Strong, blue and shiny - you can't miss these wheels. Melbourne Bike Share has hit the CBD streets, as the city increasingly looks for ways to offer sustainable and healthy transport options to locals and visitors alike.
The Bikes Last year, I came across the Vélib system in Paris and loved the ease of grabbing a bicycle and zooming along side the Seine. So the chance to try Melbourne's system got a thumbs up from me. The bikes are somewhat heavier then your usual bike and yes, I had to work at going up the 'hills' in the CBD, however overall they've been well thought out to cover most riders needs. These include three gears (better then none), an adjustable seat, a skirt guard for the rear wheel and a chain guard to protect from nasty incidents of your clothes getting caught or greasy. As well as a small rack with an elastic strap to pop your bag up front, mud guards on both wheels and wide tyres to aid balance.
You're Interested and Wonder how the System Works?
The ease of the bicycle system is shown by the fact that there are fifty docking stations operating 24 hours a day around the CBD. Once you've brought your chosen daily, weekly or annual subscription, happily take a bike and return it to a docking station around town within your subscriber time frame.
TIP: Make the most of your first half an hour or the first hour if you are a corporate subscriber as it's free. Charges apply per hour there after. Trips longer then two hours can see your change quickly dwindling (note you'll need a credit card to buy a subscription from a docking station) and might be better spent on hiring a bike or going with a tour.
Helmets Compulsory helmet laws apply when riding in Melbourne. If you do not have one on the day you have a few options up your sleeve:
1. Rent or purchase a stack hat from specified retail outlets. 2. Purchase one from the helmet vending machines at Southern Cross Station and Melbourne University. 3. If you are a subscriber purchase a helmet for $20 with your annual membership.
Been awhile between peddles?
You know the saying 'it's like riding a bike', however if you are in the need of a few tips to get back in the seat, try Bikes@Work, who offer discounted training sessions for Melbourne Bike Share subscribers.