Scooter Rides Aren't So Cheap Anymore

Although electric scooter rental companies won't confirm the reasoning behind price increases for scooter rides in the Washington, D.C. region, it's likely the same story will be repeated in other regions as well.

1 minute read

October 21, 2019, 12:00 PM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Electric Scooter Joicer

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Luz Lazo reports on a new era in the still very young history of electric scooter rentals:

Scooter companies operating in the Washington region have raised their rental prices, dropping the introductory 15-cents-per-minute rides that were widely appealing in exchange for per-minute charges that range from 24 cents to 39 cents, depending on the company. That’s in addition to the $1 unlocking fee some charge. Experts predict prices may go even higher as companies face more fees from cities and increasing pressure to turn a profit.

According to Lazo, all of the scooter rentals companies operating in the District offer programs to discount the costs of rides for low-income users.

"But some riders say the new prices can be comparable to taking Uber Pool and much higher than taking the bus, which costs $2. A 20-minute ride on Bird runs nearly $8.80, plus tax; the same ride is $5, plus tax, on a Jump scooter, the cheapest option," according to Lazo.

Experts cited in the article say the increasing prices are unsurprising given the costs imposed by regulations designed to mitigate the negative effects of the sudden proliferation of electric scooters in the public realm.

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