Ridebuzz Userguide

 Ridesharing Userguide

What is Ridebuzz?
Ridebuzz is a non-profit organization located in Western Massachusetts that seeks to create a wider carpooling network and opportunities for those who do not have access to transportation by connecting drivers and passengers through our free, online web based community, thereby saving money, conserving energy, and reducing pollution.

Put more simply:
• Find a Ride
• Share a Ride
• Save $$ on Fuel Costs
• Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Read more here.
Read the Ridebuzz mission statement here.

What are the benefits of ride sharing?
Ridesharing cuts both emissions and costs! Between two people, commuters can save $3,300 annually in gas costs alone! Imagine, if everyone were to share rides there would be HALF the number of cars on the road, drastically reducing traffic congestion and pollution! Ride sharing offers you time to relax, studies have found that people who ride share typically are less stressed! You’ll have someone to chat with on your commute, time to listen to some music or drink coffee, and most of all enjoy a new experience knowing that you are saving time, money, and cutting down on pollution!

Is Ridebuzz right for me?
YES! Everyone can use our site, whatever your age and whether you have a car or not! All it takes is the desire to go places and share new experiences, and a few minutes to simply register and create a post about the next place you’ll be driving or would like to share a ride to! Many new members make the mistake of not posting after creating an account - we highly encourage you to put yourself out there and start saving gas, one ride at a time!

Is Ridebuzz free?
Yes, using the site is completely free for the public! We recommend sharing the cost of fuel, but overall Ridebuzz will save you significant money on travel! Two people traveling in one car can save upwards of $3,300 dollars annually on their commute through consistent ridesharing! If you're an organization, event planner, venue, or TMA looking to provide a rideshare system for your community, please contact us about getting started.

How do I get started on Ridebuzz?
The first step is to register and create an account. You cannot post on Ridebuzz unless you are a member. You can register here.

After filling out the simple form, we will send you an email that will have a link to follow which will allow you full access to the website. You will be prompted to edit your brief profile, feel free to personalize this at your whim! This will serves as a brief introduction to your prospective-fellow-passengers, so have fun!

Posting a ride:
You can post a ride here. In order to post a ride, you must be logged in!

Fill in the information on the form as follows:

  • Title your ride (e.g. “Northampton to Logan Airport - Boston) and chose whether your ride is offered or needed
  • Enter the date you will be traveling
  • Specify exact location
  • Will you be willing/able to help a disabled person?
  • Do you have a bike rack?
  • Would you like to be notified if someone offers a similar ride or posts searching for something similar?
  • Will this ride be a one time or recurring event (a commute or regular trip)?
  • Enter any notes you feel are pertinent (e.g. “I’ll bring yummy snacks”, or “I’m allergic to fragrances”)
  • Select audience. We recommend selecting any groups you may want to notify, as well as leaving the post public in order to maximize your chances of finding a ride.
  • Hit “Submit”!


Editing/Deleting a post:
To edit/delete a post, click “My Profile” and scroll down, there will be a complete listing of posts you have published. You can also click the "Track" link to see all your postings.

Matches:
Once you submit a post, you will immediately be matched with any rides that match your criteria. You will be emailed by Ridebuzz if new rideshare opportunities are posted that match yours own post, and individuals will be able to message you within the system (you can provide your email or phone number in the notes section if you are comfortable with this) in response to your posting.

Searching for rides:
Don’t want to post? On the Ridebuzz main page you can enter search criteria, browse through other posts, and contact the posters individually.

Sending a message:
You can send a private Ridebuzz message either by clicking “Contact user” at the bottom of their post, or by clicking “My Inbox” and “Write a new message”. Or just click here.

What are Ridebuzz groups and how do I join?
Ridebuzz provides smaller groups for different organizations and events, which allow you to post more privately on select boards viewable just to members. This makes finding a ride with a certain community of people much faster and more simple.

A good example of the use of groups on Ridebuzz is the student groups. When you join Ridebuzz, if you are a student and enter your .edu email address, you will automatically be added to the “All Colleges Ridebuzz Group”, as well as a group that is specific to your school. There you will find lots of other students from your area who are seeking/offering rides!

If your school is not on the list already, please let us know!

What is “My Buddylist”?
Your Ridebuzz “Buddylist” is a simple method of keeping track of those friends and contacts on the website who make up your ride share community! Don’t have any buddies? That’s really sad. Invite friends! The only way we can make ride sharing more popular is if we offer more rides, which is where your help is vital! Send an invite, save a gallon of gasoline, and make a couple friends!

What are Ridebuzz “User Points”?
These are basically a way for us (and you!) to see how frequently you use Ridebuzz, for every post you get an allotted amount of points.

How is Ridebuzz affiliated with Craigslist?
We’re not, but we want to maximize your chances of getting from Point A to Point B, so we have added a section for craigslist rides as well (to see them click here).

NOTE: Craigslist is a totally different site, though we’ve linked their postings onto our own. If and when you contact a craigslist user about a ride you will no longer be using the Ridebuzz website.

Is Ridebuzz safe to use?
Like any other social network, you are interacting with strangers, and we advise you to use precaution. Be smart! Also, remember you will be sitting in a car with someone, which is not pleasant if you are not comfortable with the person you are sharing the vehicle with. Be safe, bring a cell phone, or tell a friend you are doing a ride share. That said, be open, have fun, and enjoy the ride!

How private is my information?
Very. Unless you chose to give it out, your name and email will never be published or given to another Ridebuzz user. Your profile is also entirely as private as you chose to make it. Your posts however have varying degrees of privacy - you can make it so only specific groups can see your posting, or so that even unregistered visitors to the site can see, depending on your levels of comfort/need for a ride.

Ridebuzz on Twitter:
When you post on Ridebuzz, our Twitter account will automatically “tweet” your post to our followers, thereby increasing your chances of finding a ride! You can find us on Twitter here!

Is there such a thing as ridesharing etiquette?
Absolutely! Be aware and respectful of the person you are sharing a ride with, just as you would in a normal social situation. Sharing rides is an opportunity to work together to save money and cut emissions. If they are allergic to fragrances, don’t wear perfume. If you want to bring your lapdog, make sure it’s alright with the person you’re riding with.

It is also normal to share the costs of gas. For long drives, we suggest discussing this beforehand, money can be an uncomfortable issue for people. Remember: the more passengers in the car, the cheaper the overall cost, the smaller the carbon footprint!

This is great! I love Ridebuzz! What can I do to help out?
Post Ridebuzz to your Facebook page and Twitter!
Invite your friends to join Ridebuzz!
Print out some flyers and put some up around town! Then, if you’re still interesting in doing more, send us a message and get involved! We’d love your help!

How do I delete my Ridebuzz account?
If you would like to delete your account, please send a message here. If you can include a brief description as to why you are deleting your account, it would be much appreciated.

How do I change my email on Ridebuzz?
Go to "My Profile" (there is a button on the sidebar linking to that) and click "Edit". There you will have the options to change your email, password, and upload a picture.