Sustainable Transportation for Faculty and Staff
Employees are welcome to participate in all relevant sustainable transportation events and programs such as carpooling, bicycling, walking, transit use, and riding the River Hawk Roadster. In addition, there are some programs, listed below, which are available exclusively for university employees.
Emergency Ride Home
University employees who take a sustainable mode of transportation two days per week or more are eligible to sign up for a free Emergency Ride Home program. When you sign up, you can be reimbursed for a taxi or car rental home up to four times per year in the event of an illness or family emergency involving you or a member of your carpool. Sign up at www.commute.com today!
Pre-Tax Transit Deductions
Benefited employees can pay for up to $245 per month of transit expenses with pre-tax dollars deducted directly from your paycheck. Sign up at the Benefits Strategies Qualified Transportation Benefits Plan. Under department code, scroll down to "UMASS-LOWELL." When you enroll, you will be sent a debit card which will be loaded each month with the amount of money you have opted to deduct from your paycheck. You can use the debit card to purchase transit tickets from the MBTA, LRTA or MVRTA. There is a $1.50 per month fee, which will be deducted in pre-tax dollars, and you can change your enrollment amount at any time. See Frequently Asked Questions or speak with Benefits Strategies customer service at 877-353-9442 for more information.
Zipcar for Departments
Zipcar is an on-campus, on-demand, car rental service which lets you rent by the hour or by the day, with the price of gas, insurance, and car maintenance included. Zipcars are located on campus and can be unlocked with a membership card after making a reservation online or on your smart phone. Your department can create an account which university employees can then join and use in lieu of mileage reimbursement, keeping miles off personal vehicles and enabling employees who walk, bicycle, carpool, and take transit to work to have an option when they need to drive for work-related trips.
Joining an existing departmental account - Go to www.zipcar.com/uml/ and click on "Join Now" under "I'd Like to Join my Department's Existing Account." It usually takes about one week to get approved and receive your membership card in the mail. If you don't see your department listed, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 978-934-1866 to have one set up.
Setting up a departmental account – When you set up an account for your department, employees who join Zipcar will be able to bill that departmental account whenever they use a Zipcar to make a work-related trip. Zipcar will bill your department directly for each trip. Cars on campus rent at rates starting around $7, including gas. Your department will also be charged a $25 annual membership fee for each person who joins. In many cases, using Zipcar will cost the same or less as mileage reimbursement, but departments should make a determination of cost on a case-by-case basis – the Zipcar website will give you a price for a whole trip before you finalize each car reservation.
Sign up today at www.zipcar.com/uml/