Fly & Cycle - the up and coming airline ancillary
Pretty much everyone is familiar with the "Fly & Drive" concept. Now Dutch bike platform BimBimBikes wants you to also "Fly & Cycle".
And why not?
Cycling is an ideal way to explore a new city, particularly in those parts of Europe that have bike-friendly urban centers.
Even if many cities have their own bike sharing schemes, these are often not that practical for non-residents. Bike rental shops are an option, visitors may not known where to find them or, simply, as much as they may enjoy cycling, they do not think about it when planning the trip.
Things may change if travellers are presented with the bike rental offering during their airline booking process, tough, just as it happens with other ancillaries, such as the hotel, the rental car or a guided tour.
A rolling success
In fact, when BimBimBikes launched a joint promotion with KLM, the Dutch flag carrier, offering the bike rental option to passengers traveling from Amsterdam to 25 selected cities. Those interested in renting a bike at destination, had only to select the option and they were sent a voucher. The success was remarkable. According to Michel Willems, of BimBimBikes, up to 90% of the vouchers were redeemed, an amazingly high figure.
Mr. Willems highlights how, despite being a niche market segment, it is actually larger than many would think, with people usually booking in groups and for several days, which means average ticket can end up being quite significant.
The Dutch firm, that works as an aggregator of bike rental services from all over the World, is already in discussions with KLM and other airlines to integrate the bike booking option in the airline booking process.
Possibly one day renting a bicycle with your flight will sound as natural as renting the car...