E-scooter trial in Birmingham and the West Midlands
The e-scooter trial was launched in Birmingham in September 2020, after the Department for Transport announced that e-scooter trials would be allowed to take place across the country as part of a package of measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The e-scooter operator Voi was selected as the sole operator in the West Midlands. Voi e-scooters are also available on the University of Warwick campus and in Dudley. The trial areas are being expanded, so maps showing the latest trial boundaries are available upon request by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also see where