Barclays Cycle Hire will be available for non-members and members alike from Friday December 3rd, Transport for London has announced.
Currently only members have been able to use the 'Boris Bikes', which have been used for 1.6 million journeys since launch this summer. Now 'casual users' can use their Visa or MasterCard credit or debit card to use the bikes from their nearest docking station, following on-screen instructions to release the bike. Once the user has purchased their access period - for either 24 hours or seven days - the first 30 minutes of any journey will be free of usage charges.
The roll out for casual users was originally timed for September, but was delayed due to the scheme's unforeseen popularity, according to TfL.
The Bike Hub satnav and bike shop locating app has location data for all Boris Bike stands in London.
Security anti-skimming measures are set to be introduced at all Barclays Cycle Hire terminals, using industry leading software designed to stop anyone placing a skimming device on a terminal.
“It is fantastic that the Barclays Cycle Hire scheme has not only proved incredibly popular but the system has shown itself to be rigorous and robust,” commented Mayor of London Boris Johnson. “Now it has been thoroughly tried and tested by more than a hundred thousand members we are ready for the next stage where anyone who fancies taking to two wheels can do so in an instant with a simple swipe of their card."
TfL’s MD of Surface Transport David Brown said: “Barclays Cycle Hire is transforming the way we travel around the Capital. The scheme is terrifically good value; around 95 per cent of all journeys made by Barclays Cycle Hire members have been under 30 minutes, which means that the vast majority of people using the scheme aren’t paying any more than their 24 hour £1, seven day £5 or annual £45 access fees.”
Deanna Oppenheimer, Vice-Chair, Global Retail Banking, CEO Western Europe and CEO UK Retail Banking at Barclays, added: “Barclays Cycle Hire is transforming London. By opening the scheme to casual users ahead of Christmas we will see thousands more Londoners, tourists and visitors to the capital able to enjoy the benefits that it provides.”