Citi Bike to hike prices for the second time in a year


The cost to ride a Citi Bike is going up for the second time in a year.

Lyft, which owns Citi Bike, announced on Thursday that the cost to rent a bike will rise by roughly 10% next month.

The annual price tag for Citi Bike members will increase from $185 to $205 on Jan. 29. Starting Jan. 5, nonmembers will pay $4.49 for a 30-minute single-use trip, up 50 cents from the current price.

Jordan Levine, a spokesperson for Lyft, attributed the price hikes to supply chain disruptions and soaring shipping costs, among other factors. He said the rough economic outlook will not impact plans to expand Citi Bike into more areas of Brooklyn and Queens.

The cost to rent an electric Citi Bike will also go up next month, from 15 cents to 17 cents per minute for members, and from 23 cents to 26 cents per minute for nonmembers. That increase reflects the growing costs of swapping batteries amid outsize demand for the bikes, according to Levine.

Lyft has recently moved to slash operating costs in the face of continued declines in stock value. Last month, Lyft laid off 13% of its staff, including employees overseeing Citi Bike.

But the increased prices could impact overall membership for Citi Bike, which saw a surge in usage during the pandemic. With the incoming increase, the cost of an annual membership — which offers free rides on standard bikes up to 40 minutes — has now more than doubled from $95 when the system launched in 2014. The price of single-use rides is up 50% since Lyft bought Citi Bike four years ago.

Lyft purchased the bike-share system in 2018. The ride-share giant hiked prices earlier this year, prompting criticism from city officials. A spokesperson for the Department of Transportation declined to comment on the latest increase.

Levine said Lyft is considering ways to offer lower prices to its most loyal members, including those who participate in the company’s Bike Angels program that extends the annual memberships of riders who return bikes to mostly empty stations.

The company’s reduced fare program, which provides low-cost membership to public housing residents and food stamp recipients, will remain at its current level of $5 per month.


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