Bicycles as public transit

I wrote about Bicing, Barcelona’s new bicycle-sharing program, a little while ago. It came into effect the day we left Barcelona, back in May, so we didn’t have a chance to use it when we lived there. We finally got a chance to see it in practice when we were there over the Christmas holidays. I’m sold!

The system is simple – for 24 euros/year you can get a card that allows you to check out bicycles from any of the hundreds of spots around the city. The first half an hour is free, then you pay 30 cents for every half an hour up to 2 hours. After that you pay a higher fine. The point is that you shouldn’t need more than half an hour to get from point A to point B, where you can drop off the bike in another bike stand. Joy and Jesús lent us their cards and off we went around the city in our bikes!

Bicing Stands

Taking pictures

We even took a bike to go only 3 blocks!!

To our delight, our other favourite city also started a similar service! Called Velib’, the Parisian system was equally ubiquitous and open to all.  There it costs 29 euros/year or 5 euro/week, 1 euro/day. We saw the bike stands all over the place but didn’t use it because it was a bit too cold when we were there.

Velib Velib

Author: guerson

Born and raised in Brazil, a Canadian stole my heart and took me to Canada in 1999. After seven years between Montreal and Toronto, we then moved to Barcelona, Spain, where I did research for my PhD thesis. This blog began as a chronicle of our adventures while living in Barcelona and exploring the old world and has acquired a life of its own after we moved back to Canada.

3 thoughts on “Bicycles as public transit”

  1. Que beleza! Bem que essa idéia poderia ser implementada por aqui! Diminui o trânsito e a poluição, além de exercitar o corpo.
    :)

  2. I had heard bout this idea. And I’m glad to know that it is working properly. Wen it came out, many pepole joked about the possibility that in a few days most bikes had been stolen. You know, the Spanish ‘picaresca’.

    But it seems that Spain, or at least a part of it, is becoming a civilized country.

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