It is now very simple to rent a bike for a simple errand or take off on an exciting urban adventure in Philadelphia. Indego, the city's new bike share program, is open for riders. Perhaps you've noticed a few more cyclists on the streets or spotted one of the many new bike stations close to your favorite places. But how does the bike share work? How can you hop on a bike and make your way around Philly?
Step 1: Sign up and choose a membership
There are various memberships that will meet the needs of any cyclist. For city residents and visitors who will take multiple rides in a month, there are two plans that will save some money and offer quick access to a bicycle:
Alternatively, you can walk up to an Indego station and, with a quick swipe of a credit card, choose a bike and ride off. The cost: $4 per half hour. For those without a credit card, or who might not want to attach a card to a key fob, there are also cash memberships. Simply visit a local Family Dollar or 7-Eleven store after signing up online and follow some simple instructions.
Step 2: Decide where to start and check out a bike
With 60 stations in the city, choosing where to start your ride might be a challenge, but obtaining a bike will not. Once you arrive at a station, choose the bicycle you want to ride, press the button for that bike, and hold your key to the reader at the kiosk. Within a few seconds, you are ready to go. Each bicycle is equipped with baskets in both the front and rear to hold your backpack, computer bag, a few groceries or anything that you might need for your trip. With three gears, reflectors, lights that come on when you begin to pedal, and front and rear brakes, Philadelphia can be traveled day or night. An adjustable seat also means that Indego bikes are comfortable for most riders.
Step 3: Ride!
Whether you have a destination in mind or just want to experience the city on a whim, the Philadelphia area boasts 426 miles of on-street bike lanes, 104 miles of multi-use paths, and 45 miles of signed routes that make riding safer and easier. The Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia has updated city and regional bike maps available for download to help you on your journey.
When you're done with the bike, simply return it to the station closest to your destination. You've traveled in Philly inexpensively, you've gotten some exercise, and best of all you had fun riding a bicycle along the way. Safe and happy riding!