Wednesday 4 March 2009

Car broken down ? Borrow a bike.

I don't usually put photos of car repair garages on this blog, but there's a reason for this one.

I noticed as I passed today that there were bicycles inside this car dealership. I initially assumed that they'd be car company branded bikes, perhaps Volkswagen or Audi as this is the local dealership for those marques.

However the answer turned out to be much more interesting than that.

These are loan, or courtesy, bicycles.

If you take a car in for repair and it needs to stay longer than you are willing to wait then you are offered a loan car for €12.50 per day or a loan bicycle for free.

Since seeing this I've realised that these bikes are seen around town quite often, as are bikes on loan from other garages. It's obvious that quite a lot of people choose the free option of the bike as there are quite a few of them. Of course, virtually all of the population of this city are regular cyclists, and this seems like quite a normal thing for garages here to offer, so this won't be particularly out of the ordinary.


2whls3spds said...

I like the idea they are free...I take my own bike when I drop the truck off for repairs at one dealer. It is a small town and it is possible to walk everywhere, but I am lazy.


Rob Ainsley said...

When the London Bike Hire scheme comes in May 2010, I expect car-repair places handy for a docking station will quickly cotton on to the fact that customers can do this sort of thing.

David Hembrow said...

Rob, there is a serious lack of realism about what the scope of that scheme is. A very small number of bikes will be parachuted into a very large city.

Unknown said...

What a great system, it's the sort of forward thinking that I wish we could take on in the UK.

Need to repair your bike, rather than your car? Then why not visit for a great article about replacing your bike's bottom bracket bearings, the photos are a real help too.

Geruman said...

Courtesy bikes were available at the VW dealer in Oldenburg already back in the 1980s... In Cambridge I put a rack on my car or use a folding bike when servicing our car. But I am aware that most motorists don't have such options. It surprises me that garages in places like Cambridge don't offer hire bikes.

David Hembrow said...

I assume it's been going on here for a long time too. It's certainly not something that anyone mentioned to me, and it's not something that the garages make any fuss about. It's just normal.

I used to take a bike with me when taking our car to be serviced in Cambridge - but the mechanics seemed to think it was a bit odd to do so.