Go Westmoreland transit ride now can be scheduled by home computers
Passengers who travel on Go Westmoreland, the transit authority’s shared-ride program, will now be able to schedule trips by using computers at home.
For several weeks, the transit authority been testing a new online scheduling system. Starting last week, it opened to all riders, director of operations Meghan Yuhouse said.
“We’re trying to make things more convenient for our riders,” Yuhouse said.
Go Westmoreland provides subsidized rides to residents who participate in social service programs along with elderly and disabled passengers. For the last four years, it has used phone operators who take calls from riders to schedule the door-to-door trips. Those calls were only received during weekday business hours.
The online system will allow passengers to schedule or cancel trips and to view their history of previous rides at any time.
Riders first must call the transit center at 724-832-2706 to gain access to the online scheduling system. An email with a link to the scheduling site will be sent back. Rides can still be scheduled by phone, Yuhouse said.
The move, officials said, is expected to reduce wait times riders spend on the phone while scheduling rides.
System operators handled nearly 9,700 calls to schedule rides in October. The authority provided more than 195,000 shared rides last year.
“There are definitely times throughout the day when wait times increase,” Yuhouse said.
Other changes to enhance scheduling and system notifications are in the works.
Yuhouse said the authority is working on an application for smartphones to allow the scheduling of rides via mobile devices. There is no timetable yet for that system to be unveiled, she said.