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All you need to know about car pooling
Car sharing is two or more people sharing a car to make the same journey together. It allows people to benefit from the convenience of the car, whilst alleviating the associated problems of congestion, pollution and cost.
However, FAXI is about more than just car pooling; simply being in contact with others opens up a number of ‚buddy‘ systems to think about – sharing the walk to work or school, cycling to work or even taking the bus together become very simple. It is a great way of making your journey home at night safer, of freeing up that dead time sat in traffic, of planning your or your childrens‘ journeys without using your car, so even if you cannot go with them, you can be safe in the knowledge that they will not be on their own.
- Free up your commute to check your emails, your presentation, your Instagram
- Reduce the amount of time spent taking the children to and from school
- Cut your fuel, toll, parking costs
- Meet co workers living locally
- Meet parents living locally with children at the same school
- Reduce congestion & pollution
To your child:
- Meet other children living locally who attend the same school
- Discover how easy it is to be socially and environmentally responsible
- Increase the amount of exercise they get each day
To your workplace:
- Significantly reduce parking problems
- Reduce local congestion
- Reduce local pollution
- Reduce transport poverty
To the school:
- Reduce congestion around the school
- Reduce pollution around the school
- Reduce parking problems in and around the school
- Improve relations with the local community
- Improve community spirit
This is a very important question for you whether you are car pooling to work or you’re using car pooling to transport your children to school. Only you can decide who you are happy to travel with or to allow your children to travel with.
We suggest that if you don’t know a potential car sharer you meet up beforehand for a coffee and a chat and make sure you are going to get on.
It is also advisable to check all the legal driving documents, such as driving licence, car insurance, MOT and car tax whether you know the driver or not.
This is up to you and the other interested parties. Your group admin may make it a condition of the initiative, however be aware there is a charge for these checks and the administrators may not be able to fund the cost.
Sharing your commute or the school run should not increase your insurance costs, though charging passengers more than their share of the running cost can invalidate your cover.
From the ABI Website re Giving Lifts: „All ABI (Association of British Insurers) motor insurers have agreed that if your passengers contribute towards your running costs your insurance cover will not be affected, as long as lifts are given in a vehicle seating eight passengers or less. This agreement does not apply if you make a profit from payments received or if carrying passengers is your business.“ (Source: ABI web site, 2005)
The law will apply whether you child is in your car or a friend’s. This must be organised in advance so that all participants are adequately prepared. It is important that you are happy that your child is properly restrained in any vehicle. If your child is coming back in a different car, then again that car must have appropriate restraints.
If the other driver lets you down you can simply use the FAXI platform to find other drivers going your way, message them and catch a ride with them instead.
If for any reason a participant cannot fulfill their expected journey, then the appropriate parent/carer or school is notified immediately so that alternative arrangements can be made without any upset to the child. It is always worth having an alternative plan for unforeseen circumstances.
What is FAXI and how does it work
FAXI is a journey sharing platform designed to promote and facilitate all forms of journey sharing, from car pooling to walking and cycling, even public transport and taxis.
The core aim is to reduce the number of cars on the road, thereby helping the environment and easing congestion around towns and cities.
FAXI groups are generally closed groups based around a common destination, e.g. an office, school, football club etc., in this way security and trust are built in from the outset as people are – to varying degrees – known to each other, even if it’s only through working for the same company.
In addition to reducing your transport costs, reducing congestion and reducing pollution, as an added incentive to car share we’re finding that many employers are also willing to offer additional incentives such as reserved and / or reduced cost parking for drivers recognised to be involved in car pooling.
FAXI is a journey sharing platform for people you may know or who may be connected to you, who travel regularly in the same direction, such as a co-worker in your company, or another parent with a child at the school your child goes to, or a member of the same club etc., etc. This reduces the risk of travelling with a complete stranger and gives you peace of mind to connect and journey share with confidence.
