Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Nextbike

Recently in Munich, I came across "nextbike". Nextbike is a low-tech bike-sharing technology hybrid of Copenhagen's second generation Bycyklen and Munich's other bike-sharing technology, Call a Bike. Munich is also the first city I'm aware of which has two bike-sharing services.

To use a nextbike, an individual must register for the service on nextbike's website for free. To use the bike, one must call a toll-free number and provide the bike number to receive the bike's cable lock access code. The phone number must be called again notifying the company that the bike is being returned. I imagine the cable lock has a rotating access code.

The cost of nextbike is 1 Euro per hour and 5 Euro per day. However, should you not return the nextbike to the location in which you picked it up, there is an additional cost of 1 Euro per kilometer from where one started. According to the website, nextbike is available in 10 German cities.

I didn't have the opportunity to ride a nextbike while in Munich, however, it looked like a good service. The ads did seem rather large and the hourly pricing does seem rather expensive compared to the free first 30 minutes other bike-sharing services offer. In addition, trips are not always circular, so the charge of 1 Euro per kilometer seems unfair to the user.

photo credit: Paul DeMaio

5 comments:

Dave said...

The access system sounds similar to the DB Call-A-Bike service in Munich. Does it compete or replace it?

Paul DeMaio said...

Nextbike is a competing system to Call a Bike. I don't know the financials, however, I've heard one is mainly a transport service while the other is mainly an advertising service.

Mairi said...

Munich is not listed on Next Bike's website as a location, are you sure it is there? Or maybe it is no longer there?

Paul DeMaio said...

They used to be in Munich, but at the present date aren't there.

KDN said...

I'm looking at a nextbike right no un Munich...