Photo by PoPville flickr user fromcaliw/love
Don’t wait around too much longer. Thanks to a reader for sending a reminder to sign up now because “the $50 annual fee will go up to $75 after Oct 31st.”
I noticed you had mentioned Capital Bikeshare once or twice, but I wanted to share a very positive experience using it and also to remind people that the $50 annual fee will go up to $75 after Oct 31st. This is a great time to sign up.
I used to walk a mile to the metro everyday, but now I take 20 minutes off my total commute time by taking Capital Bikeshare between 16th/Harvard and the Woodley Park metro. While there are times when bikes are not available, they seem to be very good about reshuffling bikes so my stations don’t go very long without bikes or spaces. This website is definitely the best resource for keeping up with bike distribution: http://oobrien.com/vis/bikes/?city=washingtondc Additionally the Spotcycle app for smartphones is very helpful.
In addition to commuting to the metro, I’ve taken the bikes around the city for errands and it is super easy and, dare-I-say, fun.
The first 30 minutes are free, and then the price goes up every 30 minutes. I’ve never gone over 30 minutes on any ride, but if you find yourself taking a trip across the city, you can stop at a bikeshare station and dock the bike and take it back out again to start a new 30 minutes.
The bikes are nothing fancy and don’t go very fast, but I find that to be best for cycling around the city. They do come equipped with three gears, a flashing light that comes on at night, and a bungee-corded holder on the front for jackets or small bags. I like how sturdy the bikes are because I don’t feel like I’m going to go flying if I accidentally bike over a pothole.
There is also a station near the back entrance of the zoo – on Rock Creek Trail – which makes for easy bike rides to Georgetown (where there is another bike station right off Rock Creek Trail).
Currently there are around 650 bikes in circulation, but I read that they’re planning to up the numbers to 1100 once they put in all the stations. I noticed on Saturday and Sunday that over 100 of the 650 bikes were being used during the day. That is pretty awesome for such a new program!
I own a bike, but it can be very inconvenient and unsafe to use it for short distance biking.
I’m interested to hear what other people think about the program – it has totally changed how I get around the city.”