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Barclays Cycle Hire

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Monday 2 August 2010 9.21pm
Yes they're a comfortable ride although I did have some slightly unpleasant interaction from a rather vicious speed hump this afternoon.
Monday 2 August 2010 9.55pm
All good except....the way they are geared makes them soooo slooowwwwwww even in 3rd. And no, I don't want to go 40mph like the lycra terrorists but on a long stretch like Long Lane it would be good not to have to coast.
Tuesday 3 August 2010 12.03pm
My account was suspended again overnight.

Can't get through to the call centre to sort it out.

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Tuesday 3 August 2010 12.41pm
James Hatts wrote:
Can't get through to the call centre to sort it out.

This may be a coincidence rather than a cure, but I just called 020 8216 6666 (the non 0845 helpine number) and pressed 0 every time I got a recorded message, my call was answered in 00:21.
Tuesday 3 August 2010 2.30pm
I just got a call from Dmitri - direct number 0208 443 7289 - at tfl cycle hire.

He said that there has been delays looking for my missing bike because he had been on annual leave!

I've sent them a photo of the bike I took out, where I left it, locked in place.

When I explained that the bike was locked in place, and that it was unreasonable to be charged 150 because the docking station was broke, Dmitri said I should have wiggled the bike free somehow and tried again. : )
Wednesday 4 August 2010 7.09am
I came across this mention of James Hatts & SE1 website:
http://www.gulf-times.com/site/topics/article.asp?cu_no=2&item_no=377985&version=1&template_id=38&parent_id=20
whilst I was googling 'problems with bike hire website'
(haven't been able to access their website over past few days, although this won't dampen my enthusiasm!)
Wednesday 4 August 2010 7.28am
The 'Boris Cycle Hire'. Is there such a thing as blond paint? I guess magnolia comes close.
Wednesday 4 August 2010 9.10am
I spoke to someone at tfl cycle hire who was very pleasant and helpful yesterday.
They reacticated my account, refunded the 150 and sent someone to check on the missing bike.

Although this morning my account has been suspended again and I have been fined 150 again.

Oh, as it took them 3 days to check on the bike - lo and behold - someone else had taken the bike out, so it wasn't there anymore.
I've been told that if they don't eventually find the bike I may have to go to the police to report it stolen.
I only got the refund the first time because I had gone to check the bike myself and taken a photo of it safely in place where I left it.
Wednesday 4 August 2010 9.17am
My account was also suspended again this morning (for a third time)

Their system seems to automatically suspend accounts overnight where there is still a pending fine, even if it has already been manually waived and refunded.

(Of course, the fine is applied instantly but it takes 5 working days to eradicate all mention of it from your cycle hire account...)

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Wednesday 4 August 2010 11.36am
With all the troubles and fines, wouldn't it make more sense to buy your own bike?
By the way, why does not the scheme have a proper name like Velib in Paris, Bicing in Barcelona or Bixi in Montreal. Is Barclays going to sponsor it forever?
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