Make Money Commuting with Zebigo

August 12, 2011

2:33 pm

Americans spend an average of 50 minutes per day engaged in an activity that increases both carbon emissions and frustration levels. This activity is our daily commute, and it’s clogging our roadways and costing us a small fortune.

What if you could swap your typical commute for reduced stress, a lighter carbon footprint, and friendly conversation–all while earning some extra cash?

Zebigo is an app that aims to improve commutes by making them more communal. Zebigo matches carpool drivers with riders who take the same route and allows them to reduce the cost of getting to and from work each day. And with Zebigo, drivers can say hello to the carpool lane for faster commutes.

Riders can find a car within minutes of leaving for their trip. They pay drivers based on mileage, plus a 49-cent fee to Zebigo, and the entire process happens on their smartphones through email and text messaging.

To keep everyone safe, both riders and drivers can choose to ride with background checked users, coworkers from their company, or even a particular gender only. They’re also rated and reviewed on Zebigo’s website. As they build their reputation on the website, repeat carpoolers can create a network of fellow commuters, all while diffusing their own costs.

Online ride-sharing services, such as PickupPal and Zimride, are sprouting up around the globe to help you green your commute. Just last month, I wrote about GobiCab, which allows people to share a taxi cab as well.

The idea of sharing rides to cut down on costs is nothing new.  Commuters in places like Washington, D.C. have been slugging, a sort of grassroots-style car sharing, for years. What is new is the way innovators and mobile technology are coming together to make the process more convenient, organized and safe, hopefully leading to a critical mass in ride sharing.

Would you be open to using a ride sharing service such as Zebigo? Let us know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

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Meg Rayford is a communications consultant based in Northern Virginia. She previously spent two years as the Director of Public Relations for a nonprofit startup, where she learned a lot about providing clean water for impoverished countries, even within the confines of a bootstrapped startup.

She is the editor of Tech Cocktail, and she develops media strategies for companies in Washington, DC and Virginia. You can read her most recent work in the marketing chapter of the upcoming book, “Social Innovation and Impact in Nonprofit Leadership,” which will be published in Spring 2014 by Springer Publishing. Follow her @megkrayford.

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