The ‘try-out’ mobility package Mechelen launched last year in August is a success. The idea was simple but brilliant: anyone who moved to Malines could apply for a free mobility package containing a free monthly subscription for one month to public transport company De Lijn, combined with shared cars and e-bikes from Cambio and Blue Bike. The main goal was to support sustainable transport alternatives.
People moving to Mechelen can use all buses and streetcars of De Lijn for one month, and both Cambio and Blue Bike offer a one-month subscription for free and only charge the user’s costs when renting a car or bike. The offer is even valid for an entire family.
Today, one year later, the formula seems to have been a success. Since the introduction, Mechelen informed 1 387 families about the concept. Meanwhile, 585 residents applied for a free monthly subscription to De Lijn, 200 inhabitants of Mechelen opted for a Blue Bike, and 203 people tried out a shared Cambio car. A survey indicated that 72% of the applicants never had a subscription to De Lijn before.
“We’re pleased that almost 600 residents applied for the offer. That’s almost 50 per month,” said Vicky Vanmarcke (Open Vld), Mechelen’s Alderwoman for Mobility. “It’s a perfect way to offer people easily accessible public transport. It’s also the first step toward the mental and modal shift to alternative transport.”
Also, the management of De Lijn is satisfied. “Making traffic more sustainable is a top priority for De Lijn,” says Ann Schoubs, director-general of De Lijn. […] “We strongly believe in combined mobility, and this formula is the perfect example.”
Each year, almost 600 000 Flemish citizens move. This means that more than half a million people change their mobility habits. According to the three mobility providers, it’s the ideal moment for them to explore their new surroundings sustainably and try out transport alternatives.
“The mobility package is a unique opportunity for those who’re not familiar with public transport yet to try out public transport combined with other means of alternative transport,” concludes Minister of Mobility Lydia Peeters (Open Vld).