June 5, 2023

The Free Van System

By glencadia2  

Here at Glencadia we have been offering free pick-up and drop-off services in some areas (please check this map) on Monday and Thursday evenings (generally, with additional trips around holidays) since 2006. More than 90% of all our campers come and go in the scheduled delivery van.

Our “Scheduled Dog Van Route” is like a bus: no picking times. For most customers, pick up and drop off of dogs on the curb outside your residence in NYC is free. This van usually runs on Monday and Thursday evening after 5:30 PM every week, with changes around holidays. Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn are free. Other addresses outside of our core NYC area may be assessed $50 or $75 for using the Schedule Dog Van in the future. Here is an article about this change.

Our “Premium Service” is like a taxi. We come to you when it’s convenient for you seven days a week between 8 AM and 7 PM. However, this service is usually quite expensive. The reservation calculator can give you an exact price depending on the location of pick up or delivery. The rate at which this service is calculated depends on the distance from our camp in the Hudson Valley.

The third option is “Own Arrangement.” We are open to the public at our Columbia County, NY location Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 AM to 3 PM and Monday, Thursday, and Saturday from 9 AM to noon. Please note we are not open for visitors on Sundays or holidays. We are some two to three hours from NYC – one way.

If you chose the free curbside van pick-up service, you, the customer, the dog owner, have some responsibilities to make sure the process works.

Both of the options other than the scheduled van aren’t so attractive so choosing the Monday-Thursday (usually!) dog van is a good choice. This choice, however, comes with some responsibilities on your end. If you do not attend carefully to the system we have developed to make this service as convenient and inexpensive as possible and don’t comply with the requirements on your end, we may drive away and not pick up your dog (not that we want to do that!).

If you do not pay attention to the procedures outlined in the blog post, your travel plans may be effected and we want to avoid any problems! Thank you for reading!

You will need to 1) confirm the ETA time and location on the day of dog pick up or delivery 2) have a responsible person who understands the procedure available close to the address where we agreed to meet one hour before and after the agreed ETA (or longer based on text update) 3) bring your dog to the sidewalk or curb outside or near the agreed location after receiving a text message within a few minutes of the driver arriving at the agreed location.

If you can’t do those three things, don’t sign up for the free dog van transportation option at Glencadia Dog Camp.

No doormen can be involved in any dog delivery plan in any way. No doorman will count as “a responsible person.” Sorry doormen… 17 years and no good experiences… The driver will not leave the van. The driver will not look for a key. The driver will not go to an apartment.

We are pretty proud of our delivery logistics. We have made more than 40,000 individual picks-up and drop-offs in the 16 years of operation and we have fine-tuned the system into something of an art. The Glencadia free dog van may be the most convenient and economical option for dog boarding in New York City. All you have to do is be in or near a comfortable location of your own choosing with your dog, have a text-enabled phone, and less than 45 minutes to complete the handoff.

BREAKING: Customers pay 1/2 of the cost of their reservation at the time that customers book a reservation. The other half of the payment is due before we pick up your dog at the beginning of the stay.

If you are not available to confirm our ETA in the morning you should find someone who can take care of that for you and let us know in advance. If we can’t confirm someone will be home we won’t load the dog in the van. Please do confirm that you will be home in the evening of a scheduled return on that day even if you are getting on a plane. 

You can use the chat icon at glencadia.com (click the pop-up box in the lower right-hand corner) to communicate with us, or +1 (518) 294-4343 voice +1 (518) 294-4343 text or email support@glencadia.com. We do not regularly monitor social media messages.

There are many stops on a free dog van route. If all our dog owners cooperate as best they can with this system, it will save time and money for everyone. Please pay attention to these steps to make sure you are ready for dog pick-up/drop-off and that nothing goes wrong:

  1. You will get a text on the morning (between about 8 AM and 11 AM) that your dog is scheduled to send go to camp or come home in the free van. This message will look something like this: Our free pick up and drop off van is coming to you on the next regular trip to the city usually a Mon. or Thurs. evening. Contact the driver here by text: +1 (518) 294-4343. By confirming receipt of this message and ETA we’ll know we have the right number to text and the right address in our GPS. Thank you. DO Leonardo,  1000 5th Ave, New York, NY 10028, USA ETA 7:04 PM 
  2. Now, you should send us a confirmation before 2PM: Thanks!
  3. Sometime during the route, while the vans are on the road you may get a text letting you know how the driver is doing, whether s/he is ahead or behind schedule. If there is nothing to report and the van is close to the ETA, you won’t get any alerts while the van is on the road until the van gets close to the agreed location.
  4. Then you should get something like this: Looks like you are the next stop on the Glencadia dog van route. Eta 5 minutes
  5. Now you should get ready to meet the van downstairs at the curb/sidewalk.

There are some other concerns: please take your dog for a walk before s/he jumps in the van, no dinner before driving, as little gear as possible, and no surprise medicine please (we should know about any meds before the dog gets in the van). We also ask that you consider the overall plan – to make a dozen or so stops all around the city – and get out to the van as quickly as you can.

Essentially, being ready, text-phone in hand, and confirming details in the morning solve many of our problems.

Here are some of terms and conditions in the reservation about the free van:

If you are using our free dog delivery van (usually Monday/Thursday), you must confirm receipt of your ETA by text (SMS) by 2PM EST on drive day. A responsible person who understands the assignment must be within 5 minutes of where the dog is 45 minutes before and after the ETA in the confirmation text with a monitored, text-enabled phone ready to meet the van at the curb/sidewalk within 10 minutes of the van’s arrival at a pull over spot close to the designated address in the confirmation text.

We have had to drive off and leave someone with no dog… we don’t want to, but if we don’t get any messages, no contact, and don’t know what’s going on, or if someone expects the driver to wait a really long time, we will have to keep going and skip you. If you can’t deal with the expectations we have in this procedure, as outlined in this blog post, you might consider a premium pick up (expensive) or a long journey up to camp or another facility or just talk to us so we can help work around logistical issues.

The last issue is our service area. We cannot go way out on Long Island or far into New Jersey or in CT or parts of upstate. If you book a reservation and want to use the free van but live outside of our core area, you will have to meet the van (drive to an agreed location).

Keep in touch and let’s make the free dog van work for you and for us. Thanks for sending your dog to camp.

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