I’m pleased to announce that our friends at RidePost are launching a new ride-sharing service, and they’re piloting it with USC students.
RidePost is simple – if you need to go somewhere, it makes sense to split the cost of travel with someone else. You can use their service to offer a ride. When it gets picked up by other people, suddenly $3.50/gallon for gas isn’t so bad! I asked the cofounder, Blair, to explain a little more about their service. This is what she said:
RidePost is an online marketplace connecting passengers and drivers for safe and social ridesharing. We enable people to fill empty seats in vehicles of all kinds, and to do so with people of common interests and/or values. This not only brings down the cost of transportation, but also makes the travel experience more fun and serendipitous. RidePost is looking to become a more affordable, flexible, and practical solution.
Our goal is to change the way that people travel. Transportation has become an expensive, unpredictable and trying experience for most people in the U.S. This is especially true for students. Not everyone can afford to travel, and we’re looking to uproot the notion that you have to spend a lot of money to see the things you want to see. Travel is about adventure, discovery, and exploration – and in many cases, this has become inaccessible to people who might be strapped for cash. Here in the U.S., many people are uninspired to see what’s out there in our own country. If we can get people together to experience new things in new ways, we’ve accomplished our mission to change the way people travel.
What if my ride is a freak? Or a jerk?
Some people are freaks, it’s just life. RidePost has a review system, so you can see what other riders thought of the driver. If he/she is obsessed with gas station hot dogs, at least you’ll have fair warning before you book. Plus, it connects with Facebook so you know that your driver is actually a real person.
As part of the launch festivities, RidePost is offering a contest for $50 off your trip, if you post a ride before Tuesday, September 4th. All rides posted count as entries. They’ve got more details on the blog.
The Story of RidePost
Since Garnet Report is a relatively young company, I love hearing about other early-stage ventures connect to USC:
We’re all Carolina Gamecocks – that’s what brought us together – The University of South Carolina is our commonality, and we’re psyched it’s our first pilot school. The Marty, Nik, and Blair startup love affair began at the University of South Carolina during our International MBA program, where we were all pursuing our own entrepreneurial ideas. In our last semester, we got together to work on Marty’s concept for RidePost for a class project. We quickly realized that RidePost wasn’t just class material – it could really take off as a business.
At this time we were introduced to Robert, who was working for a software development firm in Charleston, SC, and who agreed to work for “good people doing good things” during nights and weekends in exchange for beers when they saw each other (don’t try this pricing model on other developers). One night at about 2am, while Nik and Robert were up working on the site, Robert decided he was in 100%. We applied to The Iron Yard in Greenville, SC, found out we were accepted the day before we graduated, and packed our bags for Greenville to work on RidePost full-time.
In the office, each day is always different. Whether that’s decorating Nik’s desk (princess-style), or playing pool and/or ping-pong at random hours of the day, we definitely keep ourselves entertained. When you are putting in 12+ hours a day, you have to keep it fun and original. Otherwise we think we’d just burn out.