Part two of the Wheeled Thing review of Nordic bike share systems is Helsinki, where they have named their system City Bikes. I hope they did not shell out too much to the marketing firm for that one.
On the good side:
- It only costs $12 (10 €) for a week of riding, but if you go over that, it’s only $1.20 (1 €) for the next hour.
- You can sign up online, just click here. Once you register you get a UserID # and select a password.
- You can use a USA Phone number to sign up!
- To take out a bicycle, you don’t need to visit a kiosk – just select a bike and enter your ID/password combo on the handlebar computer to take out a bike.
- The bike has a lock cable which allows you to walk away from the bike. The clock is still ticking on your rental, but its good to have the option.
- You never have to worry about finding reaching a dock that is full. The same cable can be used to secure the bike within 20 meters of the dock to end your rental
On the bad side:
- It was sometimes challenging to find a bike – as the full docks were really, really full – and there were lots of empty docks.
- No app! This makes it difficult to find docks. You need to compare the station map to GoogleMaps and life. It is hard enough to pronounce the names of these stations (MESSENIUKSENKATU, MEILAHDEN SAIRAALA or JÄTKÄSAARENLAITURI) let alone type them into your smart phone.
Helsinki City Bikes is the 2nd best bike share of the Nordic Capitals.