Back to all

European Certification Standard

The European Certification Standard (ECS) is a unique and comprehensive methodology designed by ECF to assess the quality of cycle routes. It can be used to survey and assess the quality of national/regional routes, and to certify EuroVelo routes if the criteria are met. It can help set up national standards where they do not exist and harmonise the different regulations in the European states.

See the new ECS leaflet for a general introduction to the methodology!

How does ECS work?

ECS logo
European Certification Standard Logo

ECS is a successful methodology for route surveying, which consists of collecting data on infrastructure, services and communications using the dedicated ECS app. The survey enables a comprehensive assessment of the quality of cycle routes, and helps stakeholders to understand development needs and plan further investments. It also generates useful information for the end users.

When applied to EuroVelo routes, if the correct set of criteria are met, ECS can lead to routes becoming fully certified. "Certification" is the highest quality level on the EuroVelo network. Once achieved, certification is valid for five years.

How to use ECS?

Every year, ECS organises trainings for individuals to become EuroVelo Route Inspectors. Only these trained inspectors can apply the ECS methodology.

Surveying of the route is performed with the ECS app, which requires the purchase of a three-year license directly from ECF.

The next EuroVelo Route Inspectors Training will be taking place in April 2024. More information on this training course and how to register is available on this page.

Please subscribe to the EuroVelo Newsletter to stay up to date with the location, precise date, costs etc. If you would like to receive more information on the training, please send an email to [email protected].

The following list contains the contact details of the official European Route Inspectors who agreed to be named on this website:

List of Official EuroVelo Route Inspectors

N.B.: Only those Official Route Inspectors who have requested to be displayed on are available here. If you want to update this information, to be added or removed, please contact [email protected].

ECS app

ECS app homescreen

EuroVelo Route Inspectors use an app specifically designed to evaluate long-distance cycle routes: the European Certification Standard app. With the ECS application, data can be collected offline in the field, using an Android phone with a functioning GPS system.

The ECS application for surveying the route has been newly updated from 2019 to 2021 in collaboration with Cartographia. It is a tool to improve the collection of data, which is uploaded from the field with the app and can then be analysed on the desktop. This app has been designed for Android devices only.

EuroVelo Route Inspectors receive the link to download this app when taking the Route Inspectors Training.

What results?

  • Detailed GIS data about a cycle route (useful for quality communications).
  • Identification of improvement needs and an action plan with investment priorities.
  • Required for EuroVelo Certification label.

Who can use ECS?

Cycle route managers, infrastructure authorities, EU funded projects and other relevant stakeholders.

ECS in the route development process

The European Certification Standard can be used in different stages of the route development:

  • Planning of the route: Identify a viable corridor with a strong theme
  • Route survey: Identify strong and weak points of the route
  • Action plan: Plan and prioritise actions to ensure consistent quality
  • Certification: Verify the results of implemented actions
  • Certified route: Periodically check the quality of the product

In case several route variants are being surveyed in the process of identifying a viable corridor for a EuroVelo route, the ECF preference generally goes for the more direct routes, unless there are strong reasons to choose otherwise (e.g. too much elevation change, traffic or bad surface quality on the most direct corridor). More information is available in the Handbook for Route Inspectors.


For a summary of the main aspects of ECS, download the promotional ECS leaflet and feel free to circulate it among stakeholders who might be interested in this methodology.

For a quick introduction to basic principles and criteria of the ECS, see the Quality criteria for long-distance cycle routes, set out in the ECS manual, published within the EuroVelo manual series for a broader public.

A thorough explanation of the categories and criteria for monitoring the quality level of EuroVelo routes and assessing any long-distance cycle route according to the ECS methodology is available in the European Certification Standard Handbook for Route Inspectors, last updated in December 2021. This "long manual" is shared with trained EuroVelo Route Inspectors and relevant partners. Please get in touch with the EuroVelo Management Team via [email protected] if you would like to request more information.