Just in time for the end of the semester, transportation services (TS) has launched a Des Moines airport shuttle for Iowa State students. The primary service offers a one-way shuttle to or from the airport at scheduled times on key dates in the university's academic year, including the start and end of semesters and fall and spring breaks. But students -- individually or in groups -- may request a shuttle to the airport for their personal travel any time of the year.
The idea really started with parents, said TS director Jeremy Paul.
"We take quite a few phone calls from parents who, for example, want to fly their child home for a family event, and either want our recommendations for how to get them to the airport or ask if we provide that service," he said. "They're very comfortable with the idea that their child's university is involved in that, and the safe transport of ISU students is part of our core mission to the university."
Students need to request an airport shuttle online at least 72 hours in advance, and riders must be at least 18 years old. In an emergency inside of 72 hours, students may call TS, 515-294-1828. Paul said his staff will make every effort to deliver the student to the airport, if they're able. All shuttles depart campus from the south side of the Memorial Union and the airport from the "commercial shuttles" lane outside the baggage claim area.
The three service options for students to (or from) the Des Moines airport are:
- Scheduled group service, follows ISU's academic calendar, $50/person
- Group shuttle (requires five or more students), available year-round, $50/person
- Individual shuttle, available year-round, $100/person
Paul noted that this shuttle service is for students' personal travel. It's not an option for students traveling for university purposes, such as to a conference or with a student organization. Other university travel policies still apply to university travel.
Executive Express also offers a van shuttle to the Des Moines airport around university break times. It leaves from the Ames Intermodal Facility in campustown and costs $49/person. Its departure times supplement the ISU shuttle schedule and combined, the two services give students six daily options on key dates.
Faculty and staff
TS' shuttle service to the Des Moines airport for faculty and staff currently is limited to travel for university business. The two-step process requires both a vehicle reservation and a request for a driver. Employees on university business also can rent a car from Enterprise for a one-way drive to or from the Des Moines airport, though pick-up or drop-off is at the Enterprise office on East Lincoln Way. Paul said his team is working to revise its policies to extend the simpler shuttle options to employees. More information will be shared in the new year.
Questions about shuttle service can be directed to fleet manager Justina Sheets, firstname.lastname@example.org.