How to use Las Palmas de Gran Canaria City Bikes "ByBike"

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria has a municipal bike system, but registering for it is rather complicated and especially difficult if you don’t live here and understand Spanish, so I decide to write a guide, as I have just done it. The system is available to non-residents.

What you get

  • You can pick up a bike at any point and return it to any other.

  • You can keep the bike out for up to one hour.

  • After returning, you need to wait 15 minutes to use one again.

  • You can borrow a bike up to five times per day.

Rental is done with a smartcard or a phone app.

What it Costs

  • 1.50 EUR for the smart card, which also can be used for busses. Usage is free.

  • Possibly various fees if you are late returning the bike or lose the bike, don’t report them as damaged…

How to Register

  • Fill in this form

  • You will receive two emails. Ignore the first. In the second email, click the link “HAGA CLICK AQUÍ”. This takes you to a form which asks for your Spanish tax number. You don’t need one. What you actually should enter here is your passport or ID document number that you put in the last form. Follow the process for verifying phone number. (You must receive a text message.)

  • Wait for 24 to 48 hours, then go to one of the registration offices with your passport or ID. A few offices are listed in the emails you are sent, but I actually went to San Telmo bus station, which was not listed but worked.

  • Buy a BONOGUAGUA smart card for 1.50 EUR. It is yellow. At San Telmo, you can do this at the ticket office with the glass window, in a corner. I think you can also do it at a machine.

  • Go to the ByBike / Bus office. At San Telmo, this is the larger office you can walk into, to the right of the glass ticket office booth. Give them your ID, yellow card, and say you want to register for ByBike. “Quiero registrarme para ByBike”. They will look you up on the computer. If you waited long enough since the last step, they will validate it and that should be other. Otherwise it might still be “pendiente” - come back later.

You should now be able to use the bikes!

Using the Bikes

You can use the card, or a mobile app. The app shows where stations are, and how many bikes and spaces are at each place. You can also take a bike out without the card at most stations.

For the app (optional):

  • Download the app: Android or iOS

  • Login with username and password that you will receive in a third email, after your ID is validated at the office.

  • Take a screenshot of the map while you still have internet, because the app does not work at all offline.

Hints

  • The whole system is badly designed and maintained. Check the bike thoroughly before you try to take it.

  • The card readers almost don’t work at all. Try holding the card at 90 degrees to the way indicated.

  • Count the number of usages in a day, because if you try a sixth loan, it will work, but then block you for a month! Days end at midnight.


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