Travel differently

Utrecht University is working on a better world. Not only through research and education, but also by stimulating students and staff to travel sustainably. 

In 2018, around 25% of the annual CO2  impact consisted of transport; commuting, transporting goods and travelling abroad. The university wants to reduce this number in the coming years by taking various measures.


With the train zone, Utrecht University encourages employees to travel by train within Europe. The train zone map shows which destinations are easily accessible. Employees are responsible for following this travel advice.

The international train is quiet and comfortable so I can work wonderfully undisturbed.

Dr. Peter Kuipers Munneke
Polar meteorologist & weather presenter Dutch Public Broadcasting


Sustainable travel also means consciously thinking about whether a trip is really necessary. The travel check helps to make this decision.

  • Dr. Dea van Lierop researches if and how to make commuters loyal to sustainable forms of transit. For this she studies the travel behaviour of Utrecht University employees.
  • The twenty-two charging stations for electric cars in the Utrecht Science Park are part of a project in which locally generated power is stored in e-car batteries. This energy can then be fed back into the grid.
  • With shared bicycles on campus dr. Jacco Farla researches how ‘dockless shared bicycles’ contribute to the transition towards a sustainable city mobility system.


In 2018, the first electric car in university colours drove across campus. Within a few years, the university will make its entire fleet electric. In total, the university has about forty cars driving around for research, security, first aid and transport. Employees can also borrow an electric car for appointments off campus that are difficult to reach by public transport. 


More than half of the students and employees of Utrecht University come by bicycle. That's about 20,000 cyclists. The university's parking policy is specifically aimed at making the Utrecht Science Park car-free. The university's own parking fee encourages employees to come by public transport or by bicycle. 


From the end of December 2019, a tram line will run from Utrecht Central Station to the Utrecht Science Park. The trams run on green electricity.


Utrecht University compensates all air travel-related CO2 impacts by contributing to projects that meet the strictest standard for CO2 reduction (Gold Standard).