Frequently Asked Questions
Why Should I use Hytch?
It's good for your community. Sharing rides reduces traffic congestion and improves the air quality in your community, which is a good thing. With Hytch Rewards, each mile shared is automatically logged, rewarded and is a zero emissions mile. In addition, Hytch Rewards is inherently viral because it requires at least 2 people to share a ride. This means by using Hytch Rewards, you are helping build a community that is conscious about the impact their transit decisions have on themselves and others.
You earn rewards. Using the app to log your shared rides will also earn you rewards for every mile. "Trees Saved" is the primary reward you earn everywhere you Hytch, whereas sponsor rewards are earned in sponsored areas only and are displayed as points which can be converted to cash. Unlike sponsor rewards, "Trees Saved" is a reward not effected by rules such as mileage caps. Instead, "Trees Saved" are earned based on the total number of miles you Hytch, giving you a visual counter that shows how much you're helping the environment and clean air in your community.
Be Part of A Movement. Early adopters of Hytch Rewards are typically people who care deeply about their community where employers, businesses and local government bodies are already seeking ways to improve traffic congestion. As an early adopter, you can share Hytch Rewards with people and organizations in your community and inform them that Hytch is a solution to congestion that could pay users to make better transit decisions, could be implemented immediately AND wouldn't cost tax payers enormous amounts of money.
Want to get your community sponsored? A great place to start is by telling your employer about Hytch Rewards. Who knows? Maybe they’ll become an Employee Partner enabling you to start earning cash on your rides to work!
How does the hytch rewards app work?
When two or more people connect in the Hytch Rewards app, your shared miles are validated through GPS tracking. You earn rewards based on the number of miles you validate using the app, and the value of the reward zone you end your ride in.
Where Are Rewards currently Available?
Hytch Rewards users are able to earn “Trees Saved” ANYWHERE as long as they and those they Hytch with have a smartphone with a valid phone number, access to the apple or android app store and connectivity to a mobile network service provider.
Sponsor rewards that result in cash are currently available for rides that end anywhere in Tennessee thanks to Nissan. Additional sponsor rewards are being added regularly and will have a layering effect causing “Surge Rewards” in certain areas or during certain times. Please note that these sponsor cash rewards will vary depending on the rules each sponsor puts in place based on the specific positive impact they seek to achieve for their community, employees or both.
If your company or organization wants to bring rewards to your area, visit our Partner Page.
How are my rewards tallied?
Trees Saved are earned based on the distance of your ride that was shared with at least one other Hytch user. Sponsor rewards that earn you cash are based on the end destination of your shared trip and the rules that sponsors assign to those rewards, such as region and time of day. Miles traveled to that destination will be multiplied by the active rewards for that area. Some rewards may have a distance cap.
Note: Because different sponsors set up different reward rules for different areas, the rewards tallied to one destination may be different than the rewards tallied on the return trip.
Who Sponsors cash rewards? How do YOU PAY PEOPLE TO SHARE RIDEs?
Municipalities, companies, and organizations all recognize the benefits that reduced traffic will have on our communities, environment, and personal well-being. That's why they sponsor geo-defined reward zones.
Thanks to Nissan, individuals can earn $0.01 per mile anywhere in Tennessee, and $0.05 per mile within the 10 county area known as Middle Tennessee. Other sponsors have layered on their rewards, allowing individuals to earn as much as $0.12 per mile in some areas! To see our full list of partners, visit our Partner Page!
Fun fact: Did you know that the average cost of gas is less than $0.10 per mile?
does the app only work with carpooling?
No. That's the beauty of it! So long as two or more people are connected and traveling together, the app works. Hytch Rewards was designed to work with all forms of shared transportation: carpooling, cabs, app-based ride-hailing, buses, trains, and self driving cars!
Can I get credit if I'm the only one in my group using the app?
A minimum of two people using the Hytch Rewards app is required to earn rewards for a shared ride. It takes less than a minute to invite a contact to download the Hytch Rewards app and start tracking your shared ride! If someone in your group is not already in your contacts list, you can type in their phone number instead.
How can I find other people to connect with?
Part of our mission is to create a ridesharing culture and build a sense of community around it. The easiest way to find others is to invite the people you already know. Do you have a co-worker that you always pass on the interstate? Do you have neighbors that work in the same part of town as you? Do you see the same people on the train or bus every day? Do you have friends that regularly go to events with you? Invite them to Hytch!
You can also request to join the Hytch Community facebook group. It is a forum of frequent Hytch community members who can ask questions, share answers, connect with others, and interact with the Hytch Rewards staff!
How does the environment benefit from Hytch Rewards?
More people getting around in fewer vehicles means reduced traffic congestion and reduced carbon emissions. Each ride shared by two people is a carbon neutral ride, and when three or more people share a ride, the trip becomes carbon negative!
how long has hytch rewards been around?
