Best shared mobility services to get around Barcelona

Between motorbike rental, car rental, and short-term cycling, Barcelona has plenty of great urban mobility options

Bicing public shared mobility bikes at Barcelona's Arc de Triomf. (Photo: Nazaret Romero)
Bicing public shared mobility bikes at Barcelona's Arc de Triomf. (Photo: Nazaret Romero) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

July 9, 2019 07:23 PM

You have many different options if you’re looking for how to get around Barcelona city center or travel further afield. However, every different urban mobility possibility comes with its own pros and cons. Some shared mobility options are faster, others are cheaper, and if you’re traveling in a group, perhaps a car is your only choice to fit everybody on board. 

There is, of course, the metro, bus services, and the regional train, but these options can be limiting for some, or else not offer exactly what groups are looking for. Instead of waiting in queues for buses to arrive or squashing into stuffy metros, take control of your journey and see more of the city on a rented bike, scooter, or motorbike. In Barcelona, there are plenty of shared mobility apps already operating in the market, meaning queues and arrival times can be a thing of the past. 

We examine here the different selections you can take if you’re looking for the best way to get around Barcelona or Catalonia. 

Scoot around the Catalan capital 

With the arrival of Wind, a new urban mobility solution offering short-term rentals of electric scooters, to Barcelona, the streets of the Catalan capital are going to be looking very different soon. Wind have secured contracts with private companies for renting spaces to park the scooters once you’ve completed your journey - users won’t be able to leave them on public land wherever they want. 

They’ve arrived initially with 50 electric scooters, offering fast, easy, efficient, and environmentally clean modes of transport. By the end of the year, the company hopes to expand to a deployment of around 200 scooters in Barcelona, meaning supply will be no issue for users. 

Motorbike rental in Barcelona

Barcelona’s relatively compact size and good network of roads means that motorbikes and mopeds let you get around the Catalan capital with such speed and ease. Motorbike rental in Barcelona is hugely popular among locals, who are trading possession for the shared services economy in their droves. There’s a lot less attraction to spending hundreds of euros on purchasing and maintaining your own motorbike when you can just as easily rent them for great value prices. 

If this interests you, YEGO, Cooltra, or the more environmentally friendly eCooltra shared mobility solutions could be fantastic ideas to get started with. All offer short-term motorbike renting services, and with Cooltra you can book medium- and long-term motorbike rentals, if you were interested to take the vehicle on a longer road trip. All services can be paid per minute of use, or else fixed-prices for longer rentals.

Barcelona car rental

For families, renting a car in Barcelona might be the preferred option over scooters, motorbikes, and bicycles, particularly if you’re looking at doing longer trips possibly outside of the city.

Ubeeqo is one service that starts from as little as €2.50 per hour, but can also be booked by the day. On the app you can simply select the make and model you want to rent, reserve your booking, and return the vehicle where you picked it up in the first place.

Social Car is another useful app on the market, connecting car owners directly with car renters. Social Car puts you in contact with a car owner and you can rent their vehicle for a fixed length of time.

Rent a bike in Barcelona

For residents of the city, the public cycling scheme Bicing offers the perfect bike-sharing service. For just €50 per year, residents can rent a bike as many times as they want for up to half an hour. Cyclists then have to park the bike within that half hour margin, and then wait ten minutes before they can take out another bike again.

The service began all the way back in 2007 and saw a major refresh at the beginning of 2019, with a whole new fleet of bicycles and more stations added. Bicing currently boasts over 100,000 registered users, who avail of the 6,000 bikes and over 500 stations every day. 

Unfortunately, you can only avail of Bicing’s services if you’re a resident of Spain, as you need the national ID number to register. If you’re only in Barcelona for a short time, there are many different rental shops that are easily found, renting bikes for as little as around €10 per day.