Frequently Asked Questions

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What is bike share?

Bike share is an easy, affordable mode of transportation that allows users to make trips using sturdy, publicly available bikes. Riders use bike share to supplement other transportation options, such as subways, buses, walking, and private automobiles.

Citi Bike is New York City’s oldest bike share system and Beryl is New York City’s newest bike share program on Staten Island.

 

Citi Bike

What is Citi Bike?

Citi Bike is the bike share system available in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and soon, the Bronx. The system is run through a public-private partnership between New York City and Lyft. Citi Bike is a station-based bike share system. Riders unlock bikes from one station and return and lock the bike at any other station in the system, making bike share ideal for short, one-way trips.

 

Why does New York need a bike share system?

Citi Bike provides New Yorkers with more options forgetting around the city. A majority of all trips made in the City are less than two miles. Bike share gives New Yorkers a cheap, easy, efficient and fast option for these trips by providing ready access to a bike, without having to worry about storage or maintenance.

Bike share also leverages the City’s great mass transit system by extending the reach of transit. Half of all of Citi Bike trips are made to get to or from a public transit station. In this way, Citi Bike is not a replacement for any single mode of transportation, but adds to New York’s diverse transportation options.

 

How does Citi Bike work?

Riders unlock a bike at any of the systems 800+ stations using their a key fob or one-time code and have use of the bike for 30-45 minutes, depending on the rental trip type. Riders then dock or lock the bike at any station in the system. Users who keep the bike for longer than the allocated time are charged a small convenience fee. This ensure that bikes are available for as many riders as possible throughout the day.

For more information on Citi Bike visit the "How It Works" page on the Citi Bike website.

 

How big is the current Citi Bike system?

Citi Bike is the nation's largest bike share system. The system currently has 13,000 bikes and over 800 stations, more than double the size of the system at launch in 2013!

The system continues to grow. In 2019, the City and Lyft announced a multi-year system expansion to double the service area and triple the number of bikes to 40,000 total. Please visit the Home or the News & Events tabs to get information on expansion timelines and progress or read the press release for additional information about expansion. A map of the expansion is also available for view.

 

How much does it cost to ride Citi Bike?

Citi Bike’s pricing structure is designed to encourage short trips. Annual memberships, best suited for New Yorkers, give users unlimited 45-minute rides and cost $169 per year or $15 per month. Citi Bike also offers day passes, best suited for tourists or visitors, which cost $12 a day and includes unlimited 30-minute rides, and single rides, which cost $3 for one 30-minute ride. Additional fees can be applied for exceeding the time limit or using an electric Citi Bike.

Citi Bike also offers a discounted annual membership for $60/year, or $5/month. Those eligible include:

  • People living in New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) housing
  • People receiving Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits
  • Members of participating Community Development Credit Unions (CDCU)

Please visit the Reduced Fare Bike Share page or the CDCU page for more information. Current pricing information is available at Citi Bike's pricing page. Additional discounts for Citi Bike, such as discounts for active military/veterans, MasterCard holders, and residents with an IDNYC can be found on the pricing page.

 

Who runs Citi Bike?

Citi Bike is a public-private partnership between the City of New York, represented by the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), and Lyft.. Lyft is a private company that owns and operates bike share systems around the country. Lyft owns, operates, and maintains the Citi Bike system and the City allows Lyft to place bike share stations in the public right of way (primarily on sidewalks and roadbeds). DOT is responsible for planning, outreach, and oversight of the system.

No taxpayer monies are used to operate the Citi Bike system. Citi Bike is funded through private capital, sponsorship agreements, and revenues from memberships.

How are station locations selected?

Since 2011, DOT has conducted an extensive and participatory public input process. This process involves holding interactive workshops and meeting with Community Boards, elected officials, community organizations and other stakeholders to gather input.

DOT also provides the opportunity for those who may not be able to attend a public meeting. On DOT’s online feedback map, people can suggest future station locations. This public input creates a system designed by and for New Yorkers.

DOT strives to balance various uses and needs of our streets. The agency locates bike share stations using multiple criteria, including:

  • sidewalk width
  • ADA Accessibility
  • parking and curb usage
  • proximity to street furniture and underground utilities, and
  • station density

 

Is Citi Bike safe?

