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HomeParis TravelUtilizing the Vélib Bike Service in Paris ⋆ SECRETS OF PARIS

Utilizing the Vélib Bike Service in Paris ⋆ SECRETS OF PARIS

Now that the climate is (largely) conducive to getting round Paris by bicycle, I believed it could be a superb time to replace the details about utilizing the Metropolis of Paris’s municipal bike-share system often known as Vélib. It’s had a rocky few years after switching service suppliers, and whereas there are nonetheless a number of bugs to work out, I’ve discovered them to be fairly dependable for the informal bicycle owner. Whether or not you’ve used them earlier than or are a first-timer, listed below are a number of helpful tips about the bikes, the way to arrange an account, and the way to use them.

Most Essential Takeaways

  • Vélib has common bikes (inexperienced) and electric-assisted bikes (blue)
  • Join ALL passes (together with 24-hour or 3-day passes) on-line, NOT immediately on the bike station “bornes” (there have been points with individuals placing of their bank card information after which not receiving the account quantity or passcode to have the ability to take a look at the bikes).
  • There’s a FREE cross for residents that solely prices you if you happen to truly use a motorcycle (this “pay as you go” possibility is barely costlier, however nice for the occasional person who desires the choice to seize a motorcycle at any second with out fuss).

In regards to the Vélib Bikes

There are two sorts of Vélib:

  1. common bikes (inexperienced)
  2. electric-assisted bikes (blue). These nonetheless have to be pedaled to work, however they provide you slightly push, particularly going uphill, and may attain 25kph.

Each have baskets, mud guards, headlights, and locks for when it’s good to pop into a store shortly. In contrast to the various “dockless” bikes that you just would possibly see round Paris (though they’ve been virtually fully changed by electrical scooters now), the Vélibs are all docked bikes, with a number of hundred “stations” located all through Paris and the fast.

Subscription Choices and Passes (Up to date April 2022)

There are 2 “one-off” passes that anybody with a bank card can use, and three “subscription” choices which are for residents or long-term guests.

  1. The one-off passes for informal customers are the €3 Ticket-V (a single-use rental for as much as 45 minutes, both basic or electrical, plus €1 for every further half-hour on basic bikes or €2 for eBikes), the €5 Move 24-hour “Classique”, the €10 Move 24-hour “Electrique” and the €20 “Move 3 Jours“. All however the Ticket-V let you take as much as 5 bikes at a time with one account, so it’s good for small teams or a household who need to pay with one bank card. There are two charges to consider, the fastened “Move” price simply to enroll (charged immediately whether or not you ever use the bikes or not) and the precise rental price for the time you employ the bikes.  You get an account quantity and a PIN it’s good to maintain in the course of your cross to have the ability to take a motorcycle.  The rental price for the precise time used is similar for each passes: 
    • For the Move 24-hour “Classique”, inexperienced bikes are free for as much as half-hour. If you happen to don’t return your bike to a station after half-hour, your bank card can be charged €1 for every further half hour. You should utilize the bike as many occasions as you need with out paying greater than the cross price so long as you turn bikes each half-hour. If you wish to use a blue electrical bike with this cross, it should value €2 for every half-hour.
    • For the Move 24-hour “Electrique” and Move 3 Jours, blue electrical bikes are free for as much as 45 minutes for the primary 6 journeys (then €1 /journey after that) and €1 for every 30-minutes you go over. If you wish to use the inexperienced bikes with this cross it’s free for as much as 60 minutes per journey then €1 per half-hour (this would possibly come in useful since there are far fewer electrical bikes accessible, they’re tougher to search out, and typically those you discover aren’t completed recharging).     

      : This month an American visiting Paris confirmed {that a} €300 deposit was deducted from her bank card every time she renewed her 3-day cross, and solely reimbursed a day or two after it expired; so if you’re staying every week or extra and want a number of passes to make use of for the entire time, chances are you’ll want a card with room for having a number of deposits taken without delay earlier than getting the cash returned. I don’t know if all US playing cards do that, however you ought to be conscious it could occur.
  2. There are three totally different subscriptions which are for many who reside in Paris, tailored to the frequency of use. All three work with a bodily card that can be despatched to you (or added to your Navigo card):
    • “V-Libre” is a pay-as-you-go account for infrequent customers. It prices nothing to subscribe, however prices you €1 per half-hour for the inexperienced bikes and €3 per 45 minutes for the blue bikes. If you happen to by no means use the bikes, you aren’t charged something in any respect. I like to recommend everybody to get this even when they suppose they’ll by no means use the bikes, as a result of in a pinch you’ve received the cardboard to seize one and go.
    • “V-Plus” is a month-to-month (€3.10) or annual (€37.20) subscription for many who use the bikes greater than 4 occasions per thirty days. With this subscription you get half-hour without spending a dime on the inexperienced bikes, then €1 per further 30-minute rental, and €2 for the blue bike leases plus €2 for every further 30-minute rental.
    • “V-Max” is a set month-to-month (€8.30) or annual (€99.60) account for normal customers that features 60-minute rides on inexperienced bikes and a couple of free 45-minute rides on the blue bikes (then €1 per journey). After that, the extra occasions is €1 per half-hour for both bike. That is an superior deal if you wish to use the electrical bikes on daily basis of the 12 months for brief journeys (lower than 45 minutes every journey).      
Support Secrets of Paris

Getting Began

Earlier than you begin, you’ll must get an account (even for a Day Move) and – particularly if you happen to’re planning on utilizing it greater than as soon as – the smartphone app. For each (accessible in English), go to:

Upon getting registered on-line for the cross you might have chosen, you’ll instantly obtain an eight-digit subscription ID# and a PIN (the PIN is chosen by you). WRITE THESE DOWN (or retailer in your telephone), as you’ll want them to take a look at a motorcycle (for the month-to-month or annual cross holders, you’ll want these till your card arrives within the mail).

