It will be year two for the Bicycle Benefits program in Terrace, and Amy Klepetar and Matt Beedle, the creators of the Terrace branch, are hoping to grow participation.
The concept is simple: local businesses offer discounts to cyclists who have purchased a membership and arrive via bike.
“I would love for the program to be an introduction for people to see their bicycles as viable transportation, rather than merely as recreational objects,” Klepetar said, explaining that with most people living within a 6 to 7 km radius of the downtown core, Terrace is perfect location for bike commuting.
The program is open to any cyclists who would like to buy a membership as well as any business looking to get involved and offer discounts. So far this season, a total of eight businesses are on board, offering everything from percentages off purchases to a free dessert with the purchase of a meal.
Memberships can be obtained at all participating locations and are sold by way of the one-time purchase of a $5 sticker to be placed on the biker’s helmet.
Beedle explains that this encourages local shopping. It also promotes both personal health and the environment by encouraging people to utilize their bikes more.
“It’s for your health, it’s for air quality,” he said adding it also eases up road usage and reduces a persons carbon footprint.
Because a helmet must be shown to receive any discounts, Klepetar says this is another bonus to the program as it encourages safe riding.
Beedle said it is great because it promotes a healthy lifestyle, environmental awareness, while supporting local businesses and community.
The program was started by Klepetar’s brother – Ian Klepetar, who has grown it to more than 100 cities in the U.S.
So far in Canada, Bicycle Benefits is up and running in Terrace and Prince George where Klepetar and Beedle started up a program before their move to Terrace.