Citi Bike is raising its annual membership rate from $149 to $155 starting next month, it announced Tuesday.
The bike-share program's parent company Motivate attributed that 4 percent price increase to the rising operational costs of a program that introduced more bikes and docking stations and a revamped app over the past year.
The March 1 price hike is peanuts compared to the one that hit riders in October 2014, when an investment group including executives at Equinox and the real estate firm Related Companies acquired Citi Bike's parent company — then called Alta Bicycle Share — and the cost of annual memberships jumped from $95 to $149.
NYC Housing Authority residents will still receive discounted memberships at the rate of $60 a year, plus tax.
But, for the first time, all Citi Bike members won't have to pay the lump sum when they first sign up. Annual members will now have the option of paying $14.95 monthly installments, or $5 installments in the case of NYCHA residents.
For cyclists considering signing up for the first time, their IDNYC cards will get them a 15 percent discount on their first year of membership.
Over the past year, Citi Bike updated its software to ensure that docking stations stay online consistently, overhauled its app to display the availability of bikes more accurately, added 2,400 redesigned bikes to its fleet and installed 139 new stations in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens.
Citi Bike noted that its riders took over 10 million trips in 2015.