The Hytch Rewards platform officially launched on February 9, 2018. For the first phase of the launch, the app is in beta development phase while the Hytch, LLC team works to continually improve functionality, features, and user experience through public feedback and data reporting.
What does beta development phase mean?
Hytch Rewards is using new, proprietary technology that, by design, needs to be tested in real time on a mass scale in order to identify different user experience scenarios. The app is fully available to the public during this time, and users are able to earn rewards from sponsors by connecting with other Hytch Rewards app users on their regular daily commutes. It is normal for there to be issues, glitches related to various telecommunication network issues outside of our control, and bugs associated with new software. Updates will be continuously pushed out to resolve reported issues. App users will also get to see and test new and exciting features while sharing their feedback and suggesting new ideas.
The Hytch Rewards platform is free for download, and users have the ability to help drive the direction of future improvements while earning rewards on their everyday routine commute!
Can I get credit for rewards I missed out on due to a glitch?
Hytch Rewards is a free, voluntary smartphone app that requires no extraneous effort -- one user invites another to connect via the app during regular daily commutes, which would take place with or without existence of the Hytch Rewards app. Rewards are not guaranteed during the beta development phase, and users who experience glitches are encouraged, but not required, to report issues to aid in the investigation and resolution of those glitches. Shared miles that are not successfully tracked through the app due to a glitch cannot be validated, and therefore cannot be rewarded, credited or reimbursed.
Do I have to pay taxes for the cash I earn through Hytch Rewards?
Tax related questions are best answered by a tax professional. Hytch, LLC is not licensed or qualified to provide tax advice.
Why Spell Hitch with a y?
Why the Y, you ask? Because it's sYmbolic (<- see what we did there?). The letter "y" in Hytch represents two paths coming together and merging into one path - just like two people who travel separately before coming together to share a ride. It's at the heart of what we do, so it was only appropriate that we place the "y" at the heart of our name.
Using The App
I downloaded the Hytch Rewards app! What happens next?
To begin tracking your shared rides and building up your reward bank, download Hytch Rewards in the app store. After the app is downloaded, you’ll be asked to share your contacts and location. When you enter your phone number, you’ll be sent a verification code through text message to confirm your phone number. Next, you’ll enter your name and email address. That’s it! You are ready to start using Hytch Rewards!
How do I start a Hytch?
Open the Hytch Rewards app and click the “Tap to Start” button. (Note: it only takes 1 person in the group to start a Hytch. Everyone else will receive invitations to confirm the ride.) From there, you’ll be able to access your contacts list.
Select the people you want to start a Hytch with. If you are inviting someone not already in your contacts list, type their phone number in the “search” bar, and click the “add” button. Once everyone is selected, press “continue.”
Next, select the driver. If you are in a carpool, select the toggle next to the driver’s name. If you are sharing a ride-hail service or using public transportation (no one is the driver), select the toggle next to the appropriate option, then press “continue.”
Next, confirm your ride details. (Note: if you use the public transportation or lyft/uber/cab option, you must be sharing a ride with at least one other person to earn rewards!) Press “Start Hytch.”
Next, everyone needs to validate the shared ride. A text message will be sent to the people you invited. If someone does not yet have the Hytch Rewards app, the text will invite them to download the app. If they do have the app, their text message will ask them to confirm the ride.
Enjoy the ride! At the top of your screen you’ll see a message that says “waiting,” until at least one other person confirms your ride. That message will change to “Hytch in progress” once the ride is validated. When you start moving, you start earning points!
Check out our How It Works page for a visual tutorial, as well!
How do I end my Hytch?
The Hytch Rewards app is designed to automatically end after it has stopped moving for about 10 minutes, or when other people in the ride are too far apart. The app can also be manually ended by pressing the “LEAVE THIS TRIP” button on the progress screen. If more than three people are sharing a Hytch, anyone can leave the ride by selecting “LEAVE THIS TRIP” without affecting the other participants. The host will see a screen that says "FINISH THIS TRIP," which will end the Hytch for everyone in the group when selected.
How do I redeem my rewards?
Hytch Rewards does all the work for you. Each time you use the app, it tallies your miles and what you qualified for, and for rides that are sponsored your miles will additionally be converted to points. Points convert to cash rewards. When you have earned $10 or more in rewards, you simply transfer the cash via PayPal to your bank account or credit card, and spend it however you want!
Why does the app ask me to share my contacts?
Disclaimer: Hytch, LLC does not have access to your contacts list when you allow access to your contacts list in the Hytch Rewards app.
