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Your employees are keys to your success. As traffic congestion, fuel costs and travel times increase, offering alternatives to improve mobility enables employers to attract and to retain high-quality employees, helping them achieve a manageable and satisfying work-life balance. 511NY Rideshare can provide smarter, more efficient choices for greater employee mobility.
Employer-sponsored commuter benefit programs can include ridematching services, vanpools, transit trip planning support, bike/walk-to-work programs, shuttles to/from nearby train/bus stations, telework, flextime, compressed workweek programs, relocation services, parking management and a Guaranteed Ride Program.
511NY Rideshare can help you develop a comprehensive commuter benefit program customized to your work site or simply provide information about commute and travel options to your employees. The choice is yours. We’re here to provide services and programs for employers to create and sustain successful commuter benefit programs.
To get started, browse our site, call 511 and say “Rideshare” or email info@511NYRideshare.org.
Employer-sponsored commuter benefit programs assist employers and employees. When you help your employees get to work with less stress and expense, you increase productivity, foster loyalty and save money.
Federal tax law (Section 132 [f] of the Internal Revenue Code), allows employers to offer transit passes or vanpool subsidies to employees and allows employees to set aside pretax income to pay for transit or vanpool fares. Employees may set aside up to $245 a month from their salaries before taxes to pay for transit and vanpool fares, and up to $245 per month for qualified parking expenses at or near an employer’s workplace from which the employee commutes via transit or vanpool. The transit and parking benefit may be combined for a total benefit amount up to $490 per month. Transit services, publicly or privately owned or operated, and employer-provided or sponsored vanpools qualify under the tax-exempt program.
Providing pretax commuter benefits to employees can save payroll taxes for employers. The value of the benefit paid to employees is considered a tax-free transportation fringe benefit; therefore, payroll taxes do not apply. Employers can save roughly 9 percent in payroll taxes on the amount employees set aside. If the employer chooses to offer the benefit in addition to salary, giving an employee $245 in transit benefits turns out to be less expensive for an employer than raising the employee’s salary by $245.
The commuter tax benefit is available only through an employer-sponsored commuter benefit program. Starting a program is easy: 511NY Rideshare can help find the right one. Whether you choose to offer a tax-free transit benefit, a pretax payroll deduction program or a combination of the two, it’s a win-win for your employees and your bottom line.
Once your program is launched, 511NY Rideshare can help you to encourage enrollment and participation through our complementary programs, such as Guaranteed Ride Program and transit trip planning, creating an incentive for employees to enroll.
Whether you subsidize your employees’ commuting costs or simply make benefits programs available so they can pay for commuting costs with pretax dollars, you’ll receive substantial value and savings by providing pretax commuter benefits. If you are a New York City or Long Island-based company, you may also qualify for a grant. Click here for more information.
To get started, call 511 and say “Rideshare.”
Q. Is my company eligible for help from 511NY Rideshare?
A. Yes, 511NY Rideshare offers many free services, retention programs and financial assistance to all New York employers and organizations.
Q. How much time is needed for an initial 511NY Rideshare consultation?
A. An initial consultation typically takes about 30 minutes; some follow-up meetings may be necessary. We’ll spend as much time on-site as needed to get your commuter benefits programs up and running.
Q. What on-site assistance does 511NY Rideshare offer to employers?
A. We offer two basic types:
1. On-site Commuter Benefits Fair. 511NY Rideshare representatives will set up an informational booth at your work site, typically in a lobby, break room or cafeteria, and explain commuter benefits to your employees. The number of sessions will depend on the size of your organization and your regular business hours.
2. Employee Presentations. Designed for groups of 20 or more, these presentations typically last 15 to 30 minutes and provide an overview of 511NY Rideshare’s commuter and traveler benefits.
Q. What assistance can 511NY Rideshare provide on administrative tasks?
A. 511NY Rideshare helps with creating and implementing a commuter benefits program. Tasks could include a workforce survey to determine commuting needs, identifying programs that best meet those needs and working with departments, such as payroll and human resources, to seamlessly implement solutions. A 511NY Rideshare representative can provide all the details.
511NY Rideshare staff identifies available mobility options, such as carpooling, vanpooling, transit, walking, bicycling and teleworking, and identifies appropriate program strategies and services for employers to offer employees.
511NY Rideshare provides a wide range of free services to help you design, launch, support and operate your commuter benefits program. Your 511NY Rideshare representative will help you identify appropriate mobility options and services and provide ongoing program evaluation and consultation. Plus, we can assist with administration tasks to reduce the burden on your company.
511NY Rideshare will gather information from employees about their commutes and then match employees to carpool and vanpool groups, walk/bicycle buddies or provide transit assistance.
511NY Rideshare staff meets with your employees to talk about their transportation needs. These “Transportation Days” provide personal assistance to people trying to improve their mobility. We talk about choices and help develop a plan that suits them.
511NY Rideshare provides services directly to your employees, including personalized commute information, ridematching, construction and traffic updates and vanpooling tips and information. Toll-free customer support is also available by calling 511 and saying "Rideshare." Out-of-state travelers can call 888-GO511NY (888-465-1169), select a region (Hudson Valley/Catskills, Long Island, New York City Metro) and then say “Rideshare.”
How to get home or to another destination when an emergency arises is a primary concern for employees who are considering ridesharing. That’s where 511NY Rideshare’s Guaranteed Ride Program can help. Your ridesharing employees will have a guaranteed ride if they have an illness or other emergency. (Limitations apply.) We will set up and administer a Guaranteed Ride Program for your company at no cost to you, along with recommendations for determining eligibility, setting up internal administrative procedures and ongoing evaluation.
511NY Rideshare can help your company develop a transportation contingency plan to ensure employee safety and business continuity, even if a natural disaster, power outage or other catastrophic event occurs.
511NY Rideshare provides materials to help you educate your employees about your commuter benefits program. In addition, we’ll provide customized information that you can post on your company’s intranet site or include in internal emails or newsletters.
511NY Rideshare can help you develop a comprehensive commuter benefits program customized to your work site or simply provide information about commute options to your employees. The choice is yours. We’re here to provide services and programs for employers to create and sustain successful commuter benefits programs.
511NY Rideshare offers grant programs for eligible employers, to assist in implementing workplace commuter programs. For more information about grant requirements and guidelines, click here.