Tips from Zimriders: Picture Perfect

Everyone loves to Zimride in style, which is why it’s important to show off your car on your profile.  We asked an amazingly talented Zimride driver, Matt L, to share his pro advice so you can get that perfect shot.

Matt L Photo Tips

Matt L offers up his photo tips for showcasing your car on Zimride.

I Zimride in a 1996 Subaru Legacy Outback that I’ve customized heavily, so I like to show off my hard work when I get a chance. Here are some tips on how to take fantastic photos of your car with minimal gear.

Tools of the Trade

  • Any camera (one that can do manual settings is best)
  • A tripod or something like a bag of rice to keep a camera steady
  • A nice, interesting background
  • Good light

Location, Location, Location

First park your car in a nice location and make sure the environment fits the car. For example, park an outdoorsy car in the wilderness or a sports car in a city environment.

The Golden Hour

The “Golden Hour” is the hour right after sunrise or the hour just before sunset. Try to take your photos at this time—it makes everything look magical.

Photo Tip: Subaru at night

Get Down Low

You can emphasize the awesomeness of your car by eliminating any distractions in the background. The easiest way to accomplish this is dropping down on a knee or lying on the ground.

Position yourself and your camera at about a 45 degree angle to the car or 90 degrees depending on the look that you want to achieve.

Manual Mode

Check if your camera has a manual mode “M”. When your camera is on manual mode, set the aperture (f/”something”) to around f/8. This will give you an in focus image from foreground to background. If you’re using a DSLR, then you’ll want to switch to f/11.

Adjust the shutter speed so that the part of the car facing you is properly exposed. You’ll also want to keep your ISO as low as possible to get the best image quality.

If you are using a simpler camera without manual features such as a phone, put the box (or tap the screen) on the part of the car closest to you until it is the proper brightness. You may want to use exposure compensation (+2 to -2) to adjust this if your camera offers this feature.

After you have your settings dialed in, hold steady and blast away!

Experiment, Experiment, Experiment

Try different angles and position the car differently in the light. I like to place the car diagonal with the wheels pointing out towards the camera to make the car more engaging.

If you are feeling adventurous and want to experiment with some different techniques, take your car somewhere totally dark, leave your camera on a tripod, set your aperture to f/8 and your shutter speed to 30 seconds or as long as it will allow. After you snap your photo, but before the shutter closes, take a flashlight and “paint with light” on the car and around it. You’ll be surprised at the results.

Ask for Feedback

Share your awesome car photos with your friends and family and get their feedback. It’s important to practice!

Thanks for all the fantastic tips Matt! If you’re interested in checking out more of his work, please visit his Web site.

Got any shots of your car?  You can share them with us by emailing or Share with us on our Facebook page!

Happy Travels!

The Zimride Crew

Zimride Tip #2: Show Off Your Ride!

Zimride is a marketplace for open seats, so it’s important to stand out to attract passengers. Today’s tip is how to add style into your ride post.  Like Zimride Tip #1, it’s important to put your best face forward by showing off your personal flare to the Zimride Community.


1. Share Where You’re Going: Google maps does a great job showing routes, but it doesn’t showcase your road trip itinerary. Mention if you plan to stop by an In & Out (to attract newbies to cheeseburger deliciousness) or have a favorite place you always visit for a caffeine break.

2. Explain How Much Space You Have In Your Car: Tell your potential passengers if you have enough space for luggage as some Zimriders like to carry a suitcase or two when they go on a road trip. For Zimriders heading to Tahoe, be sure to say if you have space for gear like skis and snowboards.

3. Let Zimriders Know If You’re Animal Friendly: Some Zimriders like to travel with their furry friends. Definitely share on your ride post if you’re willing to be a trendsetter and allow passengers to bring a cat or dog along for the ride.

4. Show Off Your Ride!: You don’t need to be on Pimp My Ride to show off your car. Check out how Zimrider Rideshare Mark shows off his ride to his potential Zimriders:

Stay tuned for more useful tips from Zimride on this blog or ask us for help directly at

Happy Travels,
Your Zimride Crew

Zimride is Full Speed Ahead with $6 million

We are incredibly excited to announce that we have closed a $6 million Series A round led by Mayfield Fund with participation from our existing investors Floodgate and K9 Ventures. This is a huge milestone that will allow us to improve and expand the Zimride experience while attracting the talent that we need to grow. And it couldn’t have come at a better time, as we recently reached 100 university/corporate networks and 100 million miles driven within the Zimride network.

It’s hard to believe that less than two years ago we were working out of a cramped apartment, fueled primarily by an obsessive need to reinvent transportation and a scrappy determination to see our vision through. Now we have a nicer office, but we’re still scrappy, and yes, we’re still obsessed.

We have a dream of a world where getting a ride- whether it’s in a car, plane, train, or space shuttle- is simple, affordable, and fun. Humans are social beings and thrive on connecting with others. And as humans, we spend way too much time getting from point A to point B, often alone. We want to make life better by making travel an accessible experience where you can make new friends. Everyone should have the opportunity to travel, and no one should have to travel alone.

