Getting paid to ride a less-crowded BART? Now that's something we can get behind.
On Tuesday, BART announced a new program offering cash to riders who will commute to work outside of rush hour—sort of like when you get free flight vouchers on Southwest for giving up your seat. The BART Perks program will award points for each mile traveled on BART during off hours, and commuters can earn up to six times as many points by starting their trip during the morning bonus hours, from 6:30 to 7:30am and 8:30 to 9:30am. The points can then be traded for small cash rewards sent via PayPal or used to play the "Spin to Win" game, where players can earn even more points or cash.
If those hours don't work for you, BART wants to persuade your employer to let you shift your work schedule and hopes to see 10,000 perks program signups and 1,200 people shift their commute. Think 1,200 people isn't that many? Actually, it's the equivalent of an entire 10-car train.
"Our goal is to see if we can shift riders to less crowded times, which will improve everyone's experience on BART," said director Gail Murray in a statement. "It can also improve BART's on-time performance during the rush since trains will have shorter dwell times at each station due to less crowding."
The funds for the perk program will come from a federal grant, BART operating funds, and San Francisco's half-cent transportation sales tax.
Participants can sign up for the program using their email address and Clipper Card number. // bartperks.com