Welcome to the wonderful world of benefit bikes!
Some good news to start with...
1. The benefit bike is a tax-free benefit (up to 100€/mo), so you can save 20-40% on the bike's original price.
2. You are free to use your benefit bike for any cycling adventures, whether work-related or not.
3. You can get basically any bike you like from a practically endless selection.
What's a benefit bike? Who's Vapaus? What is this talk about taxes? What do you mean I can save 20-40%? Don't worry, we'll tell you all about it on this page.
All the math you need to decide which bike to get. We already told you about the savings, but the numbers speak for themselves. Remember to keep the benefit bike calculator within an arm's reach.
All Vapaus benefit bikes are protected by broad insurance against theft and damage as standard. On top of that, you can get sweet extras like a handy maintenance budget or additional security for when life happens.
HOW TO GET A BENEFIT BIKE
We've made it as easy as it gets! Visit one of our many partner stores and enjoy in-person service, or find your dream bike online. Getting your benefit bike is easy, and you can choose from a practically unlimited selection.
1. What is a benefit bike?
A benefit bike is a tax-free employee benefit up to €1200/year (€100/month). The tax incentive is embedded in the benefit to encourage cycling. Employers can choose to offer the benefit as part of an employee's salary, partially supported, or fully on top of the salary.
When you get your benefit bike, you are free to use it for any cycling adventures, whether work-related or not. There is no regulation stating that you should use the bike for commuting. Similarly, you are free to choose any type of bike from Vapaus' practically unlimited selection.
The tax incentive results in savings for you. A benefit bike is 20 - 40% cheaper than when purchased without the benefit.
2. WHO Is VAPAUS?
Vapaus (that us, yay) is a service provider who handles benefit bike programs for companies like your employer. We take care of the leasing of the bikes and related services, including insurance and comprehensive customer service for both your employer and you.
We are cycling aficionados on a mission to advance happy, healthy, and sustainable mobility – one cycled kilometer at a time.
the numbers – how much you can save
A benefit bike will save you a considerable amount of money. In this part, let's go through a bit of numbers to see how the savings work.
Take some time to understand the examples. You don't need to be a math geek to figure this out. And when you do, you'll get pretty excited to find your shiny new bike. 😉
You'll also learn what a taxable value is so you can enlighten your friends and colleagues. Let's dive in.
TAXABLE VALUE ANd bike lease periods
Your benefit bike will always come with a taxable value and a lease period. These will be adjusted to your needs and the purchasing price of your bike package.
what is a Lease period?
When you get a benefit bike, you choose how long you want to have the benefit. The lease period is measured in months, and each month you pay a set amount for using the bike. In practice, the lease period is longer for more expensive bikes.
Once your lease period is over, you can redeem your bike by paying its residual value (5%). It's just like buying a bike with down payments, only a lot cheaper because you get the tax incentive and there's no interest in your monthly payments.
taxable value - Sounds more intimidating than it is
Simply put, the taxable value is the cost of using your benefit bike each month. The taxable value is determined by the price of the bike and the length of the lease period. A cheap bike with a short lease period can have the same taxable value as a more expensive bike with a longer lease period.
The taxable value is usually set between €50 and €100. The taxable value is deducted from your gross salary each month during the lease period (when the employer offers the benefit as part of your salary). Due to the tax incentive, you save the most when the taxable value is as close to €100/month as possible.
A BEnefit bike is tax-free up to €100/month
Once more: as long as your taxable value is €100/month or less, your benefit is fully tax-free! That means you save money. We know this can be difficult to grasp in plain text, so let's have a look at example calculations.
How does the taxable value affect your salary and savings?
Your employer can offer you a benefit bike in three different ways:
- As part of your gross salary
- Partially on top of your gross salary
- Fully on top of your gross salary
Option 1 is the most common, because it results in the largest overall tax benefit. Your employer's salary costs go down, and so does your tax rate, because your taxable income decreases by the amount of the taxable value. Here's how it works in practice:
The taxable value is deducted from your gross salary
Sounds intimidating, but it's not actually a bad thing.
