Commuter Benefits Season

By Becky Alper, Program Manager

 

The air is crisp, leaves are changing colors, and the days are getting shorter. Yes, it’s that time of year again: benefits season. Late fall is the time when employers typically have open enrollment for various annual benefits, such as health and dental insurance, and retirement savings options for their staff. Many employers also use this as a time to showcase other benefits that people can opt-in and opt-out of year-round, like bus passes or parking contracts.
Part of our work at TLC-Smart Trips involves helping employers learn about transportation options and how to promote these options with their employees.
TLC-Smart Trips has been participating in benefits fairs this fall to help employers share out company-specific transportation benefits, along with general transportation options available to commuters. This can mean educating employees on a bike route to work or other commute options, or promoting internal programs like Metropass, which is an employer sponsored transit pass, giving employees unlimited rides for a low monthly rate. These annual benefits fairs are an opportunity for employers to communicate options with staff, in addition to receiving feedback about what works and doesn’t work for staff.
When TLC-Smart Trips attends a benefits fair, we typically bring information on riding the bus and light rail, biking, carpooling, vanpooling, and using shared mobility options, like bike-sharing and car-sharing. We also have information about upcoming transit and construction projects that might affect peoples’ commutes. If there is wi-fi available, we also can share pertinent online resources with employees on the spot, enabling them to have the trip planning tools to make commute decisions on their own, after the benefits fair is over.
For any employers reading, we also check in with you prior to a benefits fair to make sure that we know what company-specific options are available to employees, whether it be an employer-paid bus pass or bike share group membership. This means that your HR generalist doesn’t need to be a transportation expert!
Contact Becky (becky@smart-trips.org, 651-789-1404) for more information if you’re interested in having TLC-Smart Trips table at your upcoming benefits fair this fall, or if you have any questions about what benefits may be available to you!
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