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Thread: Incentivizing bike rebalancing

  1. #1
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    Default Incentivizing bike rebalancing

    Inspired by my latest CaBi survey, I'll ask something that I don't understand. Why doesn't CaBi have user-based methods of incentivizing rebalancing of bikes? I.e. perhaps if you take a bike to a rack that has 1 or fewer bikes, you get a dollar or two in your account. Likewise, if you remove a bike from a station that is almost full, you get the same. I'm not sure what the right amount is but I think there probably is an amount that makes sense. This could be a complement to the vans.

    The survey seemed to completely overlook the notion that people avoid using the system because they cannot have confidence they will be able to get a bike or a dock when they need one. That is certainly true for me and I know several one-time users who at least said that their challenges getting a bike or a dock prevented them from becoming members. (I'm a reasonably happy member, but I also know I cannot count on the system for certain trips so I don't try.)

    Also, are there ever metrics on whether stations usage meets expectations? My hunch is that certain stations would be a lot more helpful in other locations.
    Last edited by elbows; 10-06-2016 at 11:54 AM.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by elbows View Post
    Inspired by my latest CaBi survey, I'll ask something that I don't understand. Why doesn't CaBi have user-based methods of incentivizing rebalancing of bikes? I.e. perhaps if you take a bike to a rack that has 1 or fewer bikes, you get a dollar or two in your account. Likewise, if you remove a bike from a station that is almost full, you get the same. I'm not sure what the right amount is but I think there probably is an amount that makes sense. This could be a complement to the vans.

    The survey seemed to completely overlook the notion that people avoid using the system because they cannot have confidence they will be able to get a bike or a dock when they need one. That is certainly true for me and I know several one-time users who at least said that their challenges getting a bike or a dock prevented them from becoming members. (I'm a reasonably happy member, but I also know I cannot count on the system for certain trips so I don't try.)

    Also, are there ever metrics on whether stations usage meets expectations? My hunch is that certain stations would be a lot more helpful in other locations.
    I have had exactly this idea in the past: take a bike from a full station and get a $0.50 credit on your membership. Likewise by docking in an empty one. I have to believe it costs them more than 50 cents per bike to rebalance, so this should work out as well as improving customer satisfaction. No credit if you redock or remove from the same station, and max $1 credit per day or something. Details could be worked out.

    I also believe that there needs to be more stations closer together throughout most of the system. Getting dockblocked with the next closest station 1/2 mile away is non-tenable.

  3. #3
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    Incentivizing bike rebalancing is an anagram for

    vain linebacker vincent ng iz biig

    thanks

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