News / Published on May 7, 2024

A shopping trip with Zip

What you can do in two hours on Zip Alderwood Shuttle

A Zip car parked in front of the Alderwood Mall.

Pictured above: A Zip car parked in front of the Alderwood Mall.

As a new communicator for Community Transit and longtime Snohomish County resident, I want to write about all the great things you can do on local transit. On this mission, I wanted to go shopping.

Sure, you could take one of our local buses to do some retail therapy, but what if there was a way to get dropped off curbside at your favorite shops?

That’s where Community Transit’s Zip Alderwood Shuttle comes in.

Zip Alderwood Shuttle is CT’s first on-demand rideshare service. The Alderwood area of Lynnwood was chosen for this service to connect the future light rail station with local destinations. In addition to shopping, riders can use Zip to get to things like appointments, social services, and other transit connections.

To schedule a ride with Zip, I used an app on my phone called Goin’, which was a quick download and signup experience. You can also dial a number to book a ride. Once my signup was complete, I locked in my first trip.

Zip shuttles awaiting passengers at Lynnwood Transit Center.

Pictured above: Zip shuttles awaiting passengers at Lynnwood Transit Center.

Most riders wait an average of 15 minutes for a Zip shuttle to arrive, so I enjoyed the rare spring sun while wandering around the transit center.

Seeing the light rail construction and Swift Orange Line buses pulling in and out of their respective bays, I tried to envision how busy the transit center will be once Link light rail comes to Lynnwood on August 30.

My Zip shuttle (a hybrid sedan) arrived in under 15 minutes, and I hopped in. I handed the driver my ORCA card. Using your ORCA card on Zip gets you rides for two hours from first tap to last tap at $2.50 for an adult and $1.25 for reduced fare riders (18 and under ride for free!).

The driver tapped my card and away we went.

My driver was so nice! We chatted about the weather and how much she loves driving for Zip. Every driver I talked to on my trips spoke about how they have regulars and get to know them and their families, just like our bus drivers.

Before I knew it, I was at my first destination.

H-Mart is a massive Asian grocery market on 184th Street near Alderwood Mall. I browsed the shelves and stocked up on my personal favorites – canned coffee (I’m drinking one as I write this blog!), Japanese Kit-Kat flavors like orange and strawberry, and ramen brands I cannot find at my local grocery store.

Cans of coffee and a stack of flavored KitKats sit on a table.

Pictured above: The H-Mart haul. Coffee and Kit-Kats (not pictured: the ramen because I ate it).

After checking out, I pulled up the Goin’ app again to book my next trip. Walking around H-Mart could make anyone hungry, and while it has an incredible food court, Muto Izakaya is my favorite ramen spot in Lynnwood, and it was calling my name.

I checked out, walked outside and five minutes later my Zip shuttle (now a minivan) pulled up curbside.

Every ride I took on Zip was a solo ride, but Zip Alderwood Shuttle is a rideshare service, so be prepared to ride along with another person when demand is high.

Muto Izakaya on 44th Ave. has been my go-to spot in Snohomish County for ramen and katsu curry. I grabbed a bowl of Shoyu ramen, quickly slurped it down, and while waiting for the check I queued up a ride to Silver Platters, a fantastic record shop in the Zip shuttle service area.

A bowl of park ramen and a bottle of ramune.

Pictured above: Ramen and Ramune at Muto Izakaya.

I browsed records for longer than I should have. I may have gone over my two hours after the marathon record diving session, but I came away with a small haul. Keep a timer on your phone to be sure that you’re getting the most for your ORCA swipe! My ride back to the transit center cost another $2.50.

I spent some time sitting on the curb looking over my new purchases while waiting for my last Zip Shuttle of the day. I didn’t have to wait long. My driver this time was playing jazz over the radio, and we chatted about our favorite artists.

A map of the Zip Alderwood Shuttle service area.

Pictured above: The Zip Alderwood Shuttle service area. 

All told, I loved my afternoon using Zip and can’t wait to use the service again. Learn more about Zip Alderwood Shuttle and schedule your next trip via the Goin’ app or call (425) 521-5600.

Getting to the Zip Alderwood Shuttle area

There is a parking garage at Lynnwood Transit Center, but the best way to go (no bias) is via bus. Zip serves the Swift Blue Line at the Highway 99 and 196th Street Station. Swift Orange Line and other local routes stop at Lynnwood Transit Center, which is in the Zip Alderwood Shuttle service area.