Two wheel deals

Two legs good, two wheels better. If you're lacking in pedal power but unwilling to spring for your own steed, check out some of the city's best deals on bike renting.

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Photo by Rasa Urnieziute
If you’re just passing through or unwilling to risk the theft of your fancy new fixie, here are some of Berlin’s best bike rental options. Open since April, Hello World Berlin helps self-conscious Touris disguise their ineptitude by renting out eye-catching vintage bikes from the 1970s to the 1990s. Daily prices run as low as €11 for a basic single-speed up to €45 for the extremely rare Masi Prestige fixie. No bike tours here, but they will give you a map directing you to Kreuzberg, Schöneberg and other locales beyond the Brandenburg Gate. JF Pappellallee 10, Prenzlauer Berg. Mon-Sun 10-13, Entering the LautLos showroom feels like visiting an android’s parking garage – from futuristic part-human, part-electric-powered hybrid Pedelecs to fully fledged e-bikes, lazy pedallers are able to choose from a fleet of battery-driven vehicles while retaining their cycling street cred. True to the name (“silent”), the discreet whirring of Lautlos’ bikes promises a stealthy, largely effortless commute that is both a green and a slick transport alternative. But what you save environmentally you might spend in real currency: €9-20 per hour, or €109 a month. For all vehicles except the more labour-intensive Pedelec you will also require a driver’s license. GS       Wilhelmstr. 93, Mitte. Mon 9-18, Tue-Fri 9-20, Sat 11-16, Too broke for a flashy bike? Try your luck with Bikesurf, a free service started last year by Irish expat Graham Pope. Simply sign up via Google Calendar, receive an email with a location and lock combination, then pick up your new wheels and enjoy for up to a week. The catch? Due to high demand and a small fleet (mostly donations from onetime Berliners who left town for less Fahrrad-friendly climes) bikes aren’t always easy to come by. Unsurprisingly, Pope and his fellow organisers are Couchsurfing/beWelcome acolytes, so send them a link to your profile to earn their trust and get in the fast lane. RG Originally published in Issue #117, June 2013