Walking home from the Tube last night, my eyes fell upon brand new and shiny bike docking stations a couple blocks from my flat.  AWESOME!!!

For those of you moving to London who might not yet be aware, the city is introducing a new cycle hire scheme (sponsored by Barclays, London Relocation Ltd.‘s bank of choice through which we set our clients up with their accounts in one day to make relocating to London that much easier!).

The Transport for London website outlines the scheme, but, basically, residents will now be able to rent bicycles for commuting or recreation.  It’s similar to the Zipcar concept in which you can rent a car that is parked somewhere in your local area, picking it up and dropping it off back in its designated street space independent of having to actually walk into a rental office.

You can start renting bikes as of now if you sign up for a membership, whereby you’ll get a “key” to the terminal that will release the bike from its lock; you will also be able to manage your account online.  This is the way to go if you’ll be a frequent user, as it will save money and add convenience.

Alternatively, if you prefer to wait a little longer, coming soon is an option for “Casual Use” for only the occasional rental, like if you simply want to pedal through one of our many beautiful gardens.  This is open to non-UK residents, so even if you’re just visiting as a tourist, you can take tourism to a fun new level—there are even guided cycle rides!  Access is obtained either directly at the docking station, online, or by phone.

I’ve embedded the helpful how-to video above for your reference (hey Americans, no giggling at the way they spell “tires”) and am positively psyched for London to become the next cycle-friendly Amsterdam.  Let’s get rollin’!