Taipei Mulls Return of Free Half Hour for YouBike Riders

Taipei YouBike

To encourage more people to commute to work by bike, the Taipei Department of Transportation (DOT) is seeking ways to attract more YouBike riders during rush hours.

Taipei DOT Director Chang Che-yang (張哲揚) said during a city council meeting today that while the city should provide the free first half hour for YouBike riders, no plan has been made yet, particularly as to whether the free period should be open or limited, UDN reported. There is a possibility that the plan would only be implemented on Fridays to encourage commuters to ride bikes instead of driving or taking public transportation.

There is also a possibility of improving concessions when transferring between YouBikes, buses, and the MRT. However, to implement such a plan requires coordination between all the public transportation operators and EasyCard. A plan could be in place by the end of April.

Taipei ended the free half hour for YouBikes on April 1, 2015, as the city saw most riders only used the public bike share for less than a half hour at a time. However, after discontinuing the free time on the bikes, the city did not see a significant decline in ridership as it expanded the network. In New Taipei City, riders are still given a free half hour on YouBikes.

The first half hour charge in Taipei is NT$5, with an additional NT$10 per half hour after that in the next three and a half hours of use.

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