Ever wondered how your commuting experience differs to others? Each month we share the story of a real Cyclescheme cycle commuter and ask them seven questions to sum up their experience from their two-wheeled commute. This month, it's Justin.
Each month we feature one Cyclescheme participant and share their commuting story. We ask the same seven questions (hence the name, The Cyclescheme Seven) in a bid to build up a picture of cycle commuters across the UK. From John O'Groats to Lands End we scour the country for the real cycle commuters who take to their bike each morning. If you'd like to feature on our website, just drop us a line on: firstname.lastname@example.org with "I'm in' in the subject line.
This month we caught up with Justin to see how his commute has changed his life.
CS: Where in the UK are you?
Justin: I live in Churchdown in Gloucestershire.
CS: What was your main motivation for getting a bike through Cyclescheme?
Justin: It was mainly to save money on commuting to work, but also for fitness. Cyclescheme was a brilliant way to purchase the bike since l made a large saving through tax so not only would l save money each day on cycling to work, but also on the initial purchase. Since you pay the bike off in instalments it was an easy decision to purchase a bike as l didn't have to worry about a large up-front payment.
CS: What bike did you get and why?
Justin: I bought a Cube Curve which is a hybrid bicycle. I went for a hybrid so that l could use the bike for riding on various difference road surfaces. Since commuting though l found that l purely cycle on tarmac roads so l may look to start another Cyclescheme to purchase a road bike instead.
CS: How much did you spend with your Cyclescheme Certificate?
Justin: In total l spent £765.45 of which the the bike cost was £579 and the rest on equipment. I bought all the accessories l needed including lights, helmet, luminous jacket, lock etc as l had none of these. One small piece of equipment l bought afterwards, but l would highly recommend, are reflective spokes. These light up your bike greatly when in car head lights and are invaluable when riding on roundabouts or passing road junctions when your front and rear lights are not that visible.
CS: How often do you commute to work by bike?
Justin: Five working days a week no matter the weather! It doesn't matter if it's lovely and sunny or a hail storm - l will be out there cycling to work.
CS: Where do you commute from and to?
Justin: I commute from Churchdown to Cheltenham and back each day. This is a round trip of about 13 miles that takes me around 25 minutes each way. It is a fairly flat route so a nice an easy cycle ride to work.
CS: How has cycling affected your daily life - do you feel healthier? Have you saved money?
Justin: I feel amazing for cycling, which l have now been doing for my commute to work for over three years. I am a lot fitter and healthier than l was due to the free exercise l get every day. I have definitely saved money too since the bus to work is around £5 per day, even with maintenance of the bike the cost is nowhere near that of taking the bus. I also find l am always happy arriving at work, the cycle ride gives me time to fully wake up and think about the day ahead so by the time l arrive at work l am relaxed and ready for whatever the day brings.