Step 3: Basic costs to consider

Below are costs, separated into capital and operational costs, that you may want to include in your plans. There may be other costs depending on your type of scheme, intentions, and existing set up, but this list is designed to help you cover the basics for an average sized community bike share fleet. More info can also be found here.

Approximate capital costs: 

  • Bikes (explore different buying guides to help you navigate bike costs and choices etc.)

How different types of bikes can impact costs for a scheme: 

  • Any type of e-bike will need charging facilities which involves electricity costs (potentially absorbed into overheads)
  • Cargo bikes, adaptive bikes and trikes will require more training for users and owners, and higher maintenance and storage costs
  • Different bikes could impact insurance costs, so double check when you get quotes from providers
  • Spare e-bike batteries (~£500)
  • Accessories such as helmets, lights, pannier racks etc.
  • Storage (Community Bike Share guidance)
  • Standard bike locks (£50) or smart locks (approximately £100)
  • Trackers – varies e.g., £200 per tracker plus subscription costs if linked to a smartphone

Approximate running/operational costs 

  • Insurance  – contact providers for quotes as they vary depending on schemes, or ask existing schemes
  • Governance costs for running a scheme if setting up a new entity to do so
  • Maintenance costs (speak to local bike shops about what to expect for different bikes and how often checks will be needed)
  • Overheads e.g.
    - Salaried staff plus costs such as PAYE
    - Office costs and equipment such as laptops
  • Tech related costs
  • Promotional costs
  • Administrative or booking costs
  • Charging e-bike batteries 
  • Cycling training costs for staff and users (courses available and depends on type of bikes e.g., cargo bike may require specific training)
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