Dublin Bikes has been a resounding success since their introduction in 2014. These Coca-Cola sponsored bikes are an affordable and fast way to zip around Dublin City. But now, building on a popular concept from China, Dublin has a new way to rent bikes called BleeperBikes. Here’s how the two systems stack up against each other.
What are Dublin Bikes?
Dublin Bikes is a public bike rental scheme powered by several stations around Dublin. Since the introduction of the service, there have been almost 19.5m journeys using Dublin Bikes. Members can grab a bike at any station and cycle to another station or actually lock-up the bike anywhere at all. The only catch is, once away from the station, that bike is ‘in-use’ and liable for charges.
How much do Dublin Bikes cost?
First of all, you pay an annual subscription of €25 for Dublin Bikes. This fee also includes the first half-hour of any journey you take. Here are the full range of costs:
You can see that the Dublin Bikes pricing system generally encourages users to get from A to B and to dock back at a station to save some money.
What are BleeperBikes?
BleeperBikes isn’t a million miles away from the core concept of Dublin Bikes. The main difference is that there are no stations. Instead, you park the bike up using a fixed smart lock. Dublin City Council were none-too-pleased with this idea fearing a repeat of what this system led to in China. There was a blatant abandonment of bikes everywhere, with bikes locked to anything and everything imaginable.
Despite opposition, BleeperBikes launched and simply emphasised the importance of proper bike parking. This is reinforced by a points system which rewards correct usage of the bikes.
How much do BleeperBikes cost?
There’s no annual charge for using BleeperBikes. Instead, you pay by the ride. €5 will get you 5 rides with a €25 top-up getting you 27 rides. By the way, one ride is up to one hour of usage.
Which is better? Dublin Bikes or BleeperBikes?
That’s a really tough question. Each has a unique selling point that the competitor doesn’t have. It all depends on which suits your personal needs best. Here are the pros and cons:
What’s the craic with Dublin Bikes:
|Free half hour with annual membership||Stations can be either full or empty|
|Consistent location for bike stations around Dublin||Full station? It’ll cost you unless you find another one|
|Useless if there’s no station near where you’re going|
What’s the craic with BleeperBikes:
|Park anywhere once parked properly||Anyone can take your parked bike|
|Consistent location for bikes||No free rides included|
|You can earn free rides|
As you can see, it’s a fairly tight race between both Dublin-based bike-sharing options. The most important thing for users of both services is that competition brings value. Both services also have unique selling points to benefit users at different times so there’s no harm in the likes of BleeperBikes challenging Dublin Bikes for the public’s interest.
Sign up to Bleeper Bikes now and get your first ride free to see if it’s the kind of service that suits you.