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Brabant incentive program has a positive effect on e-bike use

91 days ago

2 minutes

Source: Fietsberaad

A study on the Brabant bicycle incentive program, B-riders, revealed that 70% of participants cycled to work on an e-bike as many or more days as planned during the initial six months.

The B-riders program ran between 2013 to 2018, aiming to encourage North Brabanders to switch from cars to e-bikes. Researchers at Utrecht University and TU Delft conducted the study into the participants’ behavioral changes. Participants, who were required to purchase e-bikes and not own one beforehand, received monetary incentives based on kilometres cycled during rush hours. The program, costing one million euros, successfully prevented over a million car journeys during peak times.

Results

In the first month, 51% of participants followed their intended commuting frequency, with 8% cycling more and the rest less. Notably, 47% of former car commuters and 55% of multimodal travellers cycled as planned, highlighting motorists’ underestimation of cycling days. Over the subsequent six months, 50% cycled as intended, 21% exceeded their plans, and 29% cycled less. Remarkably, 68% maintained their initial intentions, with 83% of those planning 4 to 5 cycling days per week sticking to their goals.

Motivation

The study found that factors like attitude towards cycling and goal feasibility had limited influence on participants. Financial rewards and the Netherlands’ cycling-friendly environment may have played a role. However, with all participants already positive towards e-bikes and having registered to take part in the program, the question of motivating less enthusiastic individuals to cycle more remains unanswered.

Background

The B-riders program surveyed participants three times, with 547 fully completing questionnaires. Published in the Journal of Cycling and Micromobility Research in December, the study concludes that the e-bike holds potential for substituting cars in commuting.

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