Citi Bike has a strong safety record. Citi Bikes are very stable, not capable of high speeds, and are routinely maintained by professional mechanics. Citi Bikes have a number of built-in safety features, including sturdy breaks, a bell, and lights that flash as soon as the wheels start rolling. Learn more about the bike itself.

In 2019, Mayor de Blasio announced the Green Wave plan. This plan focuses on improving bicycle infrastructure, as well as education and enforcement of existing traffic rules and regulations. For detailed information on what this plan entails, please view the original report (PDF) or the February 2020 progress report (PDF), both available in the Resources tab. Additionally, please visit the Current Bike Route Projects  page to learn more about DOT’s bicycle infrastructure projects.

 

Are helmets included?

Citi Bike does not provide helmets as part of its memberships and riders over the age of 13 are not required to wear helmets. However, the City of New York strongly encourages the use of helmets while cycling, whether on a personal bike or a Citi Bike. DOT distributes over 25,000 helmets per year through various events. Call or visit 311 for more information on being fitted for a free helmet or visit the DOT's Facebook "Events" Page.

 

Is there a Citi Bike app?

Yes, the Citi Bike app provides real-time information on bike and dock availability across the Citi Bike system. The app also includes trip information including a trip timer, ride history and suggested cycling routes. Single rides can also be purchased through the Citi Bike app.

Available for iOS and Android.

 

What role does Citibank play in operating or planning Citi Bike?

Citibank is the title sponsor of Citi Bike. Citibank does not advise in any aspect of the planning or operation of Citi Bike.

 

What kind of data does the system generate, and who can access it?

Data on when and where each Citi Bike is checked out and checked back in is available to the public. All data in an anonymized format. A real time data feed, monthly operating reports, and daily ridership and membership data broken down quarterly are also available.

All data can be found at Citi Bike's System Data page.

 

What kind of jobs does Citi Bike create?

Citi Bike has created many new jobs in New York City and will continue to do so as the system expands. From bicycle mechanics to administrative staff, Citi Bike is always looking for people to help run the system.

Please visit Citi Bike’s website to view their current job listings.

Beryl

What is dockless bike share?

Dockless bike share is a network of publicly available bikes designed for short point to point trips. However, unlike station-based bike share systems including Citi Bike, dockless bike share systems do not use stations. Riders lock and unlock bikes in a designated service area using a smartphone app. This allows for bikes to be parked anywhere within the designated service area. Service area boundaries are enforced using GPS and on-street monitoring.

 

What were the 2018-2019 dockless bike share pilots?

Starting in July 2018, NYC DOT launched a dockless bike share pilot in July 2018 with three service areas: the Rockaways in Queens, the Fordham neighborhood in the Bronx, and the North Shore of Staten Island. The small-scale pilots evaluated the business and service models available in New York City. Over the course of the pilot, NYC DOT evaluated:

  • business models
  • usage
  • equipment safety and reliability, and
  • maintenance and operations

Four operators participated in the pilot: Pace, Citi Bike, Lime, and Jump. Pace and Lime operated in the Rockaways, Citi Bike and Jump in the Bronx, and Jump and Lime on Staten Island.

 

What is the 2020 dockless project?

While the 2018-2019 pilot analyzed many aspects of dockless bike share, NYC DOT did not evaluate the transportation function of dockless bike share, nor the impact of dockless bike share at a large scale. NYC DOT released a Request for Expressions of Interest (PDF) in April 2019, seeking responses from bike share companies to be a part of a larger, borough-wide dockless bile share project on Staten Island. NYC DOT selected Beryl as the new operator of bike share on Staten Island.

 

What is Beryl?

Beryl is a United Kingdom-based dockless bike share operator. They currently operate five programs in England: Bournemouth & Poole, London, Hereford, Watford, and Norwich. The programs have over 2,000 bikes on the ground and a total of 120,000 rides and 200,000 miles ridden to date.

No taxpayer monies are used to operate the Beryl system.

 

Who will run Beryl bike share?

Beryl will be responsible for day to day operations and maintenance of the bikes. NYC DOT is responsible for planning, outreach, and oversight of the program.