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Maybe you’ve already seen new yellow city bikes on Prague’s roads. If you live in Prague 7, where a free trial of the Chinese Ofo bikesharing service was launched in mid-September, you must definitely know about them. Is it really necessary for Prague to have so many bicycles on its streets?

Ofo Bikesharing is on the Horizon: Does Prague really need more bicycles?!

Eva Ledecká
05.Nov 2017
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2 minutes to read
Ofo bikesharing míří na Prahu

Shortly after the residents of Prague and other Czech cities became used to and started to make use of a new service in the form of luxury Rekola bikesharing, Ofo city bikes appeared in Prague 7, which offer the same service; for change, however, in a yellow colour. For now it functions as a free trial operation in Prague 7, where about 300 bikes should be operating by the end of the year. In the future, however, Prague should be filled with 3,000 luxuriously yellow bikes!

And so we are asking if it is not too much already. Tourists on segaways and luxury scooters are whizzing around through the streets, pink Rekola bikes are also operating in Prague, while hidden behind the door is the Chinese giant Ofo, and it has also been speculated that competitors, in the form of Mobike and oBike bikesharing companies, could arrive here. Is this really necessary?

Ofo states on its Czech website that it wants to solve problems involving the urban transport. Really?

Prague has the most sophisticated urban transport system in Europe. From all directions, you can get to the city centre by metro, by tram or on a bus in a very short time. Uber does very well here. For several years, Prague has faced traffic jams and crowded traffic. Does Ofo really think that those who still drive by car will start riding on a yellow bicycle? Unlikely!

Luxusní vila na prodej, Dolní Měcholupy - 616m
Luxusní vila na prodej, Dolní Měcholupy - 616m, Praha 10

Munich is troubled by an opposite problem: How to get rid of bicycles from the city!

It will happen that those who were using public transport or walking will start to use bikesharing. In Prague, they will actually interfere with cars and pedestrians, because of their fear of cars they often ride on the pavement. Notwithstanding the fact that Prague is a small city as compared to the other European metropolises and there are not such luxurious conditions for bicycles as there are in Berlin, in Amsterdam or Munich, for example. And it is in Munich, where bikesharing has been working for some time now, that is now actually struggling to get rid of bicycles. This city is literally flooded with bicycles and the situation has become unsustainable.

Many may argue that bicycling is a physical activity and that people will at least do something to take care of their own health. Let’s be honest: breathing in the heavy Prague air during the sporting activities and stressing that a nervous driver will hit you around the corner is not healthy. Rather, it is a trend and a luxurious gap in the market that active entrepreneurs try to fill in, unfortunately at any cost and to the last free spot.

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