Chicago

Chicago, IL

What can we help you with?

Can anyone use Safe Ride?

Use of Safe Ride is limited to Northwestern students - you have to have a Wildcard to get a ride. In order to receive a ride, eligible riders must apply their unique promo code provided by the university (download your code from the Northwestern Safe Ride website here) to the Via rider app. Because Safe Ride is intended to provide rides to/from campus at night rather than act as a taxi service, Safe Ride cannot accept ride requests from parties larger than two. Please consider other options such as walking as a group or Northwestern's shuttle service.

What is Via?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our public Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

With an abundance of precautions in place, Via will continue providing Northwestern University’s SafeRide service during the 2020-2021 school year.

When and where does Via operate?

Via operates Northwestern University’s SafeRide service in Evanston nightly from 7pm - 3am.

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Who is driving my Via?

You are our most precious cargo, and we take safety very seriously. When you book a ride, we connect you with a vehicle operated by a trained and experienced driver who is covered by the required insurance. All driver partners undergo thorough criminal background checks before driving on the Via platform.

But the necessary insurance and licensing are no-brainers. We expect more! We want all Via vehicle drivers to be downright amazing, so don’t forget to leave feedback for your driver after each ride – you’ll help us make sure only the best drivers get to drive for Via.

What platform(s) is the Via app available on?

Via’s app is available for both iPhone and Android. It’s free to download, so get riding today!

 

How many people will I share with?

At this time, all rides are private rides- you will not be sharing your ride with any other parties.

How do I get the Via app?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

The Via app is currently available for iPhone and Android devices.  You can download the app here for iPhone and here for Android.

How do I create a Via account?

If this is your first time using the app, you'll need to press "Sign Me Up" and create an account before you can log in and book a ride.

Step One: Click on the "Sign Me Up" button in the home screen of the app.

Step Two: Enter the requested information on the first page of this screen. You can even add a photo if you like!

Step Three:  Click "Next" to move to the second page. Input your credit card number, followed by the expiration date, the security code, and the billing zip code. If you were referred by a friend, you can enter their personal promo code into the "Promo code" box by clicking on the blue 'Redeem your promo code >>' option.

Once all of this is completed, press "Join" and you’ll be ready to ride!

What are the requirements to get a ride?

Safe Ride operations daily 7pm - 3am, when classes are in session. 

Safe Ride provides service to Northwestern's Evanston campus and the surrounding area, and must have either a pickup or drop-off at designated campus buildings. 

The service zone includes Evanston from Central Street (north boundary) to Oakton Street/South Boulevard (south boundary) and Green Bay Road/Ashland Avenue (west boundary) to Lake Michigan. Below is a map of our coverage area, you can also see it in the Via app once you’ve entered your Safe Ride code.

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My ride doesn't meet the requirements. What can I do?

If either your pickup or drop-off is supposed to be a campus building, check the address again. You should also check out the university shuttle routes if you haven’t yet – they are designed to stop in the most popular areas students travel to and from. You may have to use a combination of a Safe Ride and a shuttle to get where you're going.

What should I do if I can't find my driver?

You can call your driver directly through the Via app to coordinate your pickup.

How do I request a Safe Ride?

The fastest and easiest way to request a Safe Ride is through the Via Rider app. Download the app on your smartphone and create an account. Apply your unique promo code provided by the University (download your code from the Northwestern Safe Ride website here) to the Via app using these directions. Once you're ready, enter your origin and destination by dragging the pin or entering a location using the search bar to begin requesting your ride. Be sure to adjust your passenger count to the number of riders in your party. Select the free NU Safe Ride proposal from the proposal list.

If you don't have a smartphone, call (847) 260-7400 for booking help. We will respond as quickly as we can, but due to call volume, it may take a few minutes to receive a response. The dispatcher will ask you for your unique single-use promo code, origin location, destination, and the number of riders. The dispatcher will give you an estimated time of arrival and a pickup location.

Where do I go for my pick-up?

Safe Ride pickups or drop-offs will always be close by (in front of the requested address, the nearest corner, or at a designated on-campus location). However, note that due to road access and safety concerns, some pickups may be a short distance away. Please check the Via rider app for your exact pickup location and walking instructions to this location. If you are unsure about where to wait, or if you can't locate your driver, please don't hesitate to text Via Live Support in the Via app.

Can I request a specific time for my pickup?

Nope. Via operates on-demand only. Just book a ride a few minutes before you need to leave, and we’ll connect you with a vehicle in real-time.

 

How do I know which car is mine?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

When you book your Via, we'll list the information about the car coming to pick you up directly in the ride screen. This will include the license plate number, the sign number that the Via will be displaying, as well as the type of car.

