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Travel and lift sharing for grass root clubs, green travel, lift sharing tips, match day travel, social impact.

Travel & Lift Sharing

We are working with clubs and teams to support you, the parents and coaches to make lift sharing easier.

How to increase
lift sharing

Reasons to Lift Share:

  • Save time and share the journey with others

  • Save fuel costs

  • Boost morale in your child's team

  • Reduce the environmental impacts and air pollution around training clubs and venues

  • Make training venues safer with less cars.

Lift Sharing Tips:

  • Find out who lives in close proximity or enroute

  • Give it a try for a few weeks. You may be concerned that you or other parents may be late. Most people who give it a go are surprised at how well it works!

  • Organise social events so parents get to know each other - as simple as having a cup of coffee together!

  • Share lifts with other parents - This way you don't miss out on watching your child, and you can take it in turns. This also removes any concerns about being responsible for other children.

  • Create a WhatsApp group for lift sharing. It makes it easier for lifts to be arranged outside of other chats that carry on in your team WhatsApp.

Case Study: How parents are overcoming lift sharing challenges in Birmingham

Birmingham County FA have been conducting research with Sustainable Sidekicks as part of a project funded by the Centre for Sustainable Energy to understand more about travel in grassroots football and the barriers and motivations to lift sharing. 

During interviews with coaches and parents, one of the key barriers cited by parents of younger children cited for doing anything other than driving (walking, cycling, public transport or lift sharing) was the limited time in the early evening before training.


When prompted further about lift sharing parents were also concerned that:

  • They or other parents would be late

  • They would miss supporting their child if another parent drove

  • They didn't know other parents following the pandemic.


However, researchers also spoke to parents and youth teams who were lift sharing to training. These were people who:

  • Lived close by - within 1 to 2 miles

  • Travelled with their children so they could watch and support

  • Knew each other from social events put on by coaches. 


Giving It A Go

 As the next phase of the research, BCFA worked with Crusaders and Sporting FC coaches to support parents to give lift sharing a go. Coaches played a pivotel role in:


  • Connecting parents who live close together - coaches introduced parents who lived locally to each other

  • Starting dedicated WhatsApp groups to communicate about lifts

  • Organising social events so parents got to know each other

  • Offering lifts to people who lived close to them

  • Encouraging parents to jump in the car as well - this overcame a desire to be pitch side and any child safety concerns

  • Providing lifts for players and their parents.


“Besides the obvious benefits to the environment, which are very important. When players and parents share lifts, they tend to be more likely to arrive on time and it gives everyone a good opportunity to do some team bonding. So I’m all for it.”


The Benefits for Coaches

Coaches have a lot of responsibilities, as well as often being parents of players too. Being a coach, arriving on time is of course essential. To ensure he was on time, Sporting FC coach Sean found giving a slightly earlier meeting time accounted for any lateness. Both Sporting FC coaches Lee and Sean noted the benefits of connecting more with players and parents.  


"I found it was nice to get to talk with others outside of football which allows you to get to know them better. The opportunity to talk to the parents and give advice on their training is really helpful as you wouldn’t get the opportunity at the end of the training session as everyone goes home" Lee, Coach at Sporting FC.


“Yesterday's lift sharing was a joy got to learn more and more of the children's ambitions for football and where they seem themselves” Sean, Coach at Sporting FC.

Sporting FC

Just before the end of the season, three coaches from Sporting FC agreed to reach out to their teams parents to have a lift sharing trial. Two coaches started collecting children and a parent who lived close by identifying the benefits of getting to know parents and children better. Sporting FC parent Emma gave lift sharing a go with two families close by to their home.


Initially, she had been concerned about it taking longer, when it is a rush after school.  However her experience was that it did not take long for me to grab other players as they co-ordinated with people live in the same area.

The parents agreed to a 3-week rota, with another parent coming in the car along with the three children. Following the trial they have decided to continue the 3-week rota because:


“It gives parents more time and flexibility if they can't always go to training and saves money”


For other parents and coaches considering lift sharing she recommends “putting up a local map in the clubhouse and parents tick where they live and see who is near who and more people may get involved.”


Crusaders FC

Crusaders a grassroots club based in Bournville, an area that sits within the top 30% most deprived in Birmingham. The club has 21 teams ranging from U7’s through to adult with pathway provision for male & female participants.


Tuesday and Wednesday evenings are very busy with training. There are often safety concerns as parents park on double-yellow lines reducing visibility for children crossing the roads. The team actively worked with coaches to identify parents who could lift share, shared stories and case studies on social media and organised a parents’ social event for those who didn't know each other due to COVID.


Three youth teams gave lift sharing a go, as well as the ladies, who were already doing it, sharing their stories and experiences on social media to encourage other parents and teams to give it a go.


Through the lifts shared, we calculated that four teams saved 687 miles a season equating to £200.

Top Tips for Informal Liftsharing

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