In June 2023, the Deutsche Bahn in collaboration with ListNRide is launching its new DB Bike Rental service, the DB Radverleih program, to boost your cycling outings with the arrival of the summer season.
The DB bike rental “Radverleih” principle is simple and effective: leave your own bike at home, take the train and pick up the bike of your dreams directly at your destination, so you can make the most of a wonderful outing or weekend with a great bike.
To set up this new service, DB has teamed up with ListNRide, the leading online platform for bicycle rental between professionals and private individuals. As the originator of this initiative, DB was looking for the best solution to set up a service focused above all on the user experience. The service therefore had to be easy to understand and use, and accessible to as many people as possible. As we, ListNRide, are present throughout Europe and beyond, it was bound to be a successful match. In addition, DB wanted to ensure a quality charter for the fleet of bikes available for hire as part of this project. Once again, ListNRide’s quality requirements met the railways company’s expectations.
This project was born of DB’s ongoing desire to optimize the passenger experience. Last summer, the tremendous success of the 9-euro ticket led to frustrations and bottlenecks on the trains. The trains were often packed with people, limiting movement within the train. Bringing a bike on board could therefore prove difficult and disrupt all train users. A bicycle takes up the space of around 3 people. Their presence on board trains therefore runs counter to the optimization of passenger space, and all the more so at peak times.
As for the cyclists themselves, carrying their bikes on the train can be stressful. When the train is full, it becomes complicated, if not impossible, to make your way through the carriage and get your bike out. This can mean missing your stop. Worse still, there’s a risk of damaging the bike, which would only spoil the benefits of a nice bike trip.
This is why DB wanted to offer an alternative to people who would like to go cycling with the train, but are blocked by the above problems.
The timing of this project is all the more appropriate with the arrival of the new Deutschland Ticket at 49 euros. Indeed, last year’s 9-euro ticket created an unprecedented craze for train use. This new pass, even if a little more expensive than its predecessor, is likely to create a similar movement, particularly around the summer months. Better safe than sorry!
Another major motivation behind the creation of the DB Bike Rental is the urgent need to reduce our energy consumption and co2 emissions in our daily lives, and this involves mobility. Taking your bike on the train instead of in your own car is already a big step forward, since trains are carbon-free, unlike cars.
However, we must not forget that moving bicycles over a distance of several kilometers to go for a ride in the forest or in the mountains requires the use of significant amounts of energy to transport them – even when traveling by train. In a context of reducing our consumption, this is counter-productive. On the other hand, if you pick up bikes already on site, you limit this energy expenditure.
The other major strength of this project is its support for local people living in leisure destinations. Indeed, as a cyclist, it’s important not to simply use the terrain and leave it to the locals to maintain it without any benefit. Unfortunately, this is often what happens when you bring your own bike: you enjoy it, do your ride, then pack up and leave, without having had any contact with the locals or left any share of the wealth to the people who maintain the landscape and bring the place to life on a daily basis.
ListNRide works with professionals and individuals living right in the heart of the destination. By renting a bike with DB Bike Rental “Radverleih”, you’ll be supporting the locals and getting the chance to connect with them to learn more about the place and get the best advice for enjoying the destination.
Finally, another advantage of DB Radverleih is that you can adapt your equipment to suit your needs. Maybe you’ve only got a road bike and you’d like to get off the beaten track in the mountains? Then rent a high-performance mountain bike directly on site. You want to take the kids with you, but you’re not sure they can pedal the 50 kilometers along the river? Rent an electrically-assisted cargo bike. Do you have a friend who’d like to come along, but isn’t used to cycling and doesn’t have his own bike? Once again, the solution is obvious…
The service is flexible and adapts to your needs in all circumstances.
This new program sounds pretty cool, doesn’t it? But how does it work in practice?
Over fifty routes are already available at launch, so there’s no excuse for not knowing where to go!
Once you’ve chosen your destination, all that’s left to do is choose the bike or bikes you’d like for your ride. You can do this by clicking on your chosen destination on the DB home page.
This takes you directly to the ListNRide search page for your destination.
From there, all you have to do is enter your desired bike rental dates and number of bikes. Click on “search” and discover the bikes available. You can then filter the results according to your wishes: type of bike, desired size, etc.
Once you’ve found the bike of your dreams, add it to your basket and follow the steps to finalize your reservation request. You’ll need to prepay the bike rental in order to make your request. However, you will only be debited if the rental company accepts your request. This normally takes place within a few hours.
Once your request has been validated, remember to book your train ticket in advance to avoid the stress of doing so at the station. If you’ve purchased a Deutschland Ticket, then all you have to do is sit back and wait for that great day out!
As soon as you make your reservation request online, we also quickly invite you to get in touch with the Lister via our online chat. This allows you to personalize your bike rental if necessary, and to have all the information you need to pick up your bike on the day. You can also add accessories such as helmets, lights, baby carriers, etc. to your reservation.
The day before and a few hours before your bike rental, you’ll receive a reminder of your reservation by e-mail, with details of how to get to the right place to pick up your bike. If in doubt, you can always contact the Lister.
Remember to bring an identity document with you so that the Lister can see that it was you who booked the bike when you pick it up. All set? Now all you have to do is enjoy your bike tour, and make sure you return it at the time agreed on the reservation.
You’re back home, after a wonderful zero-carbon bike ride. You can be proud of yourself! Now, don’t forget to give some feedback. You’ll receive a short questionnaire by e-mail to help the DB and ListNRide continually improve this service.