Now is the Time to Go Green with Local Travel

Now is the Time to Go Green with Local Travel

  • Georgia Hines, Stew Langille
  • Post category:Travel
  • Post comments:1 Comment

Governments around the world are pouring millions of relief dollars into programs to stimulate consumer spending and change behavior. 

The government leading the way in subsidies for electric vehicles in 2020 is South Korea. Offering as much as $18.2mn won ($15,613 USD) off the price of vehicles with some local governments in the country even offering further subsidies. This is part of an investment programme aimed at reducing carbon emissions and decreasing the demand for cobalt, nickel and other metals that are used to make batteries in petroleum vehicles. Why are they doing this? It stimulates the local economy, promotes exercise, and introduces new forms of travel at a time when citizens are open to changing their habits. Really it’s a great idea. Let’s hope more countries follow South Korea’s lead.


Almost 6 billion barrels of petroleum were used in the U.S last year. To help combat this California is offering up to $9,500 towards the purchase of a new car or used plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV). Lower income consumers will also have the opportunity to replace their older vehicle for alternative mobility options such as public transport passes worth up to $7,500. This will help the U.S use local sources of electricity to power electric vehicles rather than having to source petroleum elsewhere. Colorado is offering tax rebates for consumers wanting to lease or buy an electric vehicle. This year, people can claim $4,000 back for a purchase and $2,000 for a lease. Colorado has a three year phase-out scheme to encourage people to buy sooner rather than later. Maryland is one of the only states to offer discounts on home charging equipment with 40% off as well as up to $3,000 on battery electric or plug-in vehicles. 


We can see similar schemes for subsidies and rebates around Europe where governments have also started to take action to help increase demand for electric vehicles and help the environment. Romania is one of them. Romania’s government subsidies allow consumers to receive 10,000 Euros on purchases as well as an additional 1,500 Euros by trading in a vehicle over eight years old. 

When governments make electric vehicles more affordable to the average consumer the reduction in carbon emissions will be far greater. Bloomberg pointed out in a recent article that the citizens of Italy will receive up to 60% cash back when buying a green form of transport like e-bikes. France is also offering up to 7,000 Euros on a new electric vehicle and up to 500 Euros rebate to buy a bicycle. In Austria 1,200 Euros is given to support the purchase of an e-bike. Not only are these ways for people to save on the costs of running a vehicle but it is also a guaranteed way to keep your distance from others by avoiding public transport.

Germany and Monaco are also offering up great deals for buyers with 9,000 Euros off the purchase of a new electric car. In Monaco you are also allowed to park for free at any public parking facility saving you more when you are out and about in the city. Greece, although mostly made up islands, is on board with this scheme offering subsidies of 15% from the purchase price of electric vehicles for private and light commercial vehicle use, 20% for motorbikes and 25% for Taxis. 


Governments in Asia are also offering deals to reduce emissions. In Singapore, under the Vehicular Emissions Scheme (VES) car buyers who choose cleaner car models can receive a rebate of up to S$20,000 and S$30,000 respectively. China, who have just less than half the world’s electric car passengers, were originally one of the countries phasing out their purchase incentives at the end of the year. They have now extended this until the end of 2022. This will give buyers in China a maximum of 25,000 Yuan ($3,600 USD) subsidy towards their purchase of an electric vehicle. India has realized that they could reduce over 846 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions over the next ten years by pushing this scheme which is the equivalent to 474 million tonnes of oil. The Indian government is providing 150,000 Indian rupees ($2,000 USD) for the purchase of new electric cards in the capital city. 30,000 rupees ($4,00 USD) will be provided for e-bikes and two-wheelers.

To see what more countries and states are putting forward to encourage zero emissions on transport, check out our research here. 

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