We finally “borked”!

Oh, get your minds out of the gutter!  Borking is the new hip slang term for the Boris Bikes,  or if you’re being really proper, the new Barclays Cycle Hire Scheme here in London. It’s a really great concept. Basically the city (paid for by Barclays) has put in a ton of bike racks, with really nice (although heavily branded) bikes all over the city. You become a member, get a little plastic-key-cardy-thing in the mail, and then you can rent a bike. It’s super easy. You just walk up to a bike, insert your little plastic-key-cardy-thing, and off you go!  It’s not free, of course. There is an access fee, and a usage fee, but you get the first 30 minutes at no charge.

I loved the bike. It’s nice and sturdy, much like a Dutch bike, with 3 gears and cute little faux-basket in the front where you can strap stuff. The seat height is also adjustable. But mostly the bikes feel really strong, like they could take a beating and still come out the winner. I think that’s going to be important for long term viability.

So on Monday night Alex and I had dinner near the Gloucester Road tube station, and then headed over to Royal Albert Hall to attend a Prom concert (it was Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concert … divine!). Since we had a few spare minutes, and we saw a borking station, we hopped on board and zipped over to Hyde Park. We only had time for a brief swing up and down the promenade, but that was perfect because we had to get to concert hall.  Alex thinks he’ll start borking from Vauxhall to work in the mornings — as long as he can find a route without a lot of traffic. We’re both still pretty intimidated by the cars, but I think with a little practice that will pass.


Posted on 08/09/2010, in Exploring the UK, Transit, travel, Within London and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Suzanne M-G

    Hi there! Believe it or not, we have these in Denver, too, now. The city put them in.

  2. To get the best value, you’ll need the map of where all the docking stations are, so that you can plan where to drop the bike within the first 30 minutes. I’m a huge fan of the principle, and use the ones in Paris all the time when I’m there (my record is 46 trips in two weeks, total cost 16 euro – about a third of what I would have paid if I’d done it all on the buses or metro).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s