People using New Taipei's YouBike rental service will soon be charged for the first half-hour of rental, although the change will not apply to users who transfer to public transportation after their Youbike ride.
Individuals who rent New Taipei YouBikes will be charged NT$5 (US$0.18) for the first 30 minutes, the city's transportation department said in a statement.
However, transfer users, who constitute 75 percent of the total YouBike rider number, will continue to enjoy their first 30 minutes of use free of charge, as part of the city's efforts to encourage the use of public transportation, including the MRT, buses, and trains, it said.
Chung Ming-shih (鍾鳴時), who heads the department, told CNA on Saturday that the change will come into effect in late March at the earliest when all the adjustments have been made to facilitate the change.
Implemented in 2014, the city's YouBike system has a total of 635 stops and 20,265 bikes, the department said, adding that the system sees more than 100,000 rentals per day, bringing its ridership since its establishment to approximately 113 million. 96 percent of YouBike users return their bikes within 30 minutes of use, it added.