Your Complete Guide to Zimride: rideshare for Companies and Universities

When you and your peers are headed in the same direction almost every day of the week, carpooling only makes sense. However, finding a trusted group to share a ride with often proves to be a difficult task when you don’t know everyone in your organization — and you certainly don’t have a map of where they live either. This is where Zimride comes in to help.

Zimride by Enterprise is a private rideshare service that connects riders and drivers who are taking similar daily commutes to work or to school. Whether you’re looking to save money, earn money, or help your employees get more productive, your needs may be met by this unique carsharing platform.

Continue reading to learn all about Zimride, including how businesses and drivers can take advantage of the service.

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What Is Zimride?

Zimride homepage screenshot

Zimride is a secure rideshare platform that helps employees and students get matched to peers who are headed on the same route at the same time. The ride matching service partners directly with businesses and universities to create private networks for their stakeholders, helping them find drivers or find riders who are willing to pitch in for a ride.

Before Zimride became the service it is today, you might have known it as a long-distance carshare company or even the company that created Lyft. This is because co-founders Logan Green and John Zimmer originally envisioned intercity ride matching as their next big idea. When this long-distance ride matching didn’t meet their expected adoption rates, Zimride began to focus on shorter distance ride matching and eventually more traditional rideshare.

When the latter took off, the co-founders decided to solely focus on this arm of the company, soon launching Lyft. With the successful launch of Lyft, Green and Zimmer sold the remainder of Zimride to Enterprise Holdings in 2013. By 2015, Zimride by Enterprise had fully transitioned into the private, organization-based transportation service it is today.

How Zimride Works for Businesses and Universities

Open concept office space filled with people working at desks

Through Zimride, businesses and universities gain a more manage manageable alternative to vanpool programs, which require significant van maintenance. In addition, your organization can benefit from decreases in parking spot needs and on-campus traffic. At the same time, your stakeholders will appreciate the affordable alternative to popular rideshare platforms, parking permits, and unorganized carpools.

When you bring Zimride to your organization, you receive a branded landing page, much like this school page for University of California San Francisco or this business page for Verizon. Through this landing page, employees and students can access their network by using their business or .edu email accounts, then post or find rides. Using Zimride reduces your carbon footprint and increases your employees’ productivity, according to their homepage.

Unlike Lyft and Uber, which are proven causes of traffic congestion, this rideshare service will help you reduce congestion in your parking lots and promote your company’s sustainable practices. To help your program receive high adoption rates among your commuters, Zimride further offers dedicated rideshare support and marketing materials.

How Zimride Works for Drivers

Closeup of Tesla steering wheel

While Zimride once accepted public driver sign-ups, Enterprise Holdings’ transformation of the company into a fully private service means that only members of Zimride’s partner organizations can earn money by driving with the company.

If you’re part of a business or university that offers Zimride services, you can easily start making money by posting your commute and listing yourself as a driver instead of a passenger. Users in your network who are searching for rides in a similar route can then request to join your ride. You’ll be paid via PayPal for your completed trips every week.

One of the most beneficial parts of driving with Zimride passengers, rather than driving with Uber or Lyft, is that it’s a truly low-commitment opportunity to earn. Instead of going out of your way for several hours a week and getting an eligible vehicle to drive, you can simply make a few extra stops on your way to work or on your ride home to pick up some extra cash.

Plus, your riders’ affiliation with your organization, as well as Zimride’s social network integrations, ensure two-way safety. Rather than just the driver being fully screened, your coworkers will have already gone through your company’s background checks, too.

In addition, drivers can actually choose what they earn. Zimride will provide suggested prices for your ride, but at the end of the day, you’re allowed to charge as little or as much as you want. However, it is important to note that Zimride is practically impossible to turn into a full-time gig or a high-paying part-time gig. Lyft and Uber are far better options for someone who wants to earn a serious income from a side gig.

How to Sign Up for Zimride

Zimride application for your organization

For Businesses or Universities

If you’re a business owner or university official who wants to bring Zimride to your location, you’ll first need to set up a meeting with one of Zimride’s rideshare specialists. To do so:

  1. Head to Zimride.com.
  2. Tap “Become a Zimrider” on the top bar.
  3. Tap “Contact Zimride.”
  4. Complete the form by filling out your name, email, and information about your organization. Then, tap “Send.”

Your rideshare specialist will become your primary point of contact as you set up and grow your Zimride network.

For Riders and Drivers

Once your organization has a private Zimride network set up, you can start saving or start earning. If you’re unsure if Zimride is an offered benefit at your workplace or school, tap on the “Networks” tab on Zimride.com to search for your organization name. Existing organizations will appear with a hyperlink directly to your dedicated network.

As soon as you’re sure that your organization offers Zimride, follow these steps to sign up for your dual rider and driver account:

  1. Head to your organization’s branded Zimride page.
  2. Tap “Sign Up” and join with your business or .edu email. Some organizations may allow you to directly log in with your company account.
  3. Follow any steps for authentication that you’re prompted to complete.

Once you’re logged into your Zimride platform, you can begin to post rides as a rider or a driver, or find existing carpools to join.

Frequently Asked Questions

Three people standing in front of a green Mercedes

Zimride is an extremely helpful resource for any employee or student who wants to meet their financial goals, and an enticing benefit for businesses to offer. If you’re still wondering if Zimride is an opportunity you want to sign up for, consider our answers to these frequently asked questions:

1. Where is Zimride available?

Zimride is available for businesses and universities all across the United States. Its most prominent presence is in California, where the company was originally founded.

2. Can I still get matched to long-distance trips with Zimride?

Yes. Since Zimride mainly functions as a ride matching service, it doesn’t place restrictions on where your car or your driver’s car can go. However, it’s important to note that Zimride did end its focus on intercity trips due to low adoption rates. This means you’re far less likely to find a match if you’re riding an hour or more away. Of course, it never hurts to post your commute, since a listing won’t cost you money.

3. My organization doesn’t have Zimride. Can I join a nearby company’s network with their permission?

For safety and security reasons, only people with approved email domains can join each Zimride network. Even if you receive written permission from a company to join, they must provide you with a matching email in order for you to take advantage of the Zimride rideshare service.

Earn Extra on Your Route

Picking up a few extra riders each day can mean picking up hundreds of extra dollars each year. With Zimride, drivers with full-time jobs and no time for a side gig can pocket extra cash on their way to and from work. At the same time, the organizations that provide these services help employees and students feel financially secure and motivated each day.

Zimride has played a huge role in developing the rideshare industry, and it’s continuing to evolve as one of the most successful private rideshare companies out there. However, if the company’s exclusivity prevents you from earning as a driver, learn how to become a Lyft driver instead to see the opportunities that Zimride’s former service now provides.