CitiBike: Bike Rental NYC Locations Announced & Other NYC Bike Rental Ideas

A Citibike bicycle in NYC from the bike share program.

The big news in bike riding last week: the NYC Bike Share program–set to launch in July and now officially called CitiBike–released the initial map of their bike "dock" locations… and there are MILLIONS of them! Well, not really millions… but there are an amazing number of docks, smartly situated near all major (and less-major) mass-transit hubs, where you can pick up or drop off your NYC Bike Share bicycle. Really: just look at all those blue dots! More than 9,500 docking spaces in Manhattan below 59th Street alone! And the Upper East Side, the Upper West Side, and South Brooklyn maps are coming soon. The DOT is obviously dead serious about making the CitiBike program a success, about making riding a bike an integral part of the NYC transportation system, especially for commuting (Bike Share to and from work, or take the express train and THEN Bike Share to work, or just Bike Share home, etc.) but really, anytime you need to get from here to there without taking a cab, a bus, a train. This will be the largest Bike Share program in the world, and it will change the way the city functions. Very impressive. Very exciting. 

Map of bike share rental stations in New York City.

The CitiBike share program is designed–and, so, priced–with short trips in mind. We won't go into all the details here, but, basically, you pay a membership fee ($95 a year; or $25 a week if you want to check it out), then get to use any CitiBike for free for up to 45 (if you're annual member) minutes (weekly and daily members get 30 minutes for free). So for errands, commutes, and your basic daily, getting-around-town transportation, you're set. Use your CitiBike for longer than 45 minutes without docking (and waiting "for a couple of minutes" before you can take out another for free) however, and the price adds up in a hurry: a four-hour ride, for example, will set you back $54, and that's if you're an annual member! Still, for the vast majority of your bike transportation needs or desires, CitiBike seems like it'll be cheap and convenient. In fact, even if you already own a bike, CitiBike might be a good deal! Just use CitiBike for quick trips or your commute, and your personal bike for when you really want to go for a ride.

Bikers in Manhattan's Central Park with CitiBike rentals.

Now, if you don't own a bicycle, but CitiBike isn't for you (for instance, you don't want to ride a 42-pound "tank"), there are still plenty of bike-rental options around town. For instance: the Central Park Bike Rental and Touring Company. Located on 57th Street and Ninth Avenue, a couple of blocks from Glenwood's luxury Upper West Side rental apartment building The Regent, Bike Rental Central Park not only offers good bikes at reasonable rates–$18 for three hours… take THAT CitiBike!–they also offer a number of interesting-sounding tours, including a Harlem Tour and bike-across-the-bridge Brooklyn Tour. And if you have little kids, there are tandems for rent, too. 

CitiBike Share and Central Park Bike Rental Details 

CitiBike share is set to begin in July. Lots and lots details about CitiBike docking locations and CitiBike prices can be found here. To find out more about Central Park Bike Rental, click here.

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