AFTER three months of providing the bicycle-sharing facility to the public at a nominal rental of Rs 2/hour, one of the two service providers has hiked the hourly fare. PEDL, , is now charging Rs 6 for renting a bicycle for an hour.
Officials with PEDL said the initial rental was an ‘introductory price’ to get residents used to the service and it was always made clear that the fare would be increased in future.
The bicycle-sharing scheme was launched by the Pune Municipal Corporation in December 2017, with the help of two private firms — namely PEDL and OFO.
At present, there are over 1,500 bicycles that have been deployed at several locations, including Aundh-Baner, which is under the Smart City Mission and other areas in the heart of the city such as J M Road, F C Road and Law College Road.
PEDL has increased the rental charge since last week.
Vice-president, operations and growth, said the decision has nothing to do with the ‘vandalism’ or any other factor.
“It was supposed to be increased.
The Re 1 for 30 minutes was an introductory charge.
In fact, the rate that was discussed with the PMC is Rs 10 for 30 minutes.
The decision to keep the current rate or increase will depend on the usage and how people take to it.
They will start subscription programmes where people who use it frequently will get some rebate.
Users of the service have expressed disappointment over the change in rental.
“Since the rental has been increased, people have become a little reluctant to use the bicycles.
Despite the increase in the rental, there has been no visible improvement in the service.
The cycle count remains the same as it was two months ago.”