UW News

April 21, 2005

Benefits in brief: The ride’s on us (in an emergency)

Editor’s note: The UW provides a wide spectrum of benefits for its employees, and you can see them conveniently displayed on the new CareNet Web site, located at http://www.washington.edu/admin/hr/worklife/carenet.html. Some benefits are more well-known than others, and some are more lifestyle-oriented perks than formal benefits. Every so often, University Week will briefly examine a benefit or perk of life at the UW.

The benefit in brief: If you are a UW employee with a U-PASS (about 14,000 of the UW’s 22,000 employees have the U-PASS) and need transportation for a personal emergency or an unanticipated need to work late, in many cases the University will reimburse you for 90 percent of the cost of a taxi ride.

How it works: Call a taxi company and arrange a ride. Request a receipt that shows the pick-up and drop-off points and the fare paid, not including tip. Then submit that receipt along with a reason for the taxi ride to the Transportation Office, Campus Box 355212, and indicate to what box number your refund check should be sent. The check should come within about a week. The ride reimbursement is available to UW employees with U-PASS cards who have a personal emergency or an unforeseen need to work late when public transportation is unavailable or infrequent.

In context: Paul Roybal, UW transportation systems manager, said this benefit provides a backup for people who otherwise might drive to work primarily to be ready for emergencies. “It allows them to get to work by means other than driving, and realize they can quickly and easily get where they need to to go in case an emergency arises,” he said.

The fine print: Remember, this is for emergency rides only, to travel from work to home, a Metro Park & Ride lot or to your child’s day care. It’s not for scheduled appointments, car repairs, routine errands or commutes, and travel must originate from your work site. Receipts for limousine rides or receipts more than three months old will not be honored.

For more information: Call Transportation Services at 206-543-0450 or visit http://www.washington.edu/upass, and click on “U-PASS benefits.”