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14 Nov 2023

The ACT is urging any cycling retailers affected by technical issues being reported with the 'buy now, pay later' app Klarna to consider whether they may be better served by switching to an...

9 Nov 2023

Cytech has been named as the provider of Best Retailer Services in the 2023 BikeBiz Awards, recognising the positive impact of its service to the cycling industry. More than 25,000 Cytech...

2 Nov 2023

The Association of Cycle Traders (ACT) and the Bicycle Association (BA), the two cycle industry trade bodies in the UK, have issued a joint response to the initiative of the Electrical Safety...

2 Nov 2023

Cytech, the internationally recognised training and accreditation scheme for bicycle technicians, has relaunched its Cytech theory one online learning course delivering an introduction to...

30 Oct 2023

Colchester has introduced an electric bicycle scheme in a bid to encourage short journeys without relying on cars with pay-as-you-go electric cargo bikes now available to hire.

30 Oct 2023

A new academic study has concluded that riding a bike, rather than driving a car, is positively associated with “orientation towards the common good”.

30 Oct 2023

The government has confirmed it has no plans for cyclists to be subject to compulsory registration.

30 Oct 2023

A few years ago Charlotte Florence’s dream trip to Costa Rica quickly turned into a nightmare after a quad bike crash, leaving her paralysed face down in the jungle.

18 Oct 2023

Hubtiger, a leading cloud-based repair and rental management software, announces an expansion of its services with the release of a new feature: Long-Term Rentals.

17 Oct 2023

A survey of 1,038 work commuters (363 urban bike commuters and 675 non-biking commuters) in the US conducted by ebike.org  has explored if there’s a difference in the mindsets and...

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TfL cycle hire ridership at lowest in a decade

Posted on in Business News , Cycles News

Journeys made using Transport for London’s (TfL) cycle hire scheme this year are at their lowest in a decade, with the organisation blaming recent bad weather as a potential cause.

TFL hire bikes

Having achieved a record number of hires in 2022, the latest statistics show that the bikes’ usage has declined by a third in the first seven months of 2023, compared with those same months last year. While some 7,383,232 journeys were made from January to July 2022, just 4,976,813 hires have been recorded in the equivalent period this year – a drop of 33%.

It is the lowest number since January to July 2013, when 4,807,338 journeys were made, at a time when the network of docks and availability of bikes was smaller than today.

David Eddington, TfL’s head of cycle hire, said “a number of factors” were to blame, though he picked out the “consistent bad weather recently” as having had “a significant impact on casual hires”.

The year-on-year decline appears to have started in September 2022 – the same month that TfL increased the cost of an annual subscription to the scheme from £90 to £120.

There were reports at the time of a big drop-off in subscriptions, in part because the new charges meant that the “auto renewal” system could not operate, and riders had to manually reactivate their membership for another year.

The pricing for single journeys was also changed to become a flat rate of £1.65 per half-hour of use. The scheme previously charged riders £2 for a whole day of access to the bikes, so long as each journey lasted less than 30 minutes.

Commenting on the decline in usage, Eddington said: “Last year was a record year for the scheme and a number of factors have contributed to a lower number of hires this year, including the consistent bad weather recently, which has had a significant impact on casual hires.

“We will continue our work to make cycling more accessible than ever by continuing to open and extend cycleways across the capital and making further improvements to Santander Cycles, which could include increasing the number of e-bikes in the scheme.”

In June, TfL said it would “be exploring the possibility of adding concessionary fares” to its scheme “to support the most disadvantaged Londoners”, including job seekers and council house tenants.

Under its cycling action plan – which covers cycling in general across the capital – TfL wants to grow the number of daily bike journeys made in London to 1.6 million by 2030, up by a third from 1.2 million in 2022.

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