Workplace travel plans - practical measures
Many Travel Plans contain a similar range of actions and initiatives, but there is really no need for this; travel Planning can be as imaginative as you like and often the more imaginative initiatives and campaigns work the best.
A basic list of ideas is provided below, grouped under specific categories. The list is by no means exhaustive and those who are developing the Travel Plan for your company may think of other ideas which will fire imagination and be successful with your own staff. The list is quite general and obviously some suggestions may not be appropriate for your business or type of work; for example, it's understandable that a nurse or teacher can't work from home! Additionally, some ideas may work better for smaller businesses, others for large companies; however, many suggestions contain principles that can be applied to any organisation.
Walking or running
- Support and promote National Walk to Work Week.
- Provide an umbrella pool at the entrance to assist employees who may be caught out by a shower of rain on the way home.
- Provide lockers, changing rooms, showers and clothes drying facilities.
- On your sustainable travel notice board show a map of the local area with walking routes and five or ten minute walking distance boundaries.
- Provide covered and secured cycle parking.
- Support National Bike Week.
- Provide lockers, changing rooms, showers and clothes drying facilities.
- Provide a pool bike facility (including cycle helmet, lock and hi-viz jacket) for employees to borrow to try cycling to work once a week, or to use to cycle to meetings.
- Organise a cycle buddy scheme to encourage less experienced cyclists to develop their confidence whilst riding with the more confident. Cycle buddies may cycle to work together or ride at lunch time.
- Offer cycle maintenance classes and cycle training.
- Organise lunch time cycle rides to develop the confidence of less experienced riders.
- On your sustainable travel notice board show a map of the local area with cycling routes and 10 or 20 minute cycle distance boundaries.
- Allow staff 10 minutes additional time at the start of the day to allow them to shower before starting work.
- Issue new starters with a seven day free bus pass to trial using public transport.
- Provide a computer terminal in reception showing real time bus information, or add a link to this on staff PCs
- Provide public transport maps in reception.
- Develop a sustainable travel notice board and produce a map showing where the nearest bus stops are to your site.
- Offer employees the opportunity to purchase public transport tickets using an interest free loan provided by the company, which is then paid for by the employee each month. Employees can then benefit from larger public transport savings.
- Mark car share bays in your car park, closest to the main entrance. Develop an associated car share permit scheme to manage these bays.
- Develop a car share scheme, to match up those employees who live near each other.
- Hold a car share and cake morning to introduce potential car sharers to each other.
- Have a car share notice board in the office or communal staff area so employees can mark if they are leaving site during the day (either for business or if they are just going to the local supermarket); they may be able to give a lift to someone else.
- If you operate shift patterns, allow car sharers to work the same shifts to accommodate travel arrangements.
- Promote Lift Share Week and Car Free Day.
- Develop a 'how to find us' guide showing how your site can be accessed by sustainable modes of travel. Include the most sustainable forms of travel in the leaflet first to show preference of how you would like visitors to travel. Include the information on your website too.
- For large meetings or conferences, offer to collect people from the rail station or provide information on which bus they need to catch to discourage visitors travelling by car.
- If you hold meetings at your site, encourage people to check the attendance list before they travel; is there anyone else from their office also travelling to the same meeting? If so, they could car share.
- Display sustainable travel information in public areas.
- For retail development / visitor attractions offer discounts for those travelling sustainably.
- Parking management and control
- Charging for car parking is the best method of control and restraint. Charges should be more expensive than a standard public transport day ticket to encourage the use of sustainable forms of transport. Ensure that car park charges are used for the development of your Travel Plan i.e. to subsidise the purchase of a pool bike, public transport tickets, or for the promotion of campaigns.
- Issue parking permits for a specified number of days throughout the year for example 150. If a member of staff has a valid permit they can park in the car park, if they don't have a permit they must choose to travel another way. This encourages employees to travel sustainably once or twice a week. You may allow permits to be sold, allowing those who travel by bus to subsidise their ticket price, and those who wish to travel by car effectively paying to park their vehicle when they have run out of their original permits.
