Electric Scooters in New York - Everything you need to know!
- Read Time: 9 min
New York City. The big Apple.
The city that makes you feel like you are in a movie. Strolling around Manhattan, gazing up at the skyscrapers amidst the hoipolloi and buzz of everyday life is something you will never forget, whether you live here or are just visiting.
And if there was ever a place where micromobility is the solution to navigating congested city streets, NYC is it.
The e scooter is a brilliant alternative to the subway, especially in times of the corona pandemic where you might want to keep your distance.
E-scooters are allowed in NYC. There are plenty of places to buy or rent electric scooters, and at the time of writing, it is legal to use them although there are restrictions.
Buying e scooters in New York
As ever these days, you can surf the internet and buy all kinds of electric vehicles online or, you might want to visit a store.
There is plenty on offer as far as e-scooter stores go. Visiting Fluidfreeride on 216 Frost St, Brooklyn, NY 11211, USA (by appointment only) will ensure you get great customer service and a wide variety of e scooters to choose from. The staff at hand will help you find the right scooter for your needs which can be tricky.
Buying used scooters in New York
If you don't feel ready to splash out on a brand new e-scooter you can always get a used one.
This way you can get a feel for it, try it out and see if the electric bug bites you.
Fluidfreeride also sells used e scooters and it might be worth getting one from a retailer instead of online. There are some pitfalls to consider.
The main concern is the battery and its lifecycle. All batteries have a lifecycle and buying one from a retailer such as Fluidfreeride will ensure you get what you pay for.
The overall condition of the e scooter is also to be considered and having experts go through them before putting them on the market is adamant.
And, you can try it out and see if you like the ride and handling.
Rental scooters New York
New York City was infamously one of the last remaining holdouts on dockless electric scooters and throttle based electric bikes, as well as pedal assist e bikes punishing the delivery workers amongst others, who have seen the benefits of two wheeled electric vehicles.
This now seems to have come to an end. Finally. And many New Yorkers are happy it did.
At the time of writing (summer 2021), the city’s Department of Transportation (DOT) announced the selection of Bird, Lime, and VeoRide as the participants in its inaugural e-scooter pilot program.
The scooter companies are expected to begin operations in the Bronx by early summer with 1,000 scooters each.
The pilot is expected to last for one year only, but DOT has the option to renew the licenses at the end of the term. The DOT also said it expects most scooter rides to cost less than $5 for customers on average.
These things are always subject to change however, so it is worth checking if your favorite scooter share program is available in the area when you visit. City council is always reviewing matters at hand based on the latest info.
Are electric scooters legal in New York?
E scooters are allowed in New York City. You must not operate it at a higher top speed than 15 mph (24 kph) though.
16 and 17 year olds are required to wear a helmet. All others are recommended to use one.
You can ride them in bike lanes and streets with speed limits no greater than 30 mph (48 kph).
Best roads in New York to ride an electric scooter
There is a lot to see and experience when visiting New York City. Electric bicycles and e scooters are probably the best options to do so effectively. Below we have listed some of them
1. Central Park.
Needless to say. A huge green oasis in the middle of Manhattan will be on your must see and experience list. There are a lot of sights and spots to visit in Central Park.
On an e scooter, you will be able to take it all in quicker than walking. Make sure to look out for other cyclists and joggers though, as there are plenty.
Why not do an electric scooter tour and see famous film locations?
For instance: West Village and the Friends apartment building where many episodes of the series were shot. Rockefeller Center, Empire State Building, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Plaza Hotel, Grand Central Station, The Flatiron Building, The Chrysler Building.
All the above locations are in Manhattan and have featured in movies such as Matrix, King Kong, Home Alone 2, John Wick, When Harry met Sally, Gossip Girl to name but a few.
3. The Hudson
If you want to go for a longer ride along the Hudson river then the New York State Hudson River Greenway bike lane is a must.
It is apparently the busiest in the United States so expect to go at a slow pace and navigate walkers/joggers, and cyclists.
You can start from the George Washington Bridge and end at the East River Bikepath. The route is fantastic and you will see New York from a different perspective.
4. Downtown Brooklyn
Another suggestion would be going from Downtown Brooklyn to Coney Island via Jay Street, Dean Street, Vanderbilt Avenue, Eastern Parkway, Bedford Avenue, Emmons Avenue, and Brighton Beach Avenue.
Bike lanes all the way and you end up on Coney Island with its beaches.
Needless to say, NYC is a heavily populated and dense area. Motor vehicles are more or less on top of each other and city streets are not exactly smooth as a pool table.
Riding an e-scooter here will be super effective, (especially in times of coronavirus), but will also require focus and respect to other fellow citizens sharing the same space of tarmac. One does not come to New York and the first thing you do is try the e-scooters top speed.
But in order to get as much as possible from your trip, the option of either bike share with Citi Bike or an electric scooter will beat Uber all day long.
The freedom and speed with which you can get around, and in a "green" zero emissions kind of way is unbeatable. And on an e scooter, you will not break any sweat either. Easy to park and use and better than a moped all day long. What's not to like?
And if you want to know and learn more about e scooters, please spin by at Fluidfreeride on 216 Frost St, Brooklyn, NY 11211. We are happy to talk and discuss all matters related to e-scooters. Our opening hours are updated on Google Maps.
But remember to always wear a helmet and ride safe and with caution.