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Exploring the idea of cycling to work but unsure how to begin? Here are some pointers!


SmartGO cycling to work blog

By Phil Saunders, SmartGO Project Manager at GO Travel Solutions.

This article will cover the following:

  • Why try cycling to work?
  • What gear will you need?
  • Starting tips
  • Building your confidence
  • Mapping your path
  • How can your employer support you?
  • What benefits can you obtain from SmartGO?

Why try cycling to work?

Cycling to work is a great way to improve your health and well-being as well as reduce the impact on local roads and air quality compared to commuting by car. The rise of ebikes has also helped make long distances and steep hills a doddle.

It can also be much cheaper, particularly during the current rise in the cost of living. The annual cost of running a car can really add up with insurance, fuel, MOT, servicing and depreciation/monthly fees, making cycling potentially a great money saver!

What gear will you need?

If you're new to cycling or haven't pedalled in years, understanding the essential equipment for a smoother and more comfortable cycling experience can be valuable. Here's a list of our recommended gear to kickstart your cycling journey:

  • Bicycle (the absolute essential!)
  • Helmet (protect that noggin!)
  • Reflective clothing (especially for darker seasons!)
  • Gloves
  • Bicycle lights
  • Puncture repair kit, spare inner tube and pump
  • Water bottle and holder

Starting tips

  • Start out small. You don’t have to commit to cycling to work every day for the rest of your life; maybe start with once a week or only during the summer months. Every bike journey that replaces a car helps the environment and provides valuable exercise.
  • Take a bag with a change of clothes if your ride makes you break a sweat.
  • Consider if an ebike would be more suitable than an ordinary bike. They can make hills and long distances far easier and faster.
  • Tracking your journey can be enjoyable and even feed your competitive streak! Strava is an excellent app for recording journey time, elevation, distance and comparing against your previous ride times.
  • Keep your puncture repair kit in your work bag, just in case!

Building your confidence

Your first cycling endeavour might seem daunting, but the best way to overcome this feeling is to give it a try! Perhaps see if other cyclists can join you either on your commute or on a leisure ride at the weekend. Check with your local council to see if they offer cycle refresher or beginner courses too.

Mapping your path

If you’re unsure of the route to take, why not give SmartGO's journey planner a try? It provides a cycling route to your destination powered by Google Maps but also estimates the calories you’ll burn and compares the CO2 you save versus driving a car. Access it by logging into your account and visiting the 'My Benefits' page.

How can your employer assist?

Your employer might offer a cycle-to-work scheme as a staff perk, allowing you to obtain tax-free bikes and accessories, potentially much cheaper than buying directly from a shop. Also check if your workplace provides bike storage, changing facilities, and lockers to make your cycle commute more convenient. Get in touch with your employer if you want to find out more.

What benefits can you obtain from SmartGO?
SmartGO offers various cycling deals that can save you money on bicycles and accessories.

  • Hurrecane Ebikes: Save £5/month off ebike subscriptions, starting from just £50/month and a 3-month minimum term.
  • Halfords: Enjoy an 8% discount in-store and online off most items.
  • Cycle Solutions: Save 8% on bikes and accessories via their online shop.
  • Rutland Cycling: Get 10% off bike hire and servicing.

We hope that these suggestions have been beneficial. We're eager to hear of your cycling commute experiences, whether you're reigniting your passion for riding or embarking on a new adventure. To share your stories or obtain additional information, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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