Would you go back to the office if your company provided an e-bike?
As tech companies look to lure workers back to office, some are offering incentives to make the daily commute a little more tolerable. That sometimes means making it easier to commute by bicycle or, increasingly, e-bike—a mode of transport that exploded during the pandemic.
Earlier this month, Amazon announced a new bike subsidy program for its corporate employees, including options to lease a take-home e-bike or traditional bicycle with Amazon reimbursing at least some of the costs. The bike benefit, which varies from city to city, can also cover costs like using local app-based rental bike programs and bike tune-ups.
An Amazon spokesperson tells Fast Company that the online shopping and cloud computing giant isn’t yet sharing stats on how many employees are participating in the program since it’s so new but indicated it was introduced both in response to a desire to do something good for the environment and in response to employee requests.
Amazon isn’t the only company looking into getting employees out on two wheels. While some corporate bike commuter programs were naturally suspended during pandemic shutdowns as companies had employees working from home, some companies continued to offer bike-related benefits, says Amy Harcourt, cofounder of Bikes Make Life Better, which manages bike commute incentive programs. Those included online bicycle safety and maintenance classes, bicycle leasing programs, and even house calls by bike mechanics, says Harcourt, whose company’s clients include Facebook, Microsoft, Walmart, and Wells Fargo.