Have You Explored the New Capital Bikeshare App Yet?

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Erin Potter Tweet Us @BikeArlington@BikeArlington August 25, 2017

Erin Potter is the former Program Manager for BikeArlington.

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As an occasional Capital Bikeshare user, I have some residual anxieties about using the system—most of which are rather silly—and yet, they persist. Just how far can I get in 30 minutes? Did I get a green light when I returned that bike? Well, the new Capital Bikeshare app definitely solved some of these concerns for me. Plus, it adds some impressive functionality in general.

Here are some of my favorite updates and new features:

Woman smiling with hands on handle bar grips at a Bikeshare station, ready to check out a bike.

Find Bikes and Docks

  • The app retains Spotcycle’s map of Bikeshare stations, including color-coded ratings for bike and dock availability.
  • It displays a special icon at stations that have Corral Service—highlighting the locations where you’re guaranteed a place to park the bike.
  • You can add favorite stations for easy recall from the app.

Rent a Bike—Sans Key!

Screenshot of new Capital Bikeshare App, displaying data from the last completed trip and a timer tracking the current ride

The “drawer” from the new Capital Bikeshare app, displaying last trip data and a timer for your current ride.

If I’m being honest, my phone is usually much easier to find than my keys. You know you’re guilty of it too. It’s already in your hand, right?

  • Well, the app allows you to log into your Bikeshare account and receive a ride code.
  • Enter the code at the bike dock to check out two wheels and you’re on your way!

It’s incredibly useful if you forgot your key or prefer not to have a ton of keychain bling.

Receive Ride Notifications

Once enabled, these push notifications ping you helpful messages about your ride.

  • Checking out a bike? There’s a timer to help you keep your trip under 30 minutes.
  • When you’ve completed a ride, a notification alerts that you’ve docked the bike successfully and shows your stats for the ride.

For me, this end of trip notification is gold. You get confirmation that your bike was returned successfully, but also, the immediate feedback of how long the trip took has helped me realize how many of my usual destinations are within an absurdly easy 10-minute ride, even at a leisurely Bikeshare pace.

Purchase a Pass

For riders who aren’t key holders, the app allows you to purchase a 24-Hour or 3-Day Pass, Single-Trip Fare Pass and even an Annual Membership. I highly recommend this feature to tech-savvy tourists looking to skip the long lines at busy Bikeshare stations or locals looking to impress their out-of-town friends by breezing past the kiosk lines and nabbing that last bike. (Just kidding. That’s not cool.)

 So, have you tried it yet? What’s your favorite feature?

The Capital Bikeshare mobile app is available on the App Store or Google Play!

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