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TRAVEL & LEISURE

Ride Is the New Dockless Electric Scooter Service Currently Trialling in Melbourne

The yellow scooters are currently being trialled in St Kilda, with hopes to expand across the CBD.
By Libby Curran
December 18, 2018
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Ride Is the New Dockless Electric Scooter Service Currently Trialling in Melbourne

The yellow scooters are currently being trialled in St Kilda, with hopes to expand across the CBD.
By Libby Curran
December 18, 2018
  shares

The dockless bike sharing phenomenon hasn't exactly proved a roaring success here in Australia, with rogue bikes clogging up footpaths, or winding up broken and abandoned in dangerous locations, and oBike withdrawing from Melbourne entirely.

And still, yet another company is keen to give the concept a whirl locally — this time, featuring electric scooters. Aussie start-up Ride has announced it has launched a trial program of its ride share service, giving locals in Melbourne the chance to road-test its fleet of electric scooters.

Riffing on the scooter systems that have been going gang-busters over in the USA, the local company is still nailing down its technology, launching the pilot program in St Kilda, before rolling out across CBD areas. At this stage, riders simply locate a scooter, scan and pay via the Ride smartphone app, before jetting off on their two-wheeled adventure.

The company held a short trial in the area last month, which, according to founder Aaron LaLux, was a success, so it decided to re-launch for the busy summer holiday period. "We've decided to re-launch for the holiday season to gift St Kilda with this new way of getting around and to help get cars off the road. It's my wish that it won't be long before we see more clean energy alternatives to the carbon emitting vehicles that currently exist."

Riders pay $1 to start the scooters then 25 cents per minute to use them. The only downfall of the service is the speed, with scooters going a maximum of ten kilometres an hour (to comply with Victorian road rules surrounding scooters) compared to Sydney's newly launched electric bikes, which go up to up to 23kmh. So, for example, a journey from St Kilda to the CBD would take about 45-minutes and cost around $12–13.

When riding the scooters, be aware that Victorian rules also stipulate that you must wear a helmet and that the scooters can't be used on separated bike paths or on roads with a speed limit of more than 50kmh, but they can be used on footpaths. Well, for the moment. LaLux is hoping the extended Ride trial will give the State and Federal Government time to draft more comprehensive rules surrounding electric scooters.

As the scooters are electric, they'll be picked up after 10pm each night by employees, charged and returned to designated spots around St Kilda.

Ride's trial program is running now for an indefinite period. You can download the Ride app here.

Published on December 18, 2018 by Libby Curran

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