Ridester - The way to rideshare anywhere in the USA  
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Ridester Frequently Asked Questions  
General Questions | Rider Questions | Driver Questions  

What is Ridester?
Ridester is the best way to rideshare - a service where anyone traveling anywhere in the USA can offer or find rides within a feedback-rated community. Ridester also boasts the fastest route-matching technology available and the first web payment system to help riders securely pay drivers before each trip.


Does it cost anything to register?
No. Registering, listing trips, and searching trips are all FREE. In fact, you pay nothing unless you find and choose a match! Unlike the so called "free" rideshare bulletins, Ridester has a genuine interest in helping you succeed. In the rare event a trip falls through, the rider's payment to the driver is 100% refundable.


How does Ridester compare to rideshare sites?
If you've tried old-style rideshare sites, you know how chaotic they can be. Unlike rideshare sites, Ridester provides a solution that works. With advanced route matching, personalized profiles, email & text message alerts, feedback-ratings, and easy online payments, sharing travel costs has never been so easy!


Is Ridester a finished product?
Ridester is a new service and it's still in beta. We'd like to thank our early-adopters for their support and feedback!


How is my privacy protected?
Ridester will not release your name, phone number, or email to other users unless you authorize it, so you always stay in control of your personal details. Furthermore, Ridester never releases your address information - only cities and/or zip codes are ever shared between users via the site.


Is Ridester a secure site?
Ridester uses 256 bit SSL encryption to keep your transactions on our site secure.


Is using Ridester safe?
Ridester provides a feedback system to foster a more dependable community. However, dependability does not equal safety. Safety is YOUR responsibility. Using Ridester involves the same inherent risks as ridesharing via regular rideshare sites. Ridester does not verify users' identities, run background checks, or check drivers' licenses and insurance. Furthermore, Ridester does not endorse traveling with any particular Ridester member. We strongly encourage you to exercise caution and common sense when ridesharing via Ridester or elsewhere.


What do I do if I don't feel comfortable with a travel mate I selected?
Please let us know if you ever feel uncomfortable with a situation. Even if you’ve already paid for a pending trip, we’ll gladly return your payment of the driver’s fee back to you at your request, no questions asked. If you’re a driver and you feel suspicious about a passenger, politely decline the ride and the rider will be refunded your asking price. You should never feel obligated to follow through if you are not comfortable.


How does Ridester make money?
Registering, listing trips, and searching for trips are FREE. Ridester doesn’t make money unless you successfully complete a trip. After a trip is completed, Ridester collects a $2 ticket fee on the rider's payment and a 9.5% processing fee on the driver's asking price. Our fees help to cover various costs including credit card processing, web maintenance, and advertising. Any money left over goes to our rent and ramen noodles.


Where does Ridester work?
Ridester works all over the United States.



General Questions | Rider Questions | Driver Questions

How do I use Ridester to find a ride?
Enter your ride request details, and Ridester will list drivers going where you’re going. You can filter the drivers based on your preferences, and then notify some or all of them that you’d like a ride. If a driver accepts your request, simply pay the driver via our secure payment system. We’ll release the driver’s contact details to you so the trip details can be finalized. Once the ride is complete, you can leave feedback to promote a dependable rideshare community! For more details, click here.


What if a driver doesn't show up after I've already paid?
In the unlikely event that a driver doesn't show up after you've paid, simply contact us to explain the situation. Ridester will gladly return the payment back to you. You can also leave a feedback-rating and comment about the driver. Therefore, when drivers don't show up, you don't pay the price - they do!


What if there is no trip along my requested route?
Simply save your request and Ridester will notify you by email or text message (or both) as soon as a driver posts a trip along your route. That way, you don't need to return to our site every hour, day, or week hoping to find a ride. Just sit back, relax, and let our route processing system work for you. This feature is also helpful if you need rides to specific places very often. You can simply save your ride requests in our system, and we'll let you know when drivers are going your way!


What if there is a trip ‘near’ my route, but not exactly on my route?
Ridester is designed to maximize your chance of finding a ride. If there are no trips along your exact route, Ridester's route processing system will locate trips departing 'near' your departure point and arriving 'near' your arrival point. our system will also locate drivers passing through, but not to, your destination. In short, if a driver might be able to pick you up and drop you off where you want, that driver's trip will show up in your search results!


What benefits does Ridester have over buses and trains?
Ridester is the most flexible and convenient way to travel between cities. Unlike buses and trains, destinations aren't limited to major hub-cities. In fact, the places you can go via Ridester are as unlimited as the trips listed in our marketplace. You can also find trips that fit your unique needs. If you have a pet, you can find an pet-friendly driver. If you don't smoke, you can find a non-smoking driver. Your costs via Ridester are usually much lower than a bus or train fare. Best of all, you'll enjoy door to door convenience without the long lines or crowded terminals.


How much does a ride using Ridester cost compared to a bus or train ticket?
With Ridester, you can travel anywhere in the States for considerably less than a bus or train ticket costs. For example, Greyhound® charges $47.50 for a ticket from San Francisco to Los Angeles, and Amtrak® charges a whopping $62.00 (March 2006 data). The average driver’s fee charged in the Ridester marketplace for this route is just $37.00.



General Questions | Rider Questions | Driver Questions

How do I use Ridester to offer a ride?
List your trip itinerary and set an asking price. Riders can then search for your trip and request a ride. After you review and accept a rider’s request, the rider can pre-pay you through our secure payment system to access your contact info. When the trip is complete, Ridester will send you the rider’s payment by US Mail or PayPal®! For more details, click here.


What price should I set for providing a ride?
You should set your price based on how much of your driving costs you'd like a rider to pay. Ridester provides an estimated calculation of your cost based on trip distance, but you can set your price a bit higher or lower depending on the unique cost of your trip.


How do I know if a rider has already paid me?
Thanks to our pre-payment system, you'll always be 100% sure a rider has paid you - even before you pick the rider up! The only way riders can obtain your contact information is by paying your driver's fee. The main benefit of this is that when the rider pays you in advance, they're not likely to flake, so planning your trip around giving a ride is never wasted.


How do I receive the rider's payment?
You have a few options for receiving your money. Whenever you have a positive balance, Ridester will automatically mail out a check to your mailing address on the first week of every January, April, July, and November at no cost. You may also expedite your receipt of your check to 3-5 business days for only $1, or request your money within 24 hours via PayPal.

Can I operate a taxi or chauffeur service using Ridester?
Ridester gives you an easy way to cover travel costs. With high gas prices, that’s good thing! However, Ridester is not intended as a tool to solicit business as a taxi or chauffeur service. There is no way to search through ride requests to various destinations as a taxi or chauffeur would do. You may only find ride requests along your route by posting a trip!


Why can't I search for ride requests? (see the question above)
If you were to search for ride requests, you'd be offering a taxi-service instead of ridesharing - kind of like a taxi circling around the airport looking for people needing rides. For that, you'd need a taxi or chauffeur license!


Why can't I list a trip under 20 miles?
Ridester is a road trip marketplace designed to help you cover costs on road trips between cities. For daily commutes within the city that are under 20 miles, there are many great carpool resources available. You may visit the Rideshare Directory to discover some of the great services out there.

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