‘Tis the Season …’ – 500 New Scooters Released into San Diego

by on December 21, 2018 · 8 comments

in Ocean Beach

The OB Christmas Tree and new red and green scooters. Photo by Albert C Elliott

Uber and Lyft Unleash 500 Scooters on San Diego

Ride-hailing giants Uber and Lyft have unloaded a combined 500 electric scooters on San Diego this week, joining the fray of dockless transportation options on the city’s streets — and they’re undercutting their competitors.

The two companies made their announcements back to back, with Uber announcing its 200 scooters Wednesday and Lyft announcing about 300 scooters on Thursday.

Uber, which owns the JUMP brand of electric bikes and scooters (the red ones), just deposited about 300 e-bikes in San Diego last month.

Now, the company is offering its scooters at a competitive rate — free until Jan. 9. After that, it’s $1 to start and 10 cents for each minute you ride. That undercuts the popular Bird and Lime scooters, which rent for 15 cents per minute. Lyft originally planned to announce 15 cents per minute, too, until Uber’s big announcement. Now, Lyft says its scooters will cost the same: $1 to unlock and 10 cents per minute.

For more see San Diego Union-Tribune

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

mjt December 21, 2018 at 12:05 pm

I suspect a bait and switch with these scooter companies. I wonder what their real business model says? Picking the scooters up each night is an expensive burden.

If they added a seat, a compartment, reconfigure the hanlebars you have a Vesta type scooter. Then all that is needed is to deliver batteries to the scooters instead of picking up the scooters each evening, and you could charge more.


Dr. Jack Hammer December 21, 2018 at 3:10 pm

I have seen a new, yet dodgy looking, white unmarked Sprinter van with no license plates unloading bikes on Newport or Santa Monica on at least two separate occasions. They are the red bikes from Uber and it is always done at night.


Vern December 21, 2018 at 4:56 pm

Ah yes, scooters… the solution to the last mile “problem”.


ZZ December 24, 2018 at 11:04 am

New companies enter, but old companies exit.

Ofo, the Chinese company with the yellow bikes, is nearly bankrupt. Their bikes were stolen around here in large numbers by homeless, while many others broke and were auctioned off for $5.

FREE to Jan 9 you say? It’s a deal, I will look for one later today. Thanks Uber!


Chris December 25, 2018 at 7:38 am

Their failure has more to do with competition from other bike sharing companies than anything else. Plenty of Limebikes and Mobikes were also stolen from homeless.


ZZ December 26, 2018 at 3:36 pm

No Uber scooters to be found in OB due to the free ride promo.

I tried a Lyft one. There were 100+ Birds around OB available, but only about 5 Lyft scooters.

The Lyft model seems to have more power than Bird. I liked it a little better overall. I took a 30 minute joyride around OB on xmas. I saw more people on scooters than riding bikes. The ratio of scooter riders to cars was about 1:3. That is a giant market share for a brand new mode of transport. Clean, quiet, less space, less danger, no filthy black exhaust, and a bit of exercise involve with riding them (shifting body weight, staying balanced, kicking off.)


Debbie December 27, 2018 at 3:04 am

If scooters are not supposed to be operated or made available to riders between the hours of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m., why don’t these companies make them inoperable during those hours?


Seems like if an accident happens and the scooter is being used during prohibited times, then the scooter company should have a BIG LIABILITY, correct?


Vern December 27, 2018 at 1:51 pm

There appears to be a scooter “shop” at Petco Park’s Tailgate Lot.
Uber, Lyft, Bird, you name it. All prepped, hacked and free to ride.
Why rent when you can “ride for free”? (Antiseptic wipes not included).


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