Moscow Lifehack: How Do I Use Moscow City Bikes?
Need to make a quick getaway, fancy an ad hoc summertime bike ride along the embankment or simply looking for an affordable way of entertaining yourself this month? Velobike could be for you.
A citywide bike rental system that runs along the same lines as bike rentals in cities across the world, Velobike has 300 pick-up and drop-off points across the city. If your Russian language skills are a little shaky, here's the rundown.
First, head to velobike.ru where you can register yourself as a user and create an account using your name, telephone, email and bank details. You then receive a login and pin code via SMS or email.
Then the fun starts. Scout out your nearest Velobike station via the website's interactive map or the mobile app, and login to the machine using your registration details or troika transport card. Enter the number of the bike you would like to use and then take it from the bike stand before the 20-second grace period ends and it's "locked" back in.
You either "pay as you go" or pay a tariff per day (150 rubles), month (600 rubles) or season (1,200 rubles). The first 30 minutes are free, so, theoretically, you could ride around Moscow all day without spending any money as long as you dock the bike every half hour.
Once you're finished cycling around town, dock your bike and press "OK" on the panel. You should then receive an SMS confirming that your journey has ended. Make sure you receive that message! If the bike has not been returned correctly, a hefty fee will be charged to your card. It's as simple as that.