Electric Scooters Soon for Rent in Reykjavík

Vala Hafstað

Getting around Reykjavík could soon get easier when electric scooters become available for rent.

Ægir Giraldo Þorsteinsson, one of the founders of the new electric scooter rental service Hopp tells Fréttablaðið that the first 100 scooters will arrive in the country in July, and, if all goes well, they should be available for rent by the end of the summer.

The founders of the service work for the software company Aranja ehf, and there are no investors in the project outside Aranja ehf.

The scooters will be available at various locations throughout the city, and customers can rent them using an app.

“Registered users will always be able to see where the nearest scooter is located and how much charge remains,” Ægir explains. “Then, you scan the QR barcode and take off. Finally, you leave it for the next user.” The price for the rental has not been revealed.

The scooters will be collected and charged overnight.  It remains to be seen how long into the winter they will be used. “We hope the weather allows for us to use them into November,” Ægir states.

Fréttablaðið reports that planning officials in Reykjavík and Akureyri are positive toward such service.

Ægir states that the electric scooters save time and reduce emissions on shorter trips in town. The ones to be purchased by Hopp have a range of 50 km (31 mi) on one charge and can carry up to 140 kg (309 lbs) .

Jökull Sólberg Auðunsson, a city transport consultant, is hopeful that the scooters will be welcomed by residents. “The trouble in our country is not distances, but rather hills and the wind. That’s when electricity comes in handy,” he notes.

According to Statistics Iceland, the import of electric bikes and scooters increased considerably last year compared to the previous year. The value of the import increased from ISK 117.5 million (USD 938,000; EUR 828,000) in 2017 to ISK 225 million (USD 1.8 million; EUR 1.6 million) in 2018. 

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