When the Via-cle is approaching, we'll send you a quick reminder text with this information (as well as the pick up spot). Once the vehicle has arrived, you'll receive another text and a "Your Via is here" notice in your app.

Via Pro Tip: It's a crowded sea of Via-cles out there, so make sure you check that you're getting into the right car!

What do Via vehicles look like?

The best way to identify your Via-cle is by checking the license plate number displayed in your app and in the notifications you receive from us. 

Just check to make sure the license plate number matches and you're all set to board! 

What measures is Safe Ride taking against COVID-19?

These days, a safe ride means so much more than simply arriving at your destination without incident. We're going long on safety to make certain that the next ride you take is as safe and worry-free as possible.

Here are a few confidence-boosting measures we’ve put in place: 

  • We’re using in-app wellness checks to make sure riders and drivers are symptom-free and ready to ride before they get going — please stay home if you have either been diagnosed with COVID-19, think you’re exhibiting symptoms, or have been in contact with someone who has recently tested positive.
  • While we manage vehicle capacity in accordance with local guidelines, we’d love your help — please avoid sitting in the seat immediately adjacent to the driver. Always enter through the rear doors, and in vehicles with automatic doors, please wait for the driver to open and close the door to avoid touching the handles. 
  • Everyone on board will be required to wear a mask or face covering, so think of your mask as your favorite new accessory, the one you can’t leave the house without. If you forget it, your driver can refuse to pick you up. 
  • We’re increasing the frequency of professional vehicle cleanings and are making EPA-approved cleaning supplies available to drivers and advising them to perform frequent and thorough wipedowns of the entire interior, with extra focus on common surfaces. We’re also installing plastic partitions in all vehicles.

My driver was great! How can I thank them?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

Our driver partners are the butter to our bread. Simply put, they’re the best! If you had a great experience with a driver, please let us know by filling out the feedback screen after your ride or by leaving a tip through the app.

I think I left something in the car. Is there a lost and found?

Yes! If you just lost the item, be sure to make a note of your car plate number and/or driver’s name. Contact Via Support using the Help Center in the Via app. If the driver found your item, Via Support will help coordinate its return.

My phone died! Is my ride canceled?

Nope! You just won’t be able to receive notifications when your ride arrives, so you’ll have to be ready and waiting near your pickup. You may also want to text Via Live Support to request an ETA for your vehicle.

How do I reset my password?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

When logging in, first make sure you are using the exact e-mail address that you used to open your Via account. To reset your password, first open the app and select "Log me in." In the password box, press "Forgot your password?"

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On this screen enter your phone number and press "Send"

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Once you receive the password by text, you can go back into the app and log in with the password we sent you. Once logged in, you can change the password to one of your liking.

Click on the "Menu" icon in the top left and then on your user profile (where your name and number are displayed) - this will take you to edit your profile. Click on the "Password" field:

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On this screen you will enter the current password (the one from the text message), and then enter a new password of your choice - then click "Save."

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If you need further assistance, don't hesitate to e-mail us here.

I'm not receiving my temporary password.

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

We’re sorry for the hassle! Please email us via the contact form here, and we can reset your password for you manually.

Can I ride with my pet?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

Licensed service animals are welcome to ride in Via-cles without restrictions. Other dogs and cats must be in an airline-approved carrier in order to ride with Via.
 

The Four Rules of Via

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

Since Via is a shared service we ask all members to obey our Four Simple Rules.


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Be ready and waiting 
Get to your pickup corner before your Via-cle arrives.

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Avoid phone calls
Limit phone calls to emergencies or quick logistics during shared rides.

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Don't eat or drink
Help us keep the Via-cles clean.

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Be Considerate
Treat your fellow members and drivers with respect.

Can I smoke or use an electronic cigarette in my Via?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

Smoking of any kind is prohibited in your Via-cle. This includes e-cigarettes, vaporizers, or "smokeless" cigarettes.
 

Can I eat in the vehicle?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

We know that you are guys and gals on the go, but please help us keep our Via-cles clean and fresh and avoid bringing food and drink in our cars.  

If spills occur, we'll have to charge you a cleaning fee!

Can my child ride with Via?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

Children are welcome in Via-cles! We strongly encourage all parents to bring a car seat or booster seat where appropriate, as driver partners are required to transport infants in a carseat. Via driver partners will not provide car seats or booster seats. Please note that all children, regardless of age, must be marked as an additional passenger when booking your ride. This requirement is due to vehicle capacity restrictions based on number of passengers.

 

Can Via deliver a package for me?

In light of the current situation, we’re temporarily suspending our Via Chicago service. We hope you’re staying healthy and safe.

Via driver partners are not able to transport any unaccompanied packages for our members. We'll need you to accompany any packages, luggage or belongings that want to take a joy ride in a Via! 
 
Support

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