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During my last vacation in Barcelona I found out that some bicycle stations are made for citizens, where they can pick up a bike, ride on it to the other station, and leave it there. Unfortunately, this was not available for guests of the city.
Are there any cities in Europe I can pick up bicycle for my needs for a short time?

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Check Bicycles stackexchange: bicycles.stackexchange.com/questions/167/… –  mouviciel Jun 29 '11 at 13:14
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You can also find information on jcdecaux.co.uk/development/cycles –  Dean Jul 6 '11 at 20:52
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While not in Europe, Montreal has city-wide bike rentals as well. –  Jonas Jan 12 '13 at 17:08
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24 Answers

The Bike Rental in London supports casual hire, which is aimed at tourists.
You can buy either online, or using a credit/debit card at the docking station. The casual hire page even has a handy set of instructions in photo gallery form!

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In German cities you can use "Call a Bike" from the Deutsche Bahn. You need only a credit card to open the lock of the bike. You can drive wherever you want and leave it wherever you want. There are a iPhone and Android-App, too. More details at: http://www.callabike-interaktiv.de/index.php?id=401& (unfortunately only in German, but maybe you'll find an english website).

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That's not a problem, I can read German. Thank you. –  VMAtm Jun 23 '11 at 16:57
    
Münster has a lot of places you can rent a bike: muenster.de/stadt/tourismus/radverleih.html –  pyvi Aug 4 '11 at 13:02
    
Also check nextbike for cities in Germany and neighbor countries. –  back2dos Nov 9 '11 at 17:20
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Copenhagen has "city bikes" available for use by anybody. You can pick them up from one of the bike racks scattered across town, insert a 20DKK coin as a deposit, and off you go. You get the 20DKK back when you return the bike to a bike stand.

Copenhagen city bike website

The only negative thing I found when using them was that they were very popular and thus quite hard to come by.

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In Brussels, there's a network of 2500 bicycles available spread over 180 stations, run by Villo.

You can buy day-tickets for 1,5 euro, week-tickets for 7 euro, or a year-subscription for 30 euro.

Further there's a similar rule like in Paris, you have to bring the bike back every 30 minutes, or you pay extra.

You can pay at every station using a bank card.

There's even a mobile app with which you can easily find the nearest station.

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Dublinbikes offers a 3 Day Ticket for EUR 2. The first half-hour is free, you should pay a small amount if you use the bike longer. You should also know that:

On subscription, you also authorise the provider to request a €150 guarantee from your account.This amount will not be debited unless the bike is not returned after a period of 24 hours.

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In Paris, all you need is a credit card (Visa, Mastercard, Amex, Blue Visa). It will charge you 1.70€ for the entire day, provided you return the bicycle every 30 minutes. Renting it for 30-60 minutes will set you back €1, but be aware that longer rental periods can be a bit expensive. You only need to drop the bike back for 2 minutes before you can take it out again, so just take pauses whenever you pass a docking station!

It's not possible to pay with coins, you must pay with a credit or debit card. As a casual user, the bike deposit will be reserved on your card that day (about €150), which gets returned when you return the bike back.

Note that many other cities in France have a system working similarly (same provider: JCDecaux Cyclocity), with prices in the same range: Lyon, Marseille, Nantes, Toulouse, ...

Bordeaux, Grenoble, Marseille and a lot of other cities use competing systems. Nice also has a system but it is not as user-friendly for tourists (calling a number and giving your credit card number... - but there is also a web interface available).

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Just to add something about what Spredzy said, it exists in Lille as well now. –  Josay Jan 10 '12 at 12:57
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In the Netherlands you can rent a bicycle at almost any railway station for €6,50 per day. They require a deposit. Depending on the model the deposit ranges between €50 - 145.

Credit card use in the Netherlands is not that common, so often you need to bring cash to rent a bike.
On this site you can find the station and the telephone number.

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You can also rent ov-fiets (public transport bikes) at stations. You need a subscription (in Dutch) that costs 10 euro. Renting a bike cost 3 euro per day, a scooter costs 15 euro per day. –  DiggyF Feb 24 '12 at 21:28
    
You do need a Dutch bank account to pay for the ov-fiets. –  DiggyF Feb 24 '12 at 21:36
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In Oslo, Norway, tourists can rent a bike at the Tourist Information Center(s). The price is NOK 80/day, which is about $15 USD.

More info can also be found on this page.

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In Ljubljana, Slovenia, they implemented bike service last month. You use it with smart card, which can be purchased at newsstands or special machines located at bus stations. After you buy the card, you have to register via internet (you need credit card). It's free if you check in your bike at a station after an hour. Here it is, explained into details: http://en.bicikelj.si/

Also, an Android app with map of stations and counter of free bicycles and slots.

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In Lyon there is such a service (Vélo'v). You will be able to get a short-term card but only if your payment card comes with a chip. If it only has a magnetic band you cannot buy the card.

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There is a system in Wrocław, Poland. There are 31 stations in the city. First 20 minutes is free, but you need to register first at http://www.nextbike.pl/ where you need to make a small (1 PLN) bank transfer to authorize yourself, and then you also need a mobile phone or a paypass debit/credit card to unlock the bike.

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Stockholm has rentals run by citybikes.

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We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Don't just give a one-line answer; explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Answers that don't include explanations may be removed.

Many cities in Denmark offer free bikes with only a 20 DKK (3-4 US$) deposit.

This include:

Also a similar, but non-free, service is offered in Odense (Danish link).

