Bologna gives app users beer to encourage green travel

A green travel scheme in the Italian city of Bologna has developed an app which lets users log sustainable trips in return for points which they can redeem against things such as ice cream, cinema tickets and beer.

The Bella Mossa (or good job) scheme, which was funded by both the EU and Bologna’s local government, was set up last year by urban planner Marco Amodori to encourage people to ditch their cars and travel on bike, bus or on foot.

Amodori developed an accompanying app called BetterPoints which lets users log their journeys, using the GPS tracker on their phones to ensure there is no cheating.

Over 100 local businesses have subsequently signed up to give away discount vouchers.

The scheme runs for six months each year with 3.7 million kilometres of sustainable journeys recorded last year and over 16,000 reward vouchers claimed. This year, 10,000 people have used the app.

The app also includes the option to compete with your friends and also has a ‘travel to work’ and ‘travel to school’ programmes. It shows users how much CO2 they’ve saved after each journey and a maximum of four journeys can be logged each day.

Amodori told the BBC: “For the first time we’ve been able to involve all people. Everybody will have the possibility to change a car trip into a bike trip or a bus trip and be able to get some discount for their good behaviour.

“The system of point collection is based not on the distance you travel, but on a single trip. Because it’s important that even for short trips of 1km you do it in a sustainable way”.

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