The New Year brings with it a new price for Divvy riders looking to purchase or renew yearly memberships with Chicago's popular bike share network. Starting in February, an annual membership will rise from $75 to $99. Divvy last increased its rates this past summer when the price for a 24-hour pass rose from $7 to $9.95 — a hike that affected mainly out-of-town visitors and infrequent local users. Last week's announcement marks the first increase for annual riders since the program's launch in the summer of 2013.
Also new this year, Divvy will begin selling monthly passes for any riders unwilling to shell out the full $99 for a yearly membership all at once. Instead Divvy is providing the option to pay $9.95 per month with a twelve-month commitment, bringing the the total yearly price to just under $120 for its layaway payment plan. Back in July of 2015, the City also announced a reduced rate $5 yearly membership for lower income households and individuals without access to debit/credit cards. In 2016 those enrolled or looking to enroll in this reduced-rate "Divvy for All" program will also face a rate hike but it is unclear by how much at this time.
The increases come on the back of a successful 2015 that saw the system expanded from 300 to 476 stations. Now stretching from Touhy to 75th Street, Chicago's Divvy program is the nation's largest bike-share system in terms of number of stations and total geographical area served. 2015 saw Chicagoans log 3.2 million individual Divvy trips — a 30% increase over the year before. While it remains to be seen how the new price will affect yearly ridership, the boost in operating revenue should help ensure the network's continued growth and see that hardware is properly maintained as both riders and the elements take their respective tolls on the system.