- Develop a 'cash out' parking charge scheme. The most effective are 'cash out' schemes which charge for car parking and pay those who leave their cars at home. Successful schemes typically charge a daily parking fee and pay the same daily amount to staff who walk, cycle or use public transport. These schemes have the advantage of being self-financing in the longer term.
- Employ a Car Park Monitoring Officer to ensure those who are not eligible to park are not misusing the bays. The Monitoring Officer can also ensure that the car share bays are not being abused. Funding for such staff could come from car park charges.
General incentives, rewards and campaigns
- For new members of staff develop an information pack explaining how they can access the site using sustainable forms of transport.
- Include information on sustainable travel in the staff induction process.
- Nominate Sustainable Travel Champions to promote campaigns in specific offices or departments. These employees can raise the profile of what the company is doing.
- Put staff into teams with each member of staff collecting a point when they travel sustainably. The team with the most points at the end of the specified period wins a small prize.
- Develop a Sustainable Travel Lottery. Each month (or other specified period of time), a payroll number is selected at random. That person is then phoned and asked how they travelled to work that day. If they can demonstrate that they travelled sustainably they receive a prize, if not, the prize rolls over for next month.
- When you participate in National Bike Week, or Lift Share Day etc offer appropriate rewards for participants, for example, in Bike Week, offer a free breakfast for those who cycle. For Lift Share day, offer a free car wash to those staff who travel in a car with three or more people.
- Provide a free lift home in case of an emergency for all staff travelling by sustainable means. This is rarely used in practice, but is a real incentive to those who don't have access to a car should a child be sick at school or a close relative need urgent assistance.
- Develop a sustainable travel notice board and display at the main entrance or communal area.
- Encourage senior managers to get involved; they should be encouraged to travel sustainably too, both to work and for business.
- During National Walk to School Week and International Walk to School Month allow staff with children additional time in the morning so they can walk their children to school.
- Business Travel
- Offer pool cars to members of staff so they can travel to work by sustainable forms of transport but still have access to a vehicle for work.
- Purchase a pool bike for local business trips; combine this with a cycle mileage allowance.
- Offer a car share mileage rate, so those members of staff who are not taking their own car are rewarded for car sharing.
- Put in place policies so personal mileage is only claimed when public transport or a pool vehicle is not available.
- Make claiming for public transport tickets an easy process so it doesn't discourage people from using the bus or train for business.
- Provide smart phones and laptops so employees can still work whilst travelling by bus or train.
- Ensure mileage reimbursements rates don't encourage drivers to make excessive or unnecessary journeys.
Reducing the need to travel
- Promote home working, remote working and flexible working.
- Allow staff to check e-mails first thing in the morning at home, and then travel to work later in the day when public transport and the roads are quieter.
- Encourage staff to arrange meetings in a similar area, on the same day to prevent unnecessary travel throughout the county.
- If staff have a meeting close to home, allow them to travel straight to the meeting, rather than going into the office first.
- Promote Working From Home Day.
- Only choose local suppliers to minimise travel.
- Choose suppliers that can deliver multiple items, for example, stationary and cleaning products; rather than using two separate companies.
- Manage the ordering system so that the same supplier isn't delivering twice on the same day.
- Ask suppliers to manage their drivers so they use eco-driving techniques.
- Choose newer and the most efficient vehicles for the fleet, consider electric vehicles and hybrids. The more efficient vehicles will do more miles to the gallon and save money in tax too.
- Educate employees. Encourage them to ask 'is the trip essential or could I combine the trip with another job?'
- Deliver eco-driving courses to all drivers.
- Audit mileage claims to assess where the savings could be made.
- Encourage staff choosing company cars to take the most efficient option, quote CO₂ and MPG alongside the company car choice list.
- Remove high emission vehicles from the fleet and company car choice list.
- Consider a CO₂ cap on company cars.
- Use fuel management reports to identify poor driving technique and train drivers accordingly.
- Record and analyse vehicle fuel profiles, reward the most efficient drivers.
- Introduce telematics to improve journey planning.
- Ensure vehicles are regularly serviced.
- Use the size of vehicle appropriate for the journey.
- Try to combine journeys and deliveries to minimise mileage and van or lorry space.
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