This is the first anniversary of the introduction of scooter sharing to Barcelona and it has caused a furore. At some point, you have no doubt seen an electric scooter from one of the scooter-sharing companies parked on the pavement or driving down the street. You might even have tried out the system or be a regular user. Scooter-sharing is definitely here to stay!
There are currently almost 710 electric scooters available throughout the city, managed by three companies: eCooltra, Motit and Yugo. The first two run similar services in other European capitals, like Madrid, Paris and Milan, while Yugo is fast consolidating its operations in Barcelona.
If you have tried out one of the three services, you are probably wondering which one is best. At LIVE, we have used all three and they made an equally positive impact on us. We have made a comparison though so that you can decide which one suits you best.
Although the three companies began to offer scooter sharing services at more or less the same time, eCooltra has the biggest fleet. Its 360 Govecs electric scooters stand out for their modern urban appearance, and the company covers an area of 40 km2 from Plaza de Europa in L’Hospitalet de Llobregat to the Forum and from La Sagrera to the city’s beaches. However, this service is still not fully available in the old quarter (except for the Ramblas and Vía Laietana, and some streets in La Barceloneta) and neither does it cover much of the Gracia district. In these last areas, you can ride an eCooltra scooter but there is no parking point.
eCooltra is also committed to total sustainable mobility, since the electricity company HolaLuz supplies it with electricity from renewable sources and the vans that are used to maintain the scooters are also electric (the Nissan E-NV 200 model).
eCooltra’s fleet has an average age of less than a year, and the company charges a price of €0.24 a minute.
Motit started operating in June 2016. What strikes your attention about its 200 scooters is their absence of a plastic chassis, in addition to the GPS screen integrated in the handlebar. The Core – the name of the model they use – was custom-designed for use in scooter sharing schemes by Going Green. This means that it is a lightweight scooter (weighing about 80 kg). The service is available in an area stretching from Fabra i Puig to La Barceloneta, and from Pueblo Nuevo to the axis of Avinguda del Paralelo – Calle de Santos – Calle de la Cruz Cubierta.
Motit’s fleet currently has an average age of six months (the time the scooters have been in service), although the company plans to extend it soon to up to 250 scooters.
Motit charges €0.18 a minute from 8 a.m. to midnight and €0.24 a minute from midnight to 8 a.m. at weekends. It also offers 50-minute vouchers for €9, 75-minute ones for €12 and 100-minute ones for €14.
The third company, Yugo, started operating barely a year ago on February 10th 2016, pioneering the service in Barcelona with three Emco Retro Noval scooters. Now its fleet of 60 green Yugo scooters, which look a bit like Vespas, have become a symbol of this concept of mobility. The heads of the company wanted a scooter that conveyed a young carefree image while also being powerful and easy to manoeuvre. Yugo currently covers an area of 40 km2, from Pedralbes to the Forum and from Sant Andreu Arenal bus station to La Barceloneta.
Yugo also hopes to double its fleet over the next few months, although the average age of its scooters is currently less than 6 months.
As for its prices, as well as its standard price of €0.22 a minute, it also offers two packs: 100 minutes for €19 (€0.19 a minute) and 500 minutes for €85 (€0.17 a minute).
Obviously safety is always a priority and so all the scooters come equipped with two helmets and paper head protectors for hygiene reasons. Both the user and their companion have full insurance cover, so if you have a B-type driving licence and you are over 18 but do not wish to own or cannot afford a scooter to get around the city, now you have no excuse.
Which company you choose depends on you, but in none of the three cases will you release any CO2 emissions![:]