overall compensation to payroll taxes.

Payroll Tax Savings for Employers

Commuter benefits are a pre-tax fringe benefit so employers and employees can lower their tax burden by using pre-tax money for commuting with vanpools.  Employees get paid the same gross salary but the commuter benefits lower the taxable salary which can help offset overall commuting costs.

Vans: Buy, Lease, or Contract?

Employers may have a couple of options for the actual vans that will transport their employees to work. Larger employers with multiple routes may benefit from purchasing their own vans themselves.  Companies may be able to benefit from incentives and subsidies for electric vans and the associated chargers.

Instead of owning the vans directly companies can also lease a van fleet or contract with a van provider for vehicles.  This can substantially reduce overhead costs while still providing flexibility to grow your program by simply leasing or contracting more vans.

Employers may also be able to tap into local or regional transportation management associations to get access to vans for little or no expense.  Transportation Management Associations and transit agencies may already have vanpool programs and fleets ready to go or can help employers launch a new vanpool program with regional or federal incentives.

Get Riding

Once employers have acquired the vans and planned the appropriate routes they can begin offering vanpool transportation to their employees. MagicBus can enable employers to easily manage their vanpool program.  The MagicBus platform includes route crowdsourcing to get started, a rider-friendly app to get your employees where they need to go everyday, and a reporting dashboard to manage and report on your vanpool program.

Get in touch with MagicBus today to schedule a demo or learn more about building your vanpool fleet and the incentives available for you and your employees.

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