Let's say the taxable value of the bike you want is €100/month. Does that mean you'll be paid €100 less each month? In gross salary, yes. In net salary, no.
Because of how taxes work, your net salary won't be reduced by as much as the taxable value. As you can see in the example chart, a €100 gross salary deduction only results in a €56 lower net salary.
more Example calculations
The tables below illustrate the different ways an employer can offer the bike benefit. The first table describes the most common situation, where the benefit is offered as part of (is fully deducted from) the employee's gross salary.
Getting a benefit bike is not only cheaper, but you get additional services and optional extras to make your experience even smoother.
Each Vapaus benefit bike comes with broad insurance against theft and vandalism. This is valid in Finland and abroad.
Let's have a look at the goodies that you can get bundled with your benefit bike. Our employee guide includes more detailed descriptions of each service.
THese are INCLUDED
Top-notch customer service
If you need help with anything benefit bike-related, from answering questions to helping you choose the right bike for your needs, we're here for you! Also our partner stores are happy to help you get started.
Because we deal with a lot of bikes, we've got a sweet deal on insurance that extends to you! All our bikes are fully insured with the best coverage available at no extra cost. In case something happens, all you have to do is pay the deductible. We'll handle all the compensation applications for you. Check out the video below for more info on the insurance policy.
You can choose to include a maintenance budget in your taxable value, which means that you can let professionals take care of your bike while enjoying the same tax-free treatment as you do with the bike's purchasing price.
The optional maintenance budget can be set to €10, €12, €16, or €20/month, and you can use it for maintenance work and spare parts. This being an optional extra, you can of course choose to not include a maintenance bike in the taxable value, and take care of the bike yourself.
This video explains a few key things about the maintenance budget:
In many cases, the bike manufacturer's warranty expires before the lease period ends. Because it would really suck if you'd have to pay for expensive repairs during your lease, we offer the option to extend the warranty with the same conditions for the entire lease period.
Sometimes things just don't work out. Perhaps conditions change and you no longer need a benefit bike. With our cancellation coverage, you can back out of your lease at any time for a set price – no questions asked and no strings attached.
Remember to check whether your employer offers a company-wide cancellation coverage. If yes, you don't need to select it as an optional extra.
Where and how to get your benefit bike
With the boring stuff out of the way, it's time to turn that bike dream of yours into reality!
Whether you get your bike from one of our partner stores or order it online, getting your hands on a shiny new set of wheels is simple and straightforward.
Remember that you can always reach out to our customer service if you need advice or help with choosing the right bike for you!
create a profile in the vapaus app
This is a mandatory first step, regardless of whether you purchase your bike from a partner store or online.
- Create an account and log in from the Vapaus app link below
- Once you are logged in, go to the settings, fill out the required information, and confirm your work email and social security number. The social security number is needed for the lease agreements.
Getting your bike from a partner store
If you want personal service and help with choosing the perfect bike for you, we recommend visiting our partner bike stores. To find a store, look at our list of partner stores and choose one that suits you. Then, go to the store and tell them you want to get a Vapaus benefit bike. The staff will help you get everything set up.
ordering your bike online
If you can't find what you want locally, you can get your bike from one of our international partner shops by placing an order in the Vapaus App. When ordering from one of our international partners you get a fixed rate on delivery and there is no extra service fee for your order. You can fin a list of our international partners here.
NOTE: Online orders always come with shipping costs, you can check out the delivery costs of our different partners here.
SAVE money and THE ENVIRONMENT BY GETTING A vapaus PRECYCLED BIKE
Our Precycled store offers fully inspected and serviced pre-owned bikes that have been freed up from their previous benefit bike users. The bikes are fully insured, and our extended warranty is available. This is the perfect opportunity to snag a dream bike at an affordable price with no additional impact on the environment!
The Precycled bike selection is updated every time a new bike becomes available. See what's available right now from the link below:
If you have any questions about anything related to getting your benefit bike, first check if you can find the answer to your question in our helpful knowledge base:
You can also always reach out to our customer service using our customer service chat or this contact form. We can give you advice on everything bike-related and even place orders on your behalf.