New York Bike Rental | Citibike Share

Is the New York Bike Rental Program Good for Tourists?

New York City is increasingly becoming a bike-friendly city and new bike lanes are popping up everywhere.  But if you don’t own a bicycle how can you take advantage of this pleasurable mode of transportation?  Citibank, in collaboration with New York City has created a bike share program.  We are happy to tell you about it.

The New York bike rental program offers 3 membership options:

  • New York Bike Rental | Citibikea one day membership is $9.95 plus tax
  • a weekly membership is $25 plus tax
  • a yearly membership is $95 plus tax

Members are allowed an unlimited number of 30 minute rides.  The 30 minute time limit per ride exists because the program encourages people to use bicycles for short local trips such as commuting or running errands. However, you can take as many 30 minute rides as you would like during your membership period. Bikes are available in Manhattan and Brooklyn. To find a dock near you, visit the Citibike Dock Location map.

Here is how it works:

Let’s say you want to bike from one neighborhood to another.  You go to the nearest bike dock and pick up a bike. You then have 30 minutes to complete your trip and return the bike to any dock location. You do not need to return the bike from where you picked it up.  During your membership period, you can take an unlimited amount of 30-minute rides. 

Here is the catch.

If you go over the 30 minutes, you will be charged an additional fee per half-hour.  Overtime fees are $4 for the first ½ hour beyond your initial 30 minutes, then $13 for the second ½ hour, and then every ½ hour after that, you will be charged $12.00.  What this means is – get your bike back to a dock in 30 minutes! Once docked, the time counter on a bike resets. Allow at least 2 minutes for the docking system to process your return and you can take a bike out for another 30 minutes. And so on….

What if the dock is full when I return my bike?

If you arrive at a dock and there are no spots available to re-dock, you get a 15 minute grace period to return the bike to a different dock. However, you MUST check in at the fully occupied dock before heading to another dock with available spaces.  You will be directed to the nearest dock that has spots. Also, bikes are equipped with GPS to help you locate docks.  

If you are a tourist and want of enjoy the New York bike share program, it can be done!

As long as you check in at a dock every 30 minutes, you will not be charged any overtime fee.  Wait at least 2 minutes for your return to be processed and then you can take out a bike for another 30 minutes. And so on and so on.

Some tips:

  • Dock it or lock it!  If you stop during your rental period, and the bike ‘disappears’ it will cost you $1000!
  • Plan your trip in advance to not waste any of your 30 minutes of biking time. Check out the official NYC bike map and plan your route online. 
  • If you have a smartphone, you can download the Citibike App.
  • Safety always! It is advisable to wear a helmet at all times. 

Taking one of our bike tours?

You can rent a bike through our reservation system or rent a bike from a rental business instead. Here’s a list of  NYC bike rental options.