There are a lot of good reasons for offering a commuter benefit plan. Tax savings for employees and employers and compliance with local regulations usually top the list.
But commuter benefits fulfill a bigger mission, too: sustainability. Air quality. Health. Global warming. Or, if you prefer, your company’s ESG KPIs.
Consider this: when an employee ditches their 20-mile/day, solo, car commute and takes public transit instead, the net savings is 4,800 pounds of CO2 emissions.
It’s a stat with a direct impact on the planet.
Most commutes in the U.S. are longer than 20 miles each day: in 2021, the U.S. Census Bureau calculated the average commute to be 27+ miles each way.
Simply asking someone to make a switch isn’t always enough. You can see proof in this through the failed attempt to adopt the metric system in the 1970s.
But there are ways to make a commuter benefits plan work:
- Ensure you offer an intuitive commuter benefits plan, so employees don’t see transit commuting as a hassle.
- Opt for an employee-managed system that lets employees reload cards or submit out-of-pocket receipts mid-commute.
- Add flexibility options, even if they’re not pre-tax, to cover the last miles and/or other sustainable commuting options.
- Tell employees about your plan. Sell it. Encourage usage. Educate. Gamify. Get the team excited. Offer participant support.
- Consider HR and/or your benefits team and ensure the commuter plan you offer doesn’t saddle them with manual tasks, approvals, and overrides.
When one of Edenred’s clients began offering our commuter benefits plan, which checks all the boxes, they saw a 51% adoption-rate within the first month.
If a business with 100 employees encouraged 50 of them to take public transit instead, that could mean 240,000 pounds of CO2 emissions is saved each year.
The client with the 51% adoption rate had 1,600 employees.
Get in touch if you’d like to see Edenred’s Commuter Benefits in action. They’re great for both the planet and your ESG KPIs.