Heading into her final year of study, Ella took the decision to purchase a bike in order to get physically active whilst travelling to campus and about town. With the support of the BetterPoints app, she has maintained this behaviour, despite the convenience on offer from other transport modes. Here is what she had to say:
Why did you choose to get involved in the EcoGo challenge?
“I had recently bought a bike to change the way I travelled and get more active, so it was really timely to discover an app that could help me maintain this habit.”
Before joining EcoGo, what were your travel habits like?
“For the first couple of years at Sussex I was mostly travelling by train or bus.
Like many people in Brighton and Hove I live on a giant hill, so I would go for the easier option of public transport or grab a taxi if I was late for a class.”
How has the app helped you to travel more actively and sustainably? What features do you enjoy?
“It has definitely inspired me to travel more on my bike and on foot, and to stay physically active by doing so.
I’m a health conscious person but I find it difficult to make the time to exercise because of my study commitments.
I don’t enjoy going to the gym so travelling actively is a great way to maintain my physical fitness. Looking at the calories burned stat for my journeys is particularly motivating in that respect.
Even though it doesn’t feel like I’m making a difference, the CO2 saved figure is showing otherwise. As a self-confessed eco nerd, it is encouraging to see I’m making a small impact on the environment.
I just find the whole thing very accessible. I have been trying to convince by friends to sign-up; once I show them how easy it is they are won over.”
How have your travel habits changed?
“I’m taking the bike out on average four times a week, compared to one or two previously. I will use it regardless of how horrible the weather is, as I know it keeps me in a positive and healthy mindset. I wish I had got a bike earlier during my time here.”
I will now walk to see my friends or to pick up groceries, rather than waiting to catch the bus. This is despite the fact that the bus stop is conveniently located right outside my house!”
Have you noticed any benefits as a result?
“One big thing has been the social benefit. It has provided a regular topic of conversation with my friends; we like to compare the points we’ve earned, and distances travelled across the week.
I have saved a lot of money too. I haven’t had to buy a weekly or monthly bus pass in a while. This has allowed me to put my money towards more important things…like the pub!”
A big thank you to Ella for sharing his story with the EcoGo community. She is our latest ‘Sustainable Sussex Travel Star’ and we would love more participants to share their story, so we are offering you a chance to win 5,000 BetterPoints too. Just look out for an invitation to share your story in the coming weeks.