Frequently Asked Questions

Click a question for the answer

How do I know if I am eligible to use B.O.S.S.?

B.O.S.S. is funded solely through student segregated fees as part of their tuition, so only current UWM students who pay segregated fees can use our service. This can be complicated to explain, but generally, if you’re taking a class on campus, you’re eligible! Just show your Panther Card to your B.O.S.S. driver for verification. 

Students taking online courses and faculty members are not eligible to use B.O.S.S. For more information regarding segregated fees, visit the Bursar’s Office.

How many people can a B.O.S.S. van take?

Each B.O.S.S. van can take up to six passengers. We group multiple calls together to decrease wait times for all passengers and improve our service.  

Please note: our A.D.A. accessible van’s capacity is limited to one person in use of a mobility device and one additional passenger not in use of a mobility device. 

What happens if I spill something in a B.O.S.S. van?

Accidents happen! Depending on the type of spill, we will assess it for cleaning. If professional services are needed, the rider is responsible for the cleaning fee, which will appear as a hold on their PAWS account. 

How do I cancel my ride?

If for whatever reason you need to cancel, call us at 414-229-6503 and press ‘1’ to speak with our dispatcher. It’s quick and easy, and it also helps our wait times, so we appreciate the heads up!

You can also cancel on the TransLoc app directly. Just hit ‘Cancel Ride’ and you’re all set. 

Can I bring a guest with me?
Yes, current students can bring one (1) non-UWM guest. Remember, you are responsible for their behavior and well-being throughout the service. Any violations of B.O.S.S. and/or University policies, including state and federal laws, may result in denial of service for you, your guest, or both.
Can I bring a child as a guest?
No. Minors are not allowed in B.O.S.S. vans under any circumstances.
Is B.O.S.S. a cab service?

Nope, we are a rideshare safety service serving the UW-Milwaukee community as part of UWM’s commitment to safety.  

Cab services operate for profit, but we are a free service to our students through the university. This allows us to focus on transporting you where you need to go and making sure you get there safely. 

Is B.O.S.S. an emergency safety service?

No. If you are ever in immediate danger, please call 911 

Our goal is to keep you safe from potential harm, but we’re neither trained nor equipped to deal with a situation that is already dangerous. To reach the UW-Milwaukee Police using a phone located on campus, dial 9-911. On personal phones, dial (414) 229-9911. 

If you feel threatened, contact law enforcement immediately. 

How long does it take to get a ride?

The average wait time for a ride is between 15–25 minutes. It’s not uncommon on busy nights for wait times to exceed 45 minutes, so keep alternative transportation methods in mind just in case. Check out our Transit Resources page for a few suggestions. 

We offer rides in the order the request is received. Besides demand volume, there’s some things that are out of our control (e.g. traffic, weather, events, van trouble, staffing, etc.). We’re always adapting to ensure our riders get where they need to go. 

We highly recommend you don’t wait until closing time to request a ride. The chances of getting through on the phone or on the app decrease the closer to closing time you call, and we want to make sure you get home safely. Don’t risk it! 

Can I get a ride from the UWM Union?

Absolutely! Riders looking to ride from the UWM Union can check in at our office located in Room WG25 of the Union (Transportation Services office). If the Union is closed, you can call or book via the TransLoc app. 

A lot of our calls are Union requests, and it actually saves you time to book in person. We hope to see you for your next ride!

Can I make a reservation for a ride at a specific time later in the night?
B.O.S.S. sends vans in order that calls are received. If you don’t need a ride right away, you can call back later. You can always call to check the current wait time, but it frequently changes. We recommend calling at least 30 minutes before you would like a ride. 
I live in the Residence Halls; can I use B.O.S.S?

B.O.S.S. is funded through student segregated fees, so anyone who is assessed student segregated fees is eligible to use our service. However, we don’t transport between Residence Halls and campus buildings during Prowl Line hours. If we find that a user is violating this policy, we’ll have to suspend them. 

The UWM Prowl Line services the Sandburg, Cambridge Commons, RiverView, and Kenilworth Residence Halls Sunday through Wednesday until 1 am and Thursday through Saturday until 2 am. Be sure to take advantage of Prowl Line during their active hours. Check the interactive Prowl Line Map to see the closest shuttle.

How does B.O.S.S. handle inclement weather?

Wisconsin weather is unpredictable. Generally, if the University closes due to weather, our operations will close, too. University closings are announced on the UWM Weather Bulletin Service page. 

If B.O.S.S. closes, we’ll post an announcement on our website home page, our social media, and in the TransLoc app. If you’ve got a pending ride request, we’ll call you to let you know if it’s possible for us to complete the ride. 

As road or weather conditions change, be prepared for reduced levels of operation. This can include closing, closing early, or limiting requests such as those from campus to home.  

We always consult with university administrators and the UWM Police Department first before making the decision to close. If transporting students becomes more dangerous due to weather, we will never jeopardize student safety. 

Who operates B.O.S.S.?

Most of our employees are UWM students. We usually have one full-time manager and anywhere from six to eight drivers per night. In total, there are 55 to 65 B.O.S.S. student employees. 

If you’re interested in joining our team, check out our employment page or stop by our office for an application. 

How is B.O.S.S. funded?
B.O.S.S. is funded through student segregated fees as appropriated by the Student Association. The amount appropriated per student varies from year to year and is determined by the SA.
How many miles does a B.O.S.S. van travel?

An average B.O.S.S. van will travel 30,000 miles (about 48,280.32 km) per year, with nearly all of it earned on Milwaukee’s bustling East Side.  

To put this in perspective, the Earth at the equator is 24,901 miles (about 40,074.27 km). Collectively, B.O.S.S. vans travel 255,000 miles (about 410,382.72 km) per year! 

How many people does B.O.S.S. transport?

B.O.S.S. typically transports between 600 and 800 students per evening. This number changes with the school calendar. When school is in session, it is not uncommon to transport more than 15,000 students per month. B.O.S.S. started in the year 2000 and as of Fall 2014, we have transported nearly 1,700,000 students. To put this number in perspective, this would equal:

  • Filling Fiserv Forum 97 times
  • Filling Lambeau Field 21 times
  • Filling Miller Park 40 times
  • Filling UWM Panther Arena 134 times
  • More than 300% of the population of Milwaukee
  • More than 30% of the population of Wisconsin
I’m 21 and have a case of beer, can I bring it with?
Since B.O.S.S. vans are owned by the State of Wisconsin, we cannot allow alcohol in the vans. It’s state law that alcohol cannot be present in State owned or rented vans, so even if you are old enough and the drinks aren’t opened, we cannot have it in the van.
Are carry-ons (bags, totes, backpacks, etc.) allowed in B.O.S.S. vans?

Carry-ons are permitted only if they safely fit on your lap. We group calls together to reduce wait times, which means the floor space must be clear for other passengers. The trunk space is not available for passenger use.

If you have more than what you can fit in your lap, we may refer you to another service.

Are pets allowed in B.O.S.S. vans?
Only service animals are allowed in B.O.S.S. vans. Pictures of your pets are always allowed.