While traffic in Hangzhou may seem chaotic to some foreigners, the city is comparably bike-friendly. All but small side roads have dedicated bike lanes, often divided from motor traffic by barricades or medians.
For longer stays in Hangzhou, making use of the city’s extensive public bike system can be a cheap and convenient way to experience the city. These fire engine red public bikes are ubiquitous on the street of Hangzhou, and the rental stations that dispense them are generously spread across the core of the city. To use the bikes, one will need to purchase a stored value card at 20 Longxiang Qiao. To do this, he or she must present an ID (such as a passport) and pay 300 RMB, 200 of which is a deposit with the remaining 100 to cover rentals fees. Bikes may then be rented by tapping the card against one of the automated bike racks holding the bikes. A beep and the audible sound of the rack unlocking will indicate that the bike can be removed. The bike is free for the first hour, 1 RMB an hour for the two hours after that, and 3 RMB an hour thereafter. Bikes are returned by reinserting them into an empty bike rack and tapping one’s card against the top of the rack. Another beep, a solid green light, and the sound of the rack locking will indicate when the bike has been received successfully. Bikes not returned by 8:00 p.m. each night must be taken back to the Longxiang Qiao location, so keep an eye on the clock during evening rides. After ten days from purchase of the card, it may be returned for an 89% refund.