Cycle hire charges doubled for longer journeys

Cycle hire charges doubled for most longer journeys

Under the headline ‘Simpler’ Transport for London is doubling the cycle hire charge for anyone using a hire bike for between thirty minutes and an hour. This is the second major tariff increase for the scheme. The original daily access fee of £1 for casual users was doubled to £2 in January 2013.

TfL says the new charges are simpler because the fee will increase by a standard £2 every thirty minutes after the first ‘free’ thirty minutes instead of the charge rate increasing the longer the bike was kept in use without docking. Thus after one hour the fee will now be £2 instead of £1; after 1.5 hours £4 at both old and new rates;  after 2 hours £6 at both old and new rates ; and after 2.5 hours £8 at the new rate and £10 at the old rate.

What TfL has not publicised is that the previous caps on charges at  6 hours (£35) and 24 hours (£50) have now been removed with only a single late return charge of £300 after seven days. So anyone who keeps a bike for 24 hours will have to pay a new fee of £94.

According to TfL 24% of casual hires run over the 30 minute free period. They say most (97%) of hires by registered scheme members terminate within 30 minutes.

The new charges will be implemented from the 2nd of January 2015.