Boris Bikes - Should I use one?

Matthew_T

"Young and Ex-whippet"
There is a possibility that I am going to be staying over in London for 2 nights. 1 with an event with Red Cross and another with my family.
The red cross event is over 2 days and I would be staying over for the end of the seond day as my family will be coming down on the 3rd morning.

To make it simple: The red cross event is on Thursday and Friday. My family are coming down on Saturday.
I will most likely have Friday night and Saturday morning to just roam the streets of London and get myself something to eat.

My question it this: Is it worth purchasing a boris bike for a little while and exploring the city? Also, would any riders on here commute around the St Pauls Cathedral area?
 

HovR

Über Member
Location
Plymouth
Why not? The rates were pretty cheap last time I used one.

They're good fun, just make sure you pick one with good brakes and pumped up tires before releasing it from the stands with your code! Don't forget your credit/debit card though, as it's the only way to pay.
 

deptfordmarmoset

Full time tea drinker
Location
Armonmy Way
As I live and ride in London I've never used a BB - I'm always already on a bike when I pass them - but I would say go for it. They're not expensive and a bike plus maps of some sort are the best way of getting around London. And with a BB if you want to linger a while somewhere or other, you can simply find a bike bay and return the bike.

I've not commuted around St Pauls for years but I have ridden all the roads at some point. What did you want to know about the area?
 

Broadside

Guru
Location
Fleet, Hants
The cheapest way to do it is to register for the day (£1) and then use the bike for under 30 mins and return it to a docking point, that way you will pay no extra charges. You can keep taking bikes out all day for no extra charge just make sure you dock it back in under 30 mins each time. They are a brilliant way to explore the city and you see so much more than on the tube and they are quicker than a bus.

I always use the Barclays bikes when I am in London I think they are great. Amazingly heavy and you won't break any speed records on them but they are great.
 
OP
Matthew_T

Matthew_T

"Young and Ex-whippet"
What did you want to know about the area?
Nothing at all. I know that I am going to be staying basically at St Pauls Cathedral and that is it. My transport for the Red Cross event is going to be paid for so I suspect it will be the bus (or taxi). My best bet would be to get a map and have an explore of the main attractions.

Just as dmoran said, my best bet would probably be to use it for under 30 mins each time.

Sorry Mister P, I dont have an iphone and the internet on my phone takes up a lot of my credit so I would probably plan my route before hand and just make sure that there was a bike where I was going.
 

HovR

Über Member
Location
Plymouth
Just as dmoran said, my best bet would probably be to use it for under 30 mins each time.
If I remember rightly I paid something like a £1 service fee, which allows you to use the service for 24 hours. On top of this you pay the hourly rental charge (30 minutes free, £1 for an hour) - So if you don't want to keep on re-docking every half an hour it's still much cheaper than public transport.
 
OP
Matthew_T

Matthew_T

"Young and Ex-whippet"
If I remember rightly I paid something like a £1 service fee, which allows you to use the service for 24 hours. On top of this you pay the hourly rental charge (30 minutes free, £1 for an hour) - So if you don't want to keep on re-docking every half an hour it's still much cheaper than public transport.
Yes that is a possibility. Depends how long I am out for.

Another possibility is that I take my bike down if the Red Cross are purchasing me a train ticket. The problem then however is how do I get the bike home? Using the bike rack on the car from London to North Wales just isnt conjusive.
 

snorri

Legendary Member
Although I have cycled through London several times when on tour I have never tried the BBs when staying over a few days. I find that not knowing the place intimately, I have to concentrate on the cycling and cannot let my attention wander to any sights along the way.
For me, walking is best for sightseeing, but the BBs could be handy for travelling to some specific place. :smile:
 

subaqua

What’s the point
Location
Leytonstone
Yes that is a possibility. Depends how long I am out for.

Another possibility is that I take my bike down if the Red Cross are purchasing me a train ticket. The problem then however is how do I get the bike home? Using the bike rack on the car from London to North Wales just isnt conjusive.

really? I regularly do the trip the other way. take the train to chester from London on a Friday night with one of the bikes and then on sunday travel back to London in the car with the wife and kids.

it all depends on how much you are going to be using the boris bike . they are designed for londons roads, and have chunkier tyres than a road bike.
 
OP
Matthew_T

Matthew_T

"Young and Ex-whippet"
really? I regularly do the trip the other way. take the train to chester from London on a Friday night with one of the bikes and then on sunday travel back to London in the car with the wife and kids.
It would just take too long, and then there is the question of security overnight and when going into shops. I think hiring a BB would cover my needs a I will only be using it for a short time.
 

mattobrien

Guru
Location
Sunny Suffolk
I do cycle round London when I need to, but it might be worthwhile considering walking. London isn't actually that big and most of it can be walked fairly easily. I would possibly suggest walking over cycling if you are less familiar with where you are going, plus you can spend more time looking around you rather than concentrating on the roads / traffic etc.

You could walk from St Paul's to Covent Garden in around 25 minutes and see the sights on the way.

Alternatively fill yer boots and cycle around the whole of it. You can get from one end to the other in 30 minutes (if you really they)
 
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