The free half hour of use for the YouBikes came to an end in Taipei today. The first half hour is now NT$5. It was previously free for 3o minutes and then NT$10 for the second half hour. The city changed the pricing scheme because most YouBike users only rode the bikes for less than 30 minutes, which cost the city millions in annual revenue.
The new pricing structure will still increase incrementally depending on the amount of time a user keeps a YouBike. The structure is as follows: NT$10 per half hour for the three and a half hours following the initial half-hour charge, NT$20 per half hour for the next four hours, and NT$40 per half hour after that.
On the first day of the new pricing scheme, the city saw better-than-expected results. From 6:00 to 12:00, the number of rides on the YouBikes totaled 17,338, compared with 21,553 for the same time period yesterday. The city expected usage to fall to 70% of previous usage numbers.
Taipei will continue to monitor YouBike usage and consider amending its fee structure in future. New Taipei will maintain the free half-hour policy.
Update: According to Yam News, the number of YouBike rides from 6:00 to 18:00 yesterday totaled 40,637, compared to 52,137 for the same 12-hour period on Tuesday. There was no significant change in usage in New Taipei.
Source: The Central News Agency