Workplace Sustainable Travel

Find out about the benefits of developing workplace travel plans.

We're aware of the impacts that travel and transport have on our city. We need workplaces and organisations to play their part in reducing carbon emissions specific to travel and transport.

By developing a travel plan your organisation can reduce its carbon footprint and help improve our city’s roads. Developing a travel plan will help:

  • reduce traffic congestion
  • reduce air pollution
  • improve the health and wellbeing of staff and our residents

Switching to active and sustainable forms of transport is one of the quickest and easiest ways to do this. Active and sustainable travel also makes our seaside city a cleaner, quieter, and better place to live and enjoy.

On this page, you'll find guidance, support and information for employers to develop and implement a workplace travel plan either through the planning process or voluntarily.

This information is also relevant if you're a facilities, premises or HR staff member responsible for travel and transport, also known as a Travel Plan Coordinator.

Active and sustainable travel hierarchy

Following the active and sustainable travel hierarchy outlined below will encourage the best way to travel.

The hierarchy lists travel options in order of how sustainable they are. Options at the top of the hierarchy are the most sustainable, and options at the bottom are the least.

The hierarchy is:

  • digital communication
  • walking and wheeling
  • cycling
  • public and shared transport
  • electric passenger vehicles and car-sharing
  • regular passenger vehicles and car-sharing
  • air travel

What is a travel plan?

A travel plan is a strategy for travel behaviour change that can be applied to any setting that includes evidence and rationale to secure commitment and funding to support the promotion of active and sustainable travel.

These settings include: 

  • education 
  • business
  • community
  • residential

A travel plan is a package of measures that aims to reduce car use to and from any given site, such as a: 

  • workplace
  • school
  • place of worship
  • transport interchange
  • stadium
  • place that people travel from such as residential housing development

The travel plan must be well-connected. It should be able to be fully understood by a reader with no prior knowledge of the site.

The travel plan should be based on research and consultation with users of a site. It should include the information given below.

Site audit

The site audit should give information on:

  • existing and proposed transport links
  • organisational policies that support travel to and from the site

Travel surveys

Surveys should involve consultation with users of the site and a range of key stakeholders. They should explore:

  • how people currently travel to and from the site
  • how people would prefer to travel
  • opinions on transport options

Travel and transport issues

A summary of the transport issues that need to be addressed by the travel plan.

Aims and objectives

Details of what the travel plan sets out to achieve. 


Specific targets that the travel plan will be measured against. 

Action plan

A detailed overview of the activities that will be undertaken to change travel behaviour. This is probably the most important section of a travel plan. 


How the success of the travel plan will be measured.

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) 

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) sets out the government’s planning policies for England and how they're expected to be applied. The NPPF sets out that transport issues should be considered from the earliest stages of the plan-making and development proposals.

Most importantly, the NPPF sets out that all developments that generate significant amounts of vehicle movements should be required to provide a travel plan, and their application should be supported by a transport statement or transport assessment so that the likely impacts of the proposal can be assessed.

In practice, this means that travel plans are being created across the country for a range of development types and land uses. However, the way travel plans are secured, monitored and implemented nationally is sporadic at best. For too long, in too many areas, a travel plan is just seen as a tick-box exercise. 

Brighton & Hove City Council’s Travel Plan System

Brighton & Hove City Council uses the Modeshift STARS system which aids the delivery of travel plans. This system ensures that all travel plans are worthwhile and effective, switching the emphasis to travel plan delivery. 

Workplaces and organisations that use the Modeshift STARS system can gain accreditation, which can be used to gain ISO standards and improve corporate social responsibility. 

By using the ModeShift STARS system, your workplace can obtain these accreditation standards: 

  • green
  • bronze
  • silver
  • gold
  • platinum level

For further information, you can view or download the following: 

Workplace travel offer

In exchange for a travel plan, Brighton & Hove City Council offers: 

  • match-funding to improve facilities, including cycle parking shelters, lockers and drying facilities
  • online meetings and resources to support your workplace
  • continuing support, such as travel events, and guidance

BetterPoints Move for Change

Brighton & Hove City Council's BetterPoints Move for Change campaign is an excellent complimentary measure to use alongside the development of a travel plan.

The BetterPoints app encourages and incentivises people to travel actively and sustainably through gamification and rewards.

Find out more and sign up to the BetterPoints Move for Change campaign.

Partnership for Active Travel and Health

Free membership is available for our Partnership for Active Travel and Health.

Partnership meetings are once a year and are available for all kinds of organisations, whether small or large, to collaborate and share best practices with us to enhance the health and well-being of employees through active and sustainable travel choices.

Find out more about our Partnership for Active Travel and Health.

Our workplace travel offer and resources

Our offer to workplaces and organisations includes: 

  • onsite active and sustainable travel events
  • joining our BetterPoints Move for Change Campaign
  • subsidised sustainable deliveries to your workplace
  • tailored support to develop your travel plan
  • free Dr Bikes for staff

Active and sustainable travel resource pack

To find out about other projects, schemes and initiatives that can help make your workplace even more actively and sustainably minded download our active and sustainable travel resource pack.

Guidance for Travel Plan Champions

We've put together some guidance to support and assist workplace Travel Plan Champions in understanding their role, and the support and information available to them.

By using the guidance you can keep promoting sustainable and active travel to your staff.

Download the Travel Plan Champion guidance.

Staff travel information guidance

For a quick win, you can make an active and sustainable travel information noticeboard. Position the noticeboard in an area with high footfall where it will be noticed. Update it regularly to ensure staff engage with it.

Download a template noticeboard checklist.

Contact us

For support or guidance about travel planning, send an email to