Sara whilst out for a walk on Bevendean Down Nature Reserve
BetterPoints user Sara tells us her story
Sara’s rural existence meant driving was the accepted norm for all but a few journeys. Moving to Brighton during lockdown and discovering BetterPoints has made her a sustainable travel convert. Here is what she had to say about the app and the Move for Change challenge.
Before joining the challenge, what were your travel habits like?
"Until last summer I was living in rural countryside, where I drove almost every day out of necessity to get to work or for shopping. But I would also take the car down to the coast which is only 1 ½ miles away. Driving everywhere was habitual for me. This was until I took the plunge and relocated to Brighton. It has enabled me to drastically reduce how much I drive."
How has the app helped you to travel more actively and sustainably?
"BetterPoints has given that extra incentive to use the car even less. The points earning and the potential to redeem them at local shops or donate them to charity feels like a bonus. It has encouraged me to embrace public transport. I am taking the bus now which I wouldn’t have done previously.
I also like that I can track my progress even though I am only competing against myself! I am always interested in comparing my time on one journey versus another."
How have your travel habits changed?
"I am now using the car once a week at most, either to pick up a big grocery shop or to explore places way outside of the city. I am walking an hour and 20 minutes to work every day whatever the weather, one of my great daily pleasures. I would rather get caught in the rain than be stuck in traffic. My commute has allowed me to discover different footpaths, parks and woodland. I’m spending more time outside in nature now than I did when living rurally!"
Have you noticed any health benefits as a result?
"It has been wonderful for my wellbeing. I am feeling fitter too. I can walk further distances and take on hills with ease nowadays! When I am planning a journey and it says it’ll take an hour on foot I no longer think ‘ooh that’s a bit far, not sure I can make that’."
Big thanks to Sara for sharing her story with the BetterPoints community. She is our fourth ‘Ditch the Car Star’ and we would love more participants to share their story, so we are offering you a chance to win 10,000 BetterPoints too. Just look out for an invitation to share your story in the coming weeks.