How Do People Use Bike Share?

One question we get all the time is how do people use bike share? Do they commute? Are they using the bikes for fun? So in honor of National Bike Month we dug into the numbers from customer surveys across three of our largest systems, Citi Bike, Divvy and Capital Bikeshare. This is what we found.

Bike share is a vital part of urban transportation networks, providing a new commuting option, complementing and, in some cases, supplementing transit.

  • People use bike share to get to work:
    • 65% of CaBi members, 50% of Citi Bike members and 42% of Divvy members reported this was a primary way they use bike share.
    • Personal appointments and social engagements are the second biggest reason that people report using bike share.
  • Bike share provides an important connection to transit:
    • Seven in ten (71%) respondents used Capital Bikeshare at least occasionally to access a bus, Metrorail, or commuter rail; 18% used bikeshare six or more times per month for this purpose.
    • 25% of Citi Bike members report using Citi Bike in conjunction with another form of transit often. 54% report doing so at least occasionally.
    • 36% of Divvy members report using Divvy to get to another form of transit often. Over 75% of Divvy members report doing so at least occasionally.
  • Bike share also helps supplement the urban transportation network, enabling trips not well-served by other forms of transit.
    • About one third of Divvy members say they use Divvy to take trips they would not have made before.
  • Bike share is helping people save money!
    • On average, each Capital Bikeshare member saved $631 per year on personal travel cost.
    • On average each Divvy member saved $754 per year on personal travel cost.
    • On average each Citi Bike member saved $814 per year on personal travel cost.

According to the National Association of City Transportation Officials there were over 28 million U.S. bike share trips taken in 2016, a 25% increase over the prior year. Four of Motivate’s systems were responsible for nearly 80% of those.

All told, riders on Motivate systems took nearly 24 million trips in 2016, averaging 65,753 trips per day and racking up well over 50M miles. For comparison, the busiest railroad in North America, the Amtrak Northeast Corridor, saw about half as many trips in FY 2016.

We hope to see many of you out there on the streets this Bike Month and beyond!