Thinking out loud about an idea: Ride Sharing

Earlier this week, I got around in a Zipcar. My car was getting fixed up in the body shop (lauren hit the the basketball pole in our driveway, long story :)

Anyway, I’ve used Zip several times before and I’m pleased with the service. Cars are clean and available. I dig the website and iphone app. 

But here’s the thing: I wish i didn’t have to get a ZipCar. I wish I could’ve carpooled with someone instead.

Every day as I make my way into the office I notice the highway is filled with cars with just one passenger. Last weekend we drove to Long Island and noticed the same thing. Tons of cars filled with just one passenger. 

I see this all the time. It seems so inefficient on so many levels. 

Here’s what I want. I want a way for people to make open seats available in their cars as they go to work every day. I want a way for people to make their open seats available when they drive out of state. The driver/owner can decide if they want to give that open seat for free or charge for it. The owner or driver could also decide if the open seat can go to strangers or it has to be someone in their social graph or maybe even a 2nd or 3rd degree network on facebook, linkedin or whatever. There are lots of ways to think about this. 

It’s a modern day version of that cork board we had in college in the cafeteria where people would “post” that they need a ride to NYC for Thanksgiving. 

I’ve been thinking about this idea for a long time. Perhaps the best way to do this is by focusing on one city first. 

Love to hear if someone is already working on this.