What’s more, FAXI also allows you to create walking or cycling groups with others travelling to the same destination to make your journey safer and more sociable.
The two key differences, therefore, between FAXI and other journey sharing platforms are that FAXI is designed with the idea of trust and safety built in from the ground up – you are only sharing with people you know or are connected to – and it is designed around your regular journeys – the daily commute or school run, the weekly club or church visit – rather than ad hoc, one off trips.
Simply click on a join a group or create a group button or link found on most pages. If you chose to join an existing group, select a group from the list and complete the registration. If an appropriate group does not already exist you can simply create one; register your group details and invite colleagues, friends, fellow parents etc. to join.
Your business/school/club/society may send you a link to invite you to join a group, clicking this link will take you directly to the specific registration page for this group.
Once registered with a group you will see a map with icons showing the approximate locations of other group members who live near you, who live along your route or who drive by you on their way to the group destination. Tapping on their icon shows their user name and a window to message them and arrange journey sharing.
All messaging is done through the app, no email addresses or phone numbers are revealed to other users.
If there isn’t an existing group appropriate for your destination you can create one and invite co-workers, fellow parents or club members etc.
From the map page, you can click on the user icon appropriate to the person you wish to message. The info panel on the right or below the map (depending on your screen size) should show their ‚Status‘ tab, showing their status and giving access to a ‚Message‘ button. Click this ‚Message‘ button and you should be able to send them a message in much the same way as you might do in your favourite messaging app. They will receive a notification in their app as well as a backup email notification.
Alternatively select the message icon in the top navigation to open the message page. From here you can select a fellow group member and send them a message.
If the driver requests it then accepting the journey each day will easily send an agreed amount to your driver to reimburse them for a portion of their costs incurred picking you up.
Currently when a driver is setting off to collect you, you will recieve a message to let you know when to expect them. When you recieve this you can simply respond and make a payment.
The FAXI app has an in built payment facility so that motoring costs can be shared without embarrassment or trying to find the correct cash and/or change. The financial benefits of car pooling mean drivers can receive contributions of £1,000’s per year while passengers save significantly over driving themselves or taking public transport. However it is not obligatory, there is an option in the app to accept a journey without payment for those who have alternative arrangements.
Yes, ultimately this is one of our goals, to give you one point of contact to organise everything for your commute, from knowing what the weather will be like so you know what to wear for the cycle to work or setting off earlier to take extra traffic into consideration to knowing where empty car parking spaces are and organising any payment necessary.
No, the FAXI app is free to download and use.
Your FAXI account
As FAXI is developing and spreading the word in your community, more and more users will join the platform. Make sure your status is visible to others and meaningful – tell other users when you travel, what you are offering and what you need – to maximise you sharing visibility. Set your status from the settings page or your user icon on the map.
If it’s an open group you should get instant access, if it’s a closed group you may need to wait for the group admin to approve your registration.
We position your Group and User icons on the map based on the postcode supplied at registration. Sometimes postcodes go out of use, sometimes they describe a large area. If you find that your user or group icon on the map does not appear to be where you think it should be you can position the icon more accurately. Simply go to your settings page to edit your personal address or, if you are the group admin, go to the group settings page to edit your group address. Set it to include the full postal address for the location and you should find that your marker is moved to the correct location.
We take our geo-location data from Google Maps. Sometimes, if your postcode has changed recently or it is a new postcode, Google Maps are not quite up to speed and the postcode check will return an error.
If this appears to be happening, i.e. you are sure you are entering your postcode correctly but the form is throwing an error and you are unable to register, don’t worry.
You can register with any postcode, e.g. ‚N1 1AA‘, and simply correct it later via your settings page to edit your personal address or, if you are the group admin, the group settings page to edit your group address. Set it to include the full postal address for the location and you should find that, if there are any parts of the address Google Maps cannot locate, these elements are simply ignored and an accurate location is calculated from the elements it can locate.
Safety and security
With FAXI you can create open or closed groups.