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Gothenburg (Sweden) has 50 bicycle stations spread through the center which are perfect for tourists. You can get a seasonal (250 SEK) or 3-day ticket (10 SEK). You can even grab a bike for 30 minutes without paying anything. The bikes are removed during winter time (October 31st - April 1st). The city itself has many bike lanes which make it a nice place to bike. (But when I compare it to The Netherlands, my home country, it has some points of improvement.)

Sources: Short summary here and Official website

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We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Don't just give a one-line answer; explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Answers that don't include explanations may be removed.

Milan (Italy) has bikeMi. Most of the interesting parts of the city are covered with stations.

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I have some additional information about Liechtenstein. I'll also add hints how to get from the shop to the capital, since there are the most sights. In Liechtenstein, there are four different bike shops that also rent bikes. These shops are:

Sigi's Veloshop

A small shop in Balzers, right in the South of Liechtenstein. It is approximately 10 kilometers away from the capital, Vaduz. From Balzers to Vaduz there are some signed bike ways that are really beautiful. It is also possible to do a small mountain bike tour in Balzers. On this tour you will also visit Switzerland. The shop owner is also very kind and you can test you bike before you have to rent it.

Martin's Fahrradshop

I don't know a lot about this shop, but it is located in Mauren, which is in the northern part of Liechtenstein. But also from there it is not more than 8 or 9 kilometres to the center of Liechtenstein.

Bike Garage

This is a really well established bike shop that is directly in the village next to Vaduz, so you will be able to easily cycle to the main sights. The shop has a very good reputation and particularly offers mountain bikes.

Adolf's Bike Shop

Adolf's Bike shop is located in Triesenberg, a village in the mountains of Liechtenstein. As Bike Garage this shop is particularly interesting if you're looking for a mountain bike. Be aware that this shop is in the mountains, and therefore if you will cycle directly from the shop you won't find a flat area. You either have to go down- or uphill biking.

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In Turin, Italy, there is [TO]BIKE, which offers rental of bicycles in various places in the city.
You can buy a weekly or a daily subscription, take the bike at any bike station in the city (there 116 of them around Turin) and left it in every station (you don't have to take it back to the starting station).

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Vienna has a substantial and well-used system with a dense presence in the city center, as well as an extensive system of well-marked and well maintained bike trails (on the sidewalks!).

Unfortunately, the system itself is a bit awkward to use compared with the modern Bixi system deployed in London, Montreal, and Boston (and soon, New York City).

To use a Citybike, you need a bankomat (ATM) card. With that card you register at the machine. Then you can rent a bike with your card at any of the stations in the city. You return your bike at any of the stations. It is free for the first hour, and next hour costs 1 €. Registration is also 1 €.

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Batumi, on the Black Sea coast in Georgia, has a bike rental system that's available for casual hire called BatumVelo.

BatumVelo

There are references to it on the Batumi Wikipedia page and the Batumi Wikitravel page.

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It's a bit tricky to work out. The stations claim to accept credit cards, which also requires a phone number, but we could never get this to work. Some stations seemed not to have control panels that just didn't work. At the tourist information we were told we needed to buy a special card for 20 GEL (about 10 EUR) but we thought that was too expensive for the short bit of riding we actually wanted to do. All the bikes did seem to be in very good condition though and we saw other people using them. –  hippietrail Jun 27 '12 at 3:59
    
Darn. Have to admit I didn't try them myself, but I did indeed see others using the bikes and my hosts suggested I should try to use them as well. Still, if I remember correctly, the machines only took visa, no MasterCard. –  MastaBaba Jun 27 '12 at 5:37
    
Yes we tried several times with a US friend's Visa card and my local Georgian mobile phone number, at two separate bike stations - the one at one end near the port and the one near the musical fountain and tourist information box on the Boulevard. Too bad because 75 tetri per 15 minutes is cheap enough to say walk all the way to the far end of the Boulevard and take a bike back again. –  hippietrail Jun 27 '12 at 6:37
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Kraków, Poland has a bike rental system called BikeOne. You need to register at the website before you can rent your first bike.

Apart of that there are several private bike rental agencies, mostly in the city center.

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The city of Cascais, in Portugal has one place to rent them. You only need a citizen Id-card and it's almost free, but the bikes are not too good :). You can use them for one day (from 9 am to 5:30 pm).

Cascais site in Portuguese only, sorry.

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  • Aveiro in Portugal has a public bike system. It´s called BUGA. It was the first portuguese city having such a system. You can check more information here.

  • In Palma de Mallorca, Balearic Islands, Spain you also have bikes. More information here.

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In Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (part of Europe politically), there is biciambiental, which seems to be funded by tax money. You can rent bikes for free for up to three hours, after registering by SMS. There are various stations in the city.

In March 2013 I preregistered online, then received a PDF that I printed and signed. With the printout, I went to the office responsible for the area where I live, signed another paper, and finally got the password for renting bikes by SMS.

What I had to specify as a non-resident:

  • Name

  • Phone number (used that of my local mobile)

  • Birthday

  • Occupation (probably for statistics)

  • Passport number

  • Home address (Germany)

  • Local address (apartment that I rented in Las Palmas)

For more information read the FAQ.

Bike rental at Torre Woermann

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In Barcelona you can rent the Bicing or private companies.

https://www.bicing.cat/

And here you can find the private ones: http://dicasdomundo.com.br/c/barcelona-bicicleta-13.html

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bicing is the official system, and thus the system that the author of the questions refers to. As mentioned in the question, and also to my knowledge from visiting Barcelona, that system is not available to tourists. Please correct me if I'm wrong. –  feklee Mar 6 '13 at 18:42
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protected by Mark Mayo Mar 6 '13 at 9:30

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