And no one should have to grow a company alone. Zimride is getting to where it needs to go because of the support of users like you, our ridiculously talented team, and our passionate investors.  Thank you for giving us a chance, giving us feedback, and sharing your inspiring stories of how Zimride has improved your lives. This has been an incredible ride, and we’ve only just begun. Thanks for joining us on this journey and helping prove that life is better when you share the ride.

– Logan & John

P.S. to join our team, check out our jobs page and drop us a line.

Heading to LA? There’s a route for that

SF to LAWe launched Zimride with the vision of building a new form of transportation by creating a community marketplace for drivers to monetize the empty seats in their cars. Today we are excited to announce the launch of our new public platform focused on popular routes.

Over the last four years, we’ve successfully launched Zimride communities at over 100 universities and companies across 30 states in the U.S. In each of these communities we’ve built up an active base of users sharing rides, whether it has been students sharing rides home on the weekend or people carpooling to work every day. In all, Zimride users have logged over 100,000,000 miles traveled.

But Zimride still hasn’t been for everyone. Today that changes. We are launching our first promoted route dubbed “the Sunshine Route”: San Francisco to Los Angeles. Over the last couple weeks, we have jump-started the route with an incredible team of route builders, so users will have options from Day One. So far during our week of testing, more than 50 seats have been booked and we currently have an inventory of 100 seats available. Seats are selling fast, so if you want a ride to LA book one today before they sell out:

Find a Zimride to LA

And for everyone who is driving to LA, you’ll receive a $20 driver bonus payout along with the money you charge for your seats by posting your SF > LA ride in the month of August:

Be a Zimride driver

SF to LA is just our first route and we’ll be launching more within the next few months. Let us know what you think and what route you want to see us launch next. For users who are part of private networks, nothing changes. You will still have access to your organization’s network to share rides with others in your trusted community or organization. However, private networks will be seeing several interface and functionality improvements over the next few months.

We have a lot more exciting news in store in the coming weeks, so make sure to stay tuned!

Top 12 Reasons to Work at Zimride (Because 10 is Too Conventional)

Zimvelopers keepin' it real.

Imagine a world where you are passionate about your job, you look forward to seeing your colleagues, your opinions are heard, and your actions contribute to a greater good. Imagine a world where you wake up and enjoy to going to work everyday. A world where you actually LOVE your job.

I hear the voice in your head saying that a job like this could never be possible… Or could it?

I was the person who, no matter what I did, slumped into a dark state of depression every Sunday afternoon, knowing I had another full week ahead of me. I, along with most of the American workforce, took too few vacation days, worked too many hours, and felt unappreciated at work. I ended up hating my job… until Zimride saved me.

Okay, that may be a bit dramatic, but Zimride has transformed my perception of how great a workplace can actually be. I still can’t sleep at night, but it’s no longer because I’m anxious and stressed about having to go to work the next morning. Instead, it’s because I have so many thoughts and ideas racing through my mind about our product, our team, our users, and our vision. Zimride embodies the dynamic, social, and green program we promote.

Bean baggin' it.

Here are a few more reasons why Zimride rocks:

1. My co-workers, AKA my Zimfam, embrace discussion and are open to change. We feel passionate about community-powered transportation.

2. We provide a social networking site for ridematching. Needless to say, our group is extremely social together. We don’t make a beeline for the exit at 4:59 PM.

3. We take the hipster approach to the transportation industry: We turn something uncool (carpooling) into something cool (Zimride).

4. Zimride embraces a healthy and comfortable work environment. Casual dress code, yoga mats for stretching, hula hoops for core, and a team run once in a while!

5. Zimmies think outside the box. We can’t make carpooling cool with a conventional approach.

Meetings don't have to be boring.

6. We recognize and reward each other for jobs well done–including our monthly Chubby Bunny Champ and Cornhole King or Queen.

7. We believe it’s normal to work with a cardboard cutout of Justin Bieber next to our desk while Michael Jackson blasts on our office speakers.

8. Three words: Unlimited vacation days. Since we don’t track your extra hours on nights and weekends, we won’t track your vacation time either. 🙂 Instead we focus purely on results and productivity!

9. Our office is fit for fun. We have toys galore: soccer equipment, a basketball hoop, foursquare and foosball.

Playin' games.

10. Zimmies are dynamic thinkers with diverse backgrounds. Learning is central to our work. You’re guaranteed to soak up something new every day!

11. We don’t take ourselves too seriously. Our Zimwall of Awesome includes funny quotes and pictures from our partners, users, and each other.

12. The Zimride team is driven (no pun intended) to make the world a better place.

I can thank Zimride for introducing me to a world of fun at work, but I’ve learned more than how to create a fun place to work. Life is short. Have fun. Work hard. Stay curious. Try new things. Prove people wrong when they say it can’t be done. Laugh at yourself when you make mistakes. And, of course, meet new people, because we’ve learned from over 350,000 Zimriders that life really is better when you share a ride!

Zimride is hiring! Visit our Jobs page for more information.