Hytch Rewards is all about sharing rides with the people you already know. When you’re ready to start a Hytch, you’ll need to invite someone to share a ride through the app. Hytch Rewards integrates with your contacts to make it easy to find friends, neighbors and co-workers you want to send an invitation to. To invite someone who is not in your contact list, just enter their phone number in the search bar. If you plan to share rides with them regularly, you might want to add them to your contacts list. It’ll make it easier to connect with them later!
My employer is a sponsor. What does that mean?
If your company is an Employer Partner, you will receive a group code that you can enter into your Hytch profile. Based on the reward rules set up by your employer, you could earn additional rewards for certain transit behaviors. For example, additional rewards could be earned for ending a shared ride on your company campus, at an off-campus parking lot, at a company event, or during certain times of day. Be on the lookout for an email or newsletter from your employer with additional information about rewards associated with your group code!
How can my company become a Hytch Rewards partner?
There are many ways to get involved! Become a Destination Partner by rewarding individuals who end their rideshare in a specific area (counties, cities, venues). Become an Employer Partner and reward your employees for choosing to rideshare to work. Become a Parking Partner and install designated Hytch "Carpool Parking" signs on your lot. Become an Event Partner by inviting Hytch Rewards to set up an informational booth at your event!
Have a unique partnership idea of your own? We want to hear it! Fill out our Partner Request Form.
The Hytch Rewards app launched in February 2018, and our development team has big plans to continually improve the Hytch Rewards experience and app functionality. New technology thrives when the user community shares feedback, so please contact us at email@example.com if you experience a glitch! You can also request to join the Hytch Community facebook group.
In the meantime, below are some practical limits or challenges we are aware of:
- I or someone in my group is not able to receive the invite text message.
- This happens because at some point you, or your ride companion, replied with STOP to the SMS text message service used by Hytch Rewards. To start receiving SMS text messages from the Hytch Rewards app, send START to (888) 729-3228. We also recommend adding this number to your contacts list as something memorable, like "Hytch Invite."
Our carpool group picked up a friend along the way, but couldn’t add them to our Hytch.
This feature will be available in a future update! In the meantime, if there are three or more people in your group, anyone (except the host) can leave the current Hytch to start a new Hytch with another passenger. If there are only two of you in the ride, you’ll need to end your current Hytch and start a new one with additional passengers.
Note: If the host leaves the ride, the Hytch ends for everyone.
We are no longer driving, but the app is still running.
There will be a delay before the app to auto ends if you and your Hytch partners live or work within a short distance of one another. To manually end the ride, click the “LEAVE THIS RIDE” button.
- My Hytch ends on iPhone when I receive text messages or phone calls.
- Check your iPhone cellular data options to make sure the phone is enabled for Voice & Data. If the setting is "Data Only" the phone will prevent you from using cell service and data service at the same time. (Settings > Cellular > Cellular Data Options > Enable LTE > Voice & Data).
Our Hytch auto ended while we were sitting in traffic.
If you are in complete standstill traffic for too long, the app may automatically end your Hytch ride. You’ll need to start a new Hytch once traffic gets moving again.
My friend and I shared a ride, but earned different points.
Different phone carriers use different towers to triangulate their GPS. This may cause GPS tracking to be off by slight amounts, which can cause rewards to be tallied differently. Slight differences in miles and rewards are natural, but please let us know if you ever experience a major discrepancy.
Additionally, rewards are tallied by several factors, including the end destination, group codes, and other factors. Someone who leaves the ride before the rest of the group may earn more points than those who travelled a farther distance, because their Hytch ended at a location with a higher sponsored reward value per mile than the rest of the group. In other words, a very short ride ending in a high reward zone could tally up more points than a very long ride ending in a low reward zone.
I thought I could use the app to find other carpoolers nearby. Why can’t I find that feature?
The original concept behind Hytch was to help individuals locate people nearby to carpool with. The new Hytch Reward platform focuses solely on rewarding ridesharing behavior when individuals who already know each other choose to carpool. The original matching feature may be re-incorporated into the Hytch Rewards app, in the future, for those who want to use that kind of service. In the meantime, spread the word to your friends, family, and co-workers about how you can start earning rewards for ridesharing with Hytch Rewards.
My app says I have not earned any trees (or partial trees) yet.
It takes about 50 miles to save a tree. The decimals are not loading, and we are working to resolve this issue.
My trip ended unexpectedly in the middle of our Hytch.
When a network experiences connectivity issues, your GPS may stop tracking. This is an indication to the app that you left the ride. As with other GPS tracking apps, Hytch Rewards is at the mercy of network strength and the accuracy of transmitted data from your network carrier.
Have Other Questions?
We are here to help! Send us your questions or ideas, and we’ll get back with you shortly.
If you are reporting an issue, please include as much information in your message as possibe, such as:
when the issue occurred
how many people were connected with you
whether or not others in your group experienced the same issue