Vilnius becomes the first European city to introduce an electric bike hire scheme

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Readers may recognise Mayor Zuokas as the man who recently used a tank to crush an illegally parked car in Vilnius

Vilnius has just become the first European city to introduce an electric bike hire system. It's one of a series of initiatives by Vilnius Mayor Arturas Zuokas aimed at making his city a world leader in sustainable and eco-friendly public transportation schemes.

“It’s good for the people of Vilnius, it’s good for our visitors and it’s good for the city. I’m pleased that Vilnius has taken the lead in providing a new mode of quality public transportation which addresses urban congestion issues that all cities face. I hope that other cities will follow our lead,” stated Mayor Zuokas.

Readers may recognise the mayor as the man who recently used a tank to crush an illegally parked car in Vilnius. Mayor Zuokas took the publicity-seeking action to highlight his city's problem with cars parked in cycle lanes.

The bikes are called 'e-orange' and are detailed with bright orange stripes. They will be available for rental at four Tourism Information Centres located in the downtown and Old Town areas of Vilnius.

Using one of the bikes will cost from 3 euros for the first hour of rental, with increasing hourly costs. As an example, a four-hour ride will cost 26 euros. A 145 euro deposit is required by credit card at the time of rental and is refunded to the renter immediately upon return of the bike to the original rental point. A built in GPS system monitors the whereabouts of the bicycles at any given time.

Vist www.LithuaniaTourism.co.uk if you fancy a trip to Vilnius to test out the scheme...

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