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Journeys are too short for Eliott

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A family ride on their bike for three

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Velofonction 7

The company car is forgotten

Jean and Hicham are two IT consultants for the Flemish company Kapernikov. The company, which is based in Leuven, encourages its employees to use the bicycle for business travels.

Thus, in January, Jean bought a bike and uses it every day to get to Elia's headquarters, where he currently works. “It has changed my way of looking at things”, explains the consultant who combines with the train to come back to Haren. “Kapernikov bought my bike, which motivated my choice. Moreover, this enables me to exercise.”

On the contrary, Hicham is an experienced cyclist. For ten years now, he has been cycling all around Brussels. To the point of reaching an average distance of 20 kilometers a day. “Before that, I was working exclusively at Midi Station, nowadays I must reach several Infrabel departments throughout Brussels. All my journeys are done with the bike. It’s not that tiring.” The maintenance of his vehicle and the kilometres covered are compensated by his company up to 23 cents per kilometre (A reminder that such kilometers by car are compensated up to 34 cents per kilometer).

“For Kapernikov, it’s a real matter of ethic and ecology. It’s a small company which simply cannot compete against the larger consultancy companies. They thus prefer to focus on honesty, ecology and openness to their employees. We have a Cambio subscription to share, should we need to use a car.”

“I try to show people around me what there is to gain in travelling in such a way.”

This solution helps to reach less accessible areas by two-wheel engines, outside Brussels for example. In consulting jobs, flexibility and speed are massive advantages. Jean tries to convince his colleagues. “I have friends who have started. I try to show people around me what there is to gain in travelling in such a way. It’s less stressful, daily exercise and a gain of time.”

As for Hicham, he is thinking of valorising his cycling experience in politics. He’s a candidate for the next local council polls. “90% of improvements are made for cars. My children are walking in the street and I know very well that it would be more pleasant and less dangerous for them if there were more cyclists than car drivers. I am committed to this change and that, one day, bikes will be prevailing on cars.”

An article from Flavie Gauthier

Photos by Gilles Bolland