If you are in Lisbon it’s really hard not to notice and talk about the Electric Scooters. They are one of Nathan’s favourite things since we have been here. We came across them earlier in the year in Brussels, Belgium and had about an hour whizzing around the city sightseeing on them. It was March and a drizzly day and we ended up on quite a few busy main roads (legally).
So even though we enjoyed it I wouldn’t say I was dying to have another go. It has been much more enjoyable here.
Firstly there are many providers of electric scooters, from the more known and used Lime, to Frog, Bird and then our favourite so far Bolt. Download the app, put in a payment card, scan a scooter and away you go. They are not left in any specific designated area but simply where the last persons finishes using them. Here is how it works…
1. Download the app for the scooter company you want to use.
2. Set up a basic account and assign a card to be charged to use.
3. Use the map to see where scooters are (unless you already have one in view) in relation to you and also check out any areas that are no ride zones so you know where to avoid/where you can’t ride.
4. Go up use the scan barcode button to activate the scooter.
5. On first use the app will explain a few rules and ask you to agree that you have read and understood them.
6. A noise will indicate your scooter has been activated.
7. Kick back the kick stand , get on the scooter and start scootering once you have got some movement use the accelerator to power your journey, and of course your brake to slow you down.
8. Obviously watch out for pedestrians, bikes, cars, buses and trams and scooter carefully and sensibly.
9. There are plenty of paved areas to ride and also plenty of pathways designed for scooters and bikes. Seeing what other people are doing gives you a good idea what is acceptable.
10. Don’t forget Portugal is known for it’s beautiful paved path tiling. However these aren’t known for giving a smooth ride. So bear that in mind..
11. When you are at your destination. Park your scooter with the kick stand in a safe place and preferably not in the way (people are pretty bad for just leaving them in the most inconvenient places).
12. Opt to finish the ride on the app then it prompts you to take a photo of the scooter and off you go.
The reason we have preferred Bolt is that there is no unlocking charge like there are with other companies and at €0.07 a minute use, it’s very reasonable. Also the wheels are thicker so gives a smoother ride. They are also fluorescent green and can be easily spotted! All scooters come with an automatic light which comes on in the dark.
Some people use them for sightseeing and looking around the city which is also great. We have found it a useful, efficient way of getting from A to B, or commuting back from school or dinner out. A little more interesting than a bus or taxi.
Enjoy the electronic scooters safely and responsibly!