Pedaling ’round Paris
Vélib’ (pronounced vay-leeb) Bike Rentals – it’s a really brilliant idea Paris has implemented. They’ve put 20,000 bicycles into 1800 stations, all around the city. The bikes are available 24 hours a day and are free for trips of 30 minutes or less. A one-day ticket is only €1,70, or a little over $2. You can also purchase weekly or monthly passes.
You simply pick up a bike at any of the Vélib’ stations, then return it to a station farther down the road. You’re required to supply a credit card before checking it out and if you try any monkey business, it will sound an alarm.
Here’s what their website says:
- Go to terminal at a Vélib’ station
- Follow on-screen instructions
- Select a bike and enter bike number
- Wait for the green light and signal and take your bike
- The first 30 minutes of each trip are always free of charge. [ One blogger warns that if you have a credit card without an imbedded microchip, it probably won’t work. But, you CAN buy tickets on their website without that chip. ]
I’ve just downloaded their free iPhone app that shows all the locations. It’s nice to know that if I get tired of walking, I can hop on a bike and get home. I just hope French bikes come with extra large seats. I’ll need it after all those pâtisseries I plan to enjoy.