The Bottom Line
- Sturdy bikes, easy to ride
- Simple checkout at bike kiosks
- Basket handy for running errands
- Complex pricing system
- Must have credit or debit card
- Awkward kickstand
- Membership: Daily $5; weekly $20; monthly $30; yearly $65. Student and senior annual memberships are $45.
- Ride duration: Rides of 30 min. or less are no extra charge. Additional charges of $1.10 - $4.40 apply for 30 more min.
- Hours: B-cycle bikes will be available March 1 - November 30 each year. Hours are 5 a.m. - 11 p.m. seven days a week.
Guide Review - B-cycle Bike Share Review
The jaunty cruiser bikes are certainly fun to ride, with an adjustable seat and three speeds for flexibility. The attached basket and lock makes it convenient for running errands, while burning calories at the same time. The only tricky part was the double-pronged kickstand, which is similar to kickstands for scooters. Rolling the bike forward snapped the heavy kickstand into place, but don't actually try to kick the kickstand without some forward momentum.
The bikes are a little on the heavy side, and a few spandex-clad road bikers sneered as they zipped by on their lightweight bicycles. However, the B-cycle must be appealing enough to ride but not irresistible enough to steal. According to Brent Cruz Tongo, marketing and communications for the City & County of Denver, only one bike has been stolen to date out of around 35,000 rides. Riders are charged $1,000 on their credit cards if the bikes are gone for more than 72 hours.
Checking out the bike proved relatively straightforward, although the touch screen froze a few times. I swiped my credit card for a $5 daily membership, agreed to the user agreement, and entered my phone number. Then I selected the bike I wanted from the kiosk and rode off down the trail. Returning the bike proved simple as well. I just wheeled the bike into place into another kiosk and waiting for the green light to blink three times.
The only quibble with B-cycle is the complicated pricing structure. The B-cycle encourages rides of less than 30 minutes with the pricing, but it seems contrary to the spirit of exploring unknown territory if you have to keep checking your watch. Unlimited rides of less than 30 minutes are included with the membership, and then the program charges $1.10 to $4.40 per additional half hour. The daily maximum rate is $65, which is the same price as the annual membership. Additionally, riders must have credit or debit cards as cash is not accepted.
If you do give B-cycle a whirl and like it, the annual membership provides the most bike for your buck. Annual memberships are $65, with a $20 discount for students and seniors. Annual members receive a B-card in the mail that allows them to bypass the touch screen, and access the bicycles by swiping a card.