I used one of the cycle-to-work schemes in the past to buy a Brompton and it was fairly easy to manage but I have not done it since on any of the other bicycles I have bought.
There are different companies offering what amounts to more or less the same scheme. All involve more or less the following steps:
- Register with a cycle-to-work scheme
- Choose your bicycle (a Brompton surely) and equipment from the agreed shop and get a quote
- Sign in to your cycle-to-work website and submit the quote
- A hire agreement goes to your employer you you and they sign
- Your company makes the payment to the cycle-to-work company and they send you a voucher to buy your bicycle
- You take your voucher and collect your new bicycle
The amount you save is taken off your monthly wage and spread over 12 months (some schemes are longer). After a year the bike is sort of hired to you and after 4x years you have the option of paying a final fee and then the bike is yours. The saving depend on what tax bracket you are on.
If they could make it all a little less complicated, I think it would appeal more - it would be me. It might be a way of getting a Brompton that otherwise you might not have considered due to cost.
Of course the elephant in the room is that you could get a bicycle for free but if you aren't comfortable cycling on the open road, it doesn't matter what savings you make. It is likely that when the lockdown is eased, the masses will head for the tube, bus, train and car. An increase in car traffic in particular will make things a little bit lively for us cyclists. What is really needed is an increase the funding of safe cycling lanes/routes and making the prospect of cycling in cities that bit more enjoyable.
At the moment, cycling is bliss as traffic has been reduced greatly. My advice to those who have recently rediscovered cycling is to book yourself on a free cycle awareness course. Cycling in London with its normal compliment of traffic is going to be a bit of a shock otherwise!