An open group means anyone can join and have instant access to all users of the group.
A closed group means all registrations need to be approved by the admin before they can get access to the group users.
In either case no personal information is shared with any other user.
Your personal information is never shared with any other users, only your screen name and a rough approximation of your address is shown on the map and all messaging is handled directly through the platform and the app, your personal email or phone number is never shown.
That said, as a user, you are solely responsible for your interactions with other FAXI users. You are advised at all times to use good judgement; for the most part you will be sharing with someone who works for the same company as you, who has children at the same school as you, who plays sport at the same club as you or goes to the same church as you, etc., however your safety is your primary responsibility.
1. Only known parents can sign up
Schools must first upload parents‘ emails, this ensures 100% that only parents with email addresses known to the school can join the group. Emails are encrypted on our servers to ensure data protection laws are complied with fully.
2. Authorised parents are known by the school
As well as being authorised to join the group by the school, users must also be specifically authorised by parents to pick up their children. Once parents authorise other parents to pick up their children, a notification is sent to the school. Schools then have an up to date list of authorised parents at all times.
All information pertaining to a particular group is behind a secure log in, only registered users – authorised by the group admin – can gain access to the group and any of the information relating to it.
All messaging is handled directly via the app or the platform; no personal information of any user is ever revealed to any other user.
Your location on the map is not in real time, it is an approximation of your home address, no real time location information or address details are revealed to any other user.
FAXI is intended as a graphical introductory service – when you see other users on a map it becomes very clear who you could potentially pick up or who could pick you up. You can then message users securely and decide if this is someone you want to share a journey with or not. You decide how much personal information you share.
Email addresses are encrypted using the same security technology used by banks and governments before being stored on our servers. We will never store, or be able to view, an actual email address on our system, which means we are compliant with the data protection act.
FAXI is hosted on Tier 1 Amazon Web Servers. AWS have been architected to be one of the most secure cloud computing environments available today The AWS cloud infrastructure is housed in AWS’s highly secure data centres, which utilise state-of-the art electronic surveillance and multi-factor access control systems.
Every aspect of our service is accessed over HTTPS secure socket layer, meaning all requests to the server are encrypted.
FAXI’s architecture has multiple layers, each layer having its own perimeter:
- – Application layer : application logic
- – API layer : object model and security model
- – Database layer : data persistency
The Application layer can only access the database through the API. This ensures that a compromised application layer cannot be granted access to the database and that the security model cannot be bypassed in any way at application level.
FAXI will not hold your credit card details. If you chose to contribute to your drivers costs you will be required to preload your account. As you make journeys, and therefore contributions, payments will be drawn down against your deposited amount until you need to reload your account to be able to continue taking journeys and making contributions.
To load your account you can deposit funds via PayPal, you do not need to have a PayPal account (although you can integrate it simply if you do), simply enter your card details and desired deposit amount and PayPal will do the rest. You can instruct PayPal to save or delete your card details, so if you wish PayPal will process this one payment and then simply delete your card details, they will have no record of them at all.
You can read more about PayPal security here
And more about PayPal privacy here
That’s absolutely correct, it is both unsafe and illegal to use your mobile phone while driving, even when stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic.
FAXI users absolutely should not use their mobile phones in their vehicles.
There is absolutely no reason to use the FAXI app whilst in your car.
The FAXI shared journey process from start to finish is:
- The driver will receive a reminder in the form of a push notification to their phone prior to the journey.
- The driver can start their shared journey with a single click directly from this push notification without opening the smart phone application and long before entering their vehicle.
- A notification is automatically sent to all passengers being transported.
- The passenger(s) can accept or decline the journey with a single click directly from this push notification without opening the smart phone application.
- The driver will receive audible confirmation of acceptance from the each passenger.
- That’s it, the journey will finish itself as required.
- This procedure has been specifically designed so that the driver has no smart phone interaction whatsoever while driving the vehicle.
