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Bike Sharing: Mobike

A couple of months ago I was considering buying a new city bike since my previous bike got stolen. I was craving nice bike rides to occupy my sunny weekends; the city issued cycles seemed too tax to register for and the bike stands demand a cash deposit along with a return trip. I asked around my WeChat groups for any suggestions and this guy suggested Mobike. At the time of his suggestion, I hadn't seen a single bike in my area. I registered anyway and discovered through the app's GPS that there were a few bikes a block or two away from my apartment. However, about a week or two later, I saw rows of bikes along streets and it was gorgeous!
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Soon after, I saw competitors like Ofo, BlueGoGo and another bike-share company that's all in Chinese. I tried to register for the others because Mobike was too in-demand and becoming less visible. It didn't work out too well; Ofo and BlueGoGo offer English but failed to approve my registration three times. In addition, my coworker casually admitted how easy it was for her to unlock an Ofo bike that she didn't reserve. So, I stuck with Mobike.

I know bike sharing isn't new to the world, but this upgraded version that doesn't need a bike station and only requires a smartphone is awesome! Gone are the days where I spend my non-commutes underground instead of enjoying the sites of a concrete jungle. Yes!


I'm a Mobike kind of gal now... of course, by default. The bike is sturdy, even though, the handlebars aren't as stiff as a mountain bike. The height of the seat is not adjustable, but I'm 5'7 and fine with it. The gears are well protected and concealed by the bike's metal frame, which means you won't be able to adjust them. Consequently, the pedaling can be a mixture of easy and tiring without any change in terrain. On the brighter side, you only have to pay a refundable $45 to use any bike, anytime and you will be charged around $0.15 for every hour that the bike is in use. Despite its quirks, I still enjoy how affordable and convenient it can be for local and expat city dwellers,  like myself.

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