Travel Responsibly and Sustainably Use Bike Sharing – When you find yourself in a large city, it is always recommended to use public transportation. In public transportation we can also include bike sharing system. Bike sharing is a service in which bicycles are available to individuals for shared use on a very short term basis. Concept is to provide free or affordable access to bicycles for short distance trips in urban areas as an alternative to motorised public transport or private cars, thereby reducing traffic jams, noise and air pollution.
Bike share programs are networks of public use bicycles distributed around a city for use at low cost. Bicycles can be obtained at any self-service bike-station and returned at any bike-station, which makes bike shares ideal for “Point A to Point B” transportation or simply to explore an area surrounding a bike-station.
Bike share programs are used by a wide variety of people of all ages. Commuters, recreational/errand riders, and tourists are the three main user groups. Most bike-share users are not competitive cyclists.
The benefits of bike-sharing programs in any city are plentiful. They cut down traffic congestion and alleviate parking shortages; reduce air pollution and health effects such as asthma and bronchitis; promote fitness; and enable good complementary public transportation by allowing commuters to ride from and to train or bus stations.
As at April 2013 there were around 535 bike-sharing programmes around the world, made of an estimated fleet of 517,000 bicycles. The number of systems is growing rapidly: in May 2011 there were around 375 schemes comprising 236,000 bikes. The Wuhan andHangzhou Public Bicycle programmes in China are the largest in the world, with around 90,000 and 60,000 bicycles respectively. In Hangzhou there are over 2,400 stations. The Vélib’ in Paris, which comprises around 20,000 bicycles and 1,450 bicycle stations, is the largest outside of China. The countries with the most systems are Spain (132), Italy (104), and China (79).
If you will be using bike sharing system on your travels, here is a list where you can find them.
Have you ever used it?