I earn National Minimum (or Living) Wage - how can I participate?
If you earn National Minimum (or Living) wage, you are often precluded from being able to have a conventional salary sacrifice as any deduction from your salary would take you below a legally acceptable pay rate.
The Government's website states:
"A salary sacrifice arrangement must not reduce an employee’s cash earnings below the National Minimum Wage (NMW) rates. Employers must put procedures in place to cap salary sacrifice deduction and ensure NMW rates are maintained."
What are the solutions?:
There are a few options that Cyclescheme and/or your employer can offer you so that you can get cycling.
- If you earn a few pence over National Minimum (or Living) Wage you may be able to join
- Bike rental might be a more affordable option
- Your employer could offer you access to a pool bike
Have you used the Cyclescheme calculator to check your savings?
The calculator (when used in conjunction with your employer code) is highly indicative of what you will save and will help you understand if your employer's scheme is suitable for you. If you find you cannot save when you enter your details, you may wish to consider the options ↓ below ↓ .
I earn just over NMW/NLW - how do I apply for the cycle to work scheme?
There’s no minimum value for bikes or accessories on Cyclescheme. Let’s say you have seen a bike and equipment that adds up to £208. You’re paid weekly and you work 37 hours a week. Your weekly salary sacrifice over one year would be just £4 (£208 divided by 52 weeks). You would need to be earning 11 pence more than the NMW (i.e. £4 divided by 37 hours) to afford this.
Your employer could help you participate in Cyclescheme by offering a longer salary sacrifice period – for example, running the scheme over 18, 24 or 36 months instead of 12. In the example above, the salary sacrifice payments would be only £2 per week rather than £4 if you made payments over two years rather than one. That would make the £208 package affordable even if you earned only 6p above the NMW. If you earned 11p or more above the NMW, you might sacrifice £4 over two years rather than one to get a package worth £416 instead of £208. To set up longer-duration schemes like this, your employer simply needs to contact Cyclescheme, as our systems will accommodate a variety of options.
Bike rental might be a more affordable option
If you are very close to the NMW it might be that a bike rental membership or subscription could be a more affordable way to cycle to work. Depending on which plan you go with this might also avoid you needing to keep the bike at home or even having to maintain it yourself.
Take a look at our bike rental plans to see if one could meet your needs.
Many employers support their employees by offering pool bikes (Some employers use their National Insurance Contributions savings to fund such schemes).
If you are a National Minimum (or Living) Wage earner then a pool bike may be a great way for your employer to support you in getting into the habit of cycle commuting.
If you're unsure if your workplace has pool bikes, simply contact your employer and check.
How to get great deals
Cyclescheme has lots of content on how to get great value bikes.
You may wish to check out: