RTA Hosts Social Media Contest to Encourage People to “Dump the Pump” and Ride Public Transportation

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) is encouraging travelers to “dump the pump” and ride transit instead of driving on the sixth annual National Dump the Pump Day this Thursday, June 16. The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) spearheads the annual campaign that will involve over 30 transit systems around the country.  Locally, the RTA is holding a contest for Chicagoland travelers who dump the pump and then visit one of the RTA’s social media accounts to post about their experiences putting down the keys and riding public transportation.

Participants have the option to subscribe to the RTA’s YouTube channel (ChicagolandTransitTV) and comment on the agency’s Dump the Pump Day video, like its Facebook page [RTA (Regional Transportation Authority – NE Illinois)] and post about dumping the pump, or follow the RTA on Twitter (@rtachicago) and reply to one of the Dump the Pump Day tweets. All posts or comments should explain how contestants dumped the pump for the day and rode transit. Participants can post anytime now through Friday, June 17.

“Using public transportation is the quickest way to beat high gas prices — especially in the Chicago region where we have the nation’s second largest transit system,” RTA Executive Director Joe Costello said. “Riding public transportation on National Dump the Pump Day also helps the environment and reduces our country’s dependence on oil."

Contest winners will be chosen at random. People who visit all three RTA social media accounts and comment at each of them will have three chances to win. Chances of winning will not increase for those who comment more than once on one of the sites. Prizes include an Amazon Kindle, two iPod Shuffles and a series of public transportation passes and gift cards. The RTA will announce winners the following Monday, June 20 on its web site and social media channels.

Amid soaring gas prices, using public transportation is an easy way to save money. According to the APTA’s Transit Savings Report, Chicagoland travelers can save on average over $1000 per year by choosing to ride public transit and therefore avoid the high gas prices associated with driving.  Visit rtachicago.com to keep up to date on the Dump the Pump contest.