Common (inexperienced) and electrical (blue) bikes at a docking station (tip: don’t use that “borne” terminal on the appropriate). 

Test Out a Bike

Upon getting your ID# and PIN, you’ll be able to take a look at a motorcycle(s). You will discover accessible bikes utilizing the web site or the smartphone (up to date in real-time), though they’re fairly simple to identify round Paris (TIP: the bus shelter maps present the closest Vélib stations).

Do a fast examine to verify the bike you need isn’t damaged:

  • Each wheels have air
  • All components together with pedals, seat, and handlebars are intact
  • Spin the pedals backwards to verify chain isn’t blocked
  • Be sure the seat may be adjusted if wanted
  • If the seat is going through backwards, it means the final one that used it discovered a difficulty (so don’t examine this bike out!)

As soon as all seems to be good, you’ll be able to checkout the bike immediately on the bike’s electrical show unit often known as the “V-box” (DO NOT attempt to use the “borne” terminal to take a look at a motorcycle!). It’ll then ask on your eight-digit ID#, after which the four-digit PIN (push the inexperienced examine button after getting into the numbers). For many who have a bodily card, you simply wave this in entrance of the V-Field and it reads the data mechanically, so that you don’t must enter any numbers. If all is sweet, it should show “Go!” and you’ll take away your bike from the docking station and begin using.

Regulate the seat and ensure the brakes work earlier than you go flying down a hill into visitors. Et voila!

Observe: If there is a matter with the bike (ie an electrical bike not charged fully, or an everyday bike that hasn’t been returned appropriately) it gained’t let you test it out, simply strive one other bike. Generally complete stations are blocked (for instance, if it’s on a parade or protest march route that day).  

That is the “V-Field” on every bike. You checkout your bike proper right here, utilizing the inexperienced checkmark button.

Locking the Bike for a Short-term Pause

If you wish to pop into the bakery or in any other case depart your bike momentarily with out returning it to a station, you’ll be able to lock your Vélib in two methods (see this video to get a greater visible:

  • As soon as stopped, put down the kickstand and push the tip of the left handlebar to eject the cable lock cleverly hidden within the tip of the appropriate handlebar. You lock this into the little slot on the “neck” of the bike the place the handlebars meet the body. Then push the inexperienced checkmark and also you’ll see “Pause” displayed; you will have to verify this together with your card or enter your PIN. You’ll then see a padlock image to verify.
  • You may merely block the handlebars from transferring (a bit like whenever you lock your automotive’s steering wheel) with out utilizing the cable lock. Simply press the inexperienced checkmark and also you’ll see “Pause” displayed; you will have to verify this together with your card or enter your PIN. Flip the handlebars till you are feeling it block into locked place. You’ll then see a padlock image to verify.

To launch your bike once more, push the inexperienced examine button and use your card or enter your PIN once more to verify, and it’ll launch the cable and the locked steering, so that you’re able to proceed rolling.

Returning the Bike

Once you’re able to return your bike, simply discover the closest station (you will discover stations with open areas listed on the app and web site) and slide the entrance wheel again into the docking station slot. Maintain your eye on the V-Field show: it should present the time you used the bike then a “Cease” signal, after which the show will flip off. Give the bike slightly tug to verify it’s locked in there, you then’re good! You’ll obtain a affirmation electronic mail every time you come your bike.

If you wish to use it longer than the free time you might have in your cross (often half-hour) with out paying, merely cease at a station and plug it again in, verify it says “Cease” on the display screen, after which simply test it out once more (until the bike sucks, by which case you’ll need to seize a special bike).

Observe: Don’t overlook to show the seat round in case your bike isn’t working correctly to sign to different riders and the Vélib workers that it’s damaged.

IF YOU HAVE ANY ISSUES: name customer support (open 8am-10pm on weekdays, 9am-10pm Saturdays, and 9am-7pm Sundays and holidays): 01 76 49 12 34

Experience safely!

I do know none of you might be sporting helmets or yellow security vests, however a minimum of don’t overlook one rule: by no means trip between a big automobile (like a truck or bus) and the sidewalk simply earlier than an intersection, as a result of they might not see you when turning proper and also you’ll get squashed. Keep behind or cross on the left so the drivers can see you. I do know it’s no enjoyable sucking on exhaust fumes, however you’ll need to bear it till you will get to a much less congested space to trip or follow the separated bike paths throughout Paris.

* Be taught all about biking in Paris: Paris by Bike

Even in case you have precedence, make sure to look out for pedestrians (use that bell!) and electrical “trottinettes” (we name them scooters in English, however they aren’t the identical as motor scooters), that are in every single place in Paris now and sometimes pushed by individuals who don’t know what they’re doing (or the principles of the highway).

velib phone charger

PS: The “bornes” at every docking station are ineffective for getting your cross or trying out a motorcycle, however they DO serve one nice objective: charging your USB units! 

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