TRY THIS: Velocia is a free mobility app that rewards people for getting out of single-occupancy vehicles, and it just launched in Miami. The app rewards you for riding Metrobus, Metrorail, hopping on a Citi Bike or e-scooting that first mile/last mile of your trip. Those rewards can then be redeemed for credits in mobility apps you’re already using like Lyft and Uber.
Just this week, Velocia was one of a dozen projects awarded a Public Space Challenge grant.
WHY TRY IT?: Velocia rewards you for moving around in ways that reduce traffic congestion, decrease carbon emissions and increase pure enjoyment. They want you to try new stuff, new modes of travel. Would you consider taking Metrorail if you got credit to ride a scooter for free during the last mile of your journey? That’s what they hope to find out.
So what are these credits? They call them VELOS. It’s kind of similar to other rewards programs except that it is maniacally focused on mobility. Like Regal movie rewards, you’re going to the movies anyway, why not earn points to redeem for a free popcorn. In Velocia’s case you are going to work or school anyway, why not earn VELOS for free rides. You might also just help Miami solve traffic as you collect VELOS; free popcorn not so much.
“Our goal is to have transparent and generous ways for our users to earn benefits during their commute,” said David Winterstein, CEO of Velocia. “The idea is that we really want to encourage the growth of the ecosystem so that rewards are a daily happening.”
There’s no denying that traffic and mobility is one of Miami’s top concerns — we see the impacts of this daily. And outside of major infrastructure projects, which require large investments and often years to complete, Velocia is one immediate step everyone can take toward addressing our mobility challenges in Miami.
By incentivizing and inspiring new patterns of behavior, Velocia can begin moving people out of their cars, one day and one mile at a time.
“Creating a virtuous cycle of rewarding people to start thinking differently of how they move in cities helps put – it may sound cheesy – but it helps put a bit of the adventure into daily commuting,” Winterstein said.
MOST SURPRISING FACT: It’s a human-centered business solution created with Miami-Dade in mind. Velocia was developed at the Fastrack Institute during a 16-week competition to develop new private enterprises with the sole aim of encouraging the citizens of Miami-Dade to help solve traffic by getting out of their single-occupancy vehicles.
HOW TO TRY IT: Download the app and start connecting the forms of transit you’re already using to earn credits immediately. Some quick ways to earn VELOS are registering your health app (to record your walking), taking their daily user surveys and connecting their partner MaaS apps (Miami-Dade Transit EASY Card, Getaround, CitiBike, SwiftSeat, Bolt).