Energy consumption could be reduced if more people shared rides rather than driving alone, yet carpooling represents a small proportion of all potential carpoolers.
Prior research has found that many who might carpool were concerned about reduced flexibility with carpooling. If flexibility is one of the barriers, how could carpooling be organized to be more flexible?
Dorinson, Diana, Deanna Gay, Paul Minett and Susan Shaheen (2009). “Flexible Carpooling: Exploratory Study.”
TCRP Ridesharing Synthesis Report
Since the late 1990s, numerous ridematching programmes have integrated the Internet, mobile phones, and social networking into their services. Online ridematching systems are employing a range of new strategies to create “critical mass”: (1) regional and large employer partnerships, (2) financial incentives, (3) social networking to younger populations, and (4) real-time ridematching services that employ “smartphones” and automated ridematching software.