ALEXANDRIA, VA – If you have a disability and rely on Alexandria’s paratransit service, DOT, to get around, there is some great news. In an effort to make it easier for riders to book trips, the city recently released a smartphone app.
According to an Alexandria eNews bulletin released today (August 8), the app reportedly makes the DOT experience better for users by streamlining the dispatch of vehicles and shortening wait times.
The app removes the barrier of not being able to get through to a dispatcher by phone. It is available 24 hours a day in the palm of your hand. Once you sign on, it takes you through a few steps, asking for the same information you would give if calling by phone. Keep in mind though that trips must still be made a day in advance.
The app was built with the assistance of Via, a technology company that specializes in helping public transit providers address their digital needs.
“Via is committed to helping our partners around the world use software to build more accessible and equitable public transportation systems,” said Dillon Twombly, Chief Revenue Officer at Via. “That’s why we are proud to partner with Alexandria, a city that has demonstrated its commitment to using innovation to create inclusive transportation options for all riders. ”
Besides being able to schedule rides, the app also gives you the abilty to:
1) track and cancel rides;
2) receive automated updates the night prior to a scheduled trip, when the vehicle is near your location, and when the vehicle has arrived;
3) pay fares by credit card;
4) receive a 30-minute pickup window
Additionally, DOT has expanded their service area to include the surrounding DC area, making it possible for riders to go to more places than ever before.
“The City is excited to make these important changes to our paratransit program, and offer DOT users fast, easy-to-use, technology-based options for transportation scheduling,” said Mayor Justin Wilson. “All transportation system users deserve safe, efficient, equitable, and convenient travel options.”
To use the app, search “Alexandria DOT Paratransit” in the Google Play Store or Apple’s App Store. Download, install, and follow the on-screen instructions. See this PDF document for an overview.
As of this writing, fares remain unchanged: It is free to travel within the city, $4 per trip if traveling less than five miles outside the city, and $6 per trip if traveling more than five miles outside the city. Eligibility requirements are also the same.
Reservations can still be made by phone. Simply call 703-836-5222 to book your ride.