The FAXI app makes driving and picking passengers up safer than ever before, it is not necessary to text or call people to let them know you are on your way. In the next iteration of the app passengers will be able to see exactly how far away their driver is, so it won’t even be necessary to call ahead to alert your colleagues that you are stuck in traffic etc.
FAXI proof of car share
When engaging in a shared car journey a driver can send a message to their passenger to let them know they’re on their way and give an approximate time of arrival – the passenger can get their shoes on and find their keys etc.
The passenger can respond to this message to let the driver know that they are ready to go and that they accept / decline to pay.
The FAXI apps then run periodic checks to see if the driver has picked up the passenger and if they are travelling happily together.
When you reach your destination we can pass this information to your car parking system or incentive adminstrator to ensure they know to award your incentive.
As long as two people are sharing they will benefit from reduced motoring costs and cheaper and/or priority parking. However the more people who share the better for the environment and the greater the reduction of motoring costs and car park congestion.
Think of your empty seats as an unused asset, to make full use of this asset fill your car up!
The app must be open and running in the background on drivers’ and passengers’ smart phones to confirm car pooling has taken place.
Once your journeys and sharers have been set up all you have to do on a daily basis is tap the ‘start journey’ button to begin your shared journey and tell your passenger(s) you’re on your way.
You can also set a handy alert at a time of your choice to remind you to start your journey. If you’ve set your alerts, you will receive a push notification to your phone and all you will need to do is hit ‘Start’ in the push notification to start your journey, your passengers will receive a push notification to let them know you are on your way and the car park will be informed that you have been involved in a shared car journey.
At the moment the FAXI app is available on iPhone and Android phones. If you do not have a smart phone and want to participate in a proof of car share scheme contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Drivers send a ‘start journey’ notification to passengers before they leave. Passengers accept the journey and once they are in the car the driver’s phone uses short range wireless communication technology such as Bluetooth LE (Low Energy Bluetooth) to scan for, find and record other app users nearby.
Using short range wireless communication technology such as Bluetooth LE, the drivers‘ mobile phone continues to periodically scan for and record the presence of other FAXI app users nearby until they reach their destination.
Bluetooth Low Energy is extremely low energy, it has been designed specifically to provide considerably reduced power consumption and cost while maintaining a similar communication range to Classic Bluetooth. It uses less energy even than WiFi, which on most phones is on all the time, it even uses less energy than is required to check for the best phone signal, which all phones MUST do all the time.
To further mitigate any increase in battery usage, your Bluetooth will not even be on all the time, the app will only turn it on briefly and periodically as it’s required.
From our point of view you probably could, our aim is to promote journey sharing because of the benefits it brings, i.e. reduced travel costs, reduced congestion, reduced pollution etc., so if you chose to pretend to car share you simply don’t get any of those benefits.
However it’s worth noting that if you are part of a employer sponsored incentive scheme to promote and reward car pooling your employer is likely to view this as fraud, and deal with it as they see fit.
If your phone breaks you will not be able to prove that you car shared and you will be charged the normal parking rate.
FAXI is hosted on Tier 1 Amazon Web Servers with multiple layers of redundancy providing 99.999% uptime. If they were to go down and we were not able to send, receive or process information regarding your current journey characteristics our back up system would default to known car sharers receiving any incentives as though they had car shared that day.
FAXI videos and tutorials
FAXI is free to set up and run for all social groups, free for commercial groups for the first 30 days, and free to join and use for all users.
If you take a ride with another user your driver has the option to charge you a contribution to their costs based on £0.10 per mile. If they choose to do this it is very simple and is all handled by the app#.
For FAXI platform and service pricing for corporate groups please contact us
Under the United Kingdom Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 (as amended), you have the right to cancel your Membership accompanied by your right to access and use the Facilities within seven days of your acceptance of these Terms upon first registration. The agreement made between us and you as set out in these Terms will otherwise remain in full force and effect while you are a Member.