The free trial period for public bicycle rental at five sites in Taipei City’s Xinyi District (信義) will be extended to the end of this month to encourage the public to use public transportation, the Taipei City Government said yesterday.
Launched on March 11, the system uses 250 “YouBike” bicycles available for rental at the MRT Taipei City Hall Station, the east side of Taipei City Hall, Taipei World Trade Center Exhibition Hall 3, the Xinyi District Office and the sidewalk across from the Grand Hyatt Taipei hotel.
The trial period had been scheduled to end on Friday.
Taipei City Department of Transportation Commissioner Luo Shiaw-shyan (羅孝賢) said the scheme had attracted more than 9,500 people since it was launched.
The department has now extended the free trial period through April 30, Luo said.
Six more rental spots will be opened on Saturday at Taipei World Trade Center Exhibition Hall 1, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, New York New York Mall, Xinyi Junior High School and on Songren Road in Sanzhangli (三張犁), he said.
Starting on May 1, the fee will be NT$40 for the first 30 minutes and NT$10 for every additional 15 minutes, the department said.
Users can pay with their EasyCard or a credit card, which includes a NT$3,000 deposit.
The deposit will be forfeited if the bike is not returned within 24 hours, Luo said.
The system was established to encourage the use of bicycles as transit tools between MRT stations, Luo said, adding that the department would expand the system to major MRT stations including Gongguan, Yuanshan and Jiantan, and around top tourist attractions such as the Shilin Night Market.
More information about the bicycle rental service is available at www.youbike.com.tw or by visiting the YouBike Operation Center in front of Exit 3 of the MRT Taipei City Hall Station.