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What can we help you with?

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! 

How will I know when my car arrives?

Safe Ride does not call you when your car arrives. The Via app will send you a notification when your vehicle is two minutes away, and a text when the vehicle is at the pickup location. Please be outside or within visual range of the pickup location at the time of your estimate.

Safe Ride vehicles will be encouraged to display the Northwestern Safe Ride logo on them, and you should confirm the vehicle type and plate number in the Via app. If you don't see your car and the app is indicating your vehicle is at the pickup, you can call the driver directly to coordinate. Due to high demand, as well as rides Safe Rides being shared with other NU students, we cannot keep other passengers waiting - your driver will only wait for two minutes before reporting you as a no-show.

What happens if I can't make my ride?

If you know you can't make your ride, please let us know so that we can give another passenger a ride in your place. If you used the Via app to request your ride, you can cancel through the app, but if you called to request, please call back to let the dispatcher know.

I am not seeing a NU Safe Ride proposal in the Via app. Why?

Confirm that your request meets the geographic requirements; 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. 

Confirm that Safe Ride is in service; Safe Ride is available from 7:00 pm to 3:00 am, seven days a week during the academic year when classes are in session.

If your request should meet these requirements, there may not be any available Safe Ride vehicles.  Check out other transportation options.

How long does it take to get a ride?

Safe Ride wait times can vary depending on multiple conditions. We recommend always checking the Via app to see the most accurate expected wait times.

Can I use my computer to call Safe Ride?

No, request a Safe Ride through the Via rider app for the smoothest experience, or call (224) 267-9842

How do I cancel a ride?

After a ride has been booked, you can cancel it by selecting the "Cancel Ride" option, at the bottom of your phone screen.

Please note that sometimes the "Cancel Ride" button will be hidden on the screen in order to give you more space to view the map. If this is the case, you can find the button again by pressing the grey line on the bottom of your screen just above the vehicle license plate number and description.

If you booked the ride over the phone, please call back to let the dispatcher know.

How do I book a ride for multiple people?

When setting your pickup or dropoff location in the app, just tap the - or + button near the top of the screen to indicate how many people are with you (e.g., if traveling with two friends, choose "+2"). You can also tap the text above the blue place pin!

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.

(Note: our app does not currently support different drop-offs for riders traveling together, so just make sure you're all going to the same place!)

What if I'm late - will my driver wait for me?

Due to high demand, as well as rides Safe Rides being shared with other NU students, we cannot keep other passengers waiting - your driver will only wait for two minutes before reporting you as a no-show.

If you're waiting at your pick up location and can't find your car, don't panic! Give your driver a call using the green phone icon in the app or send our Live Support team chat by clicking "Get Help" here: https://via.app.link. We'll make sure to get you on board!


Can't find what you're looking for?

Contact Via Support