Price elasticity of rideshare: Commuter fringe benefits for vanpools

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Publication Date


Subject Area

ridership - mode choice, ridership - elasticity, policy - fares, economics - pricing, economics - benefits, mode - subway/metro


Benefits, Commuters, Elasticity (Economics), Employers, Fares, Logits, Mode choice, Pricing, Puget Sound Region, Regression analysis, Ridership, Ridesharing, Seattle-Tacoma Metropolitan Area (Washington), Subsidies, Vanpools


The goal of this research project was to determine the price elasticity of rideshare with specific objectives of helping to assess what the effect on ridership would be if the effective price paid by the traveler was substantially reduced (i.e., increase in employer co-pay) or increased (i.e., decrease in employer co-pay). While there are multiple modes for providing rideshare, this research was limited to the study of vanpools. The quantitative analysis used the Puget Sound data set and applied the regression and Logit models to analyze the impact of fares and other factors on mode choice. Further qualitative analysis was done using simple elasticity and tabular analyses using data sets from several Florida agencies and others from other states to provide an overview of vanpool elasticities and operations in general. While the study found only a limited interpretation of the elasticity, it generated a significant interest in the role of employer subsidies.Wambalaba, F., Concas, S