Thursday, October 2, 2014

This rant from tourist covers almost every known complaint about Citi Bike

In one long tirade, it covers:

  • Tourists who didn’t understand 30-minute ride limit
  • Multiple dock-lock encounters
  • Downed stations
  • Witnessed theft of bikes at downed station
  • NotSpot encounters
  • Anger at holding deposit for 10 days

I'm very disappointed with my 1st and last Citi Bike experience.

We got 3 day passes (my husband, daughter, and myself) and initially were very excited to ride the Citi bikes on our family outing, but were hesitant due to the lack of pricing transparency. After riding for about 15 minutes, we decided to call Citi bike and better understand the pricing.

After the customer service rep explained the way it worked we raced to the nearest Citi bike dock to try and beat the 30 minute limit in order to avoid the overage charges. Upon arrival to the citi bike dock we were unable to dock the bikes due to several faulty docking stations.

After being there for about 10 minutes, we finally found 3 docking stations. Once again we decided to call Citi Bike and spent 10 minutes on the phone with them alerting them about the broken docking stations and confirming that our bikes had been properly docked. They did not offer to assist us with the situation or even offer to extend our time.

In the interim as we were contemplating taking the bikes back out we saw a group of kids passing by and taking about 4 bikes which were unlocked due to the faulty dock system . We then called customer service again to alert them of this situation.

Once again we were hesitant to take the city bike back out, but decided to try it again since we had already paid for our day passes and get back to the original location where we first rented the bikes. This time we had downloaded the app and carefully mapped out our destination and docking stations along the way in order to avoid any overage charges and allow plenty of time to dock the bikes in case we ran into any issues as we did at the prior docking station.

We arrived at the next docking station within 15 minutes, but decided to head to the next one 2 blocks away due to the lack of available docks. When we arrived at the next docking station I tried to use the kiosk in order to extend my time due to a lack of docking stations available, but the kiosk failed to work. I then called to complain, which took about another 10 minutes of my time. The customer service agent then advised me to call back when I got to the next docking station.

We got to the next docking station which was about 10 blocks away and once again there was no availability at the docking station. Shortly after 3 docking stations became available. I then spent another 15 minutes of my time calling back the customer service agent to confirm that we had arrived and docked the bikes and to complain of my experience and was not content with the customer service provided by Citi bike.

To add to the quagmire and approximately 40 minutes of my time wasted on calling the Citi bike customer service number due to the many obstacles that came about a hold of $303 was placed on my checking account. When I asked customer service when this would be returned to me they advised that it would take 10 days to return the $303. This too was deceptive and was not clearly stated in any of rental terms at the Kiosk.

Overall, this was one of our worse NYC experiences and Citi Bike has a lack of customer service, offers faulty equipment, has deceptive pricing and charging practices. Citi Bike needs to carefully re-evaluate how to better serve the consumer. I am a native New Yorker and had to deal with this nightmare. I could only imagine how the many tourists who have been a victim of Citi Bikes practices feel. Shame on you Citi Bike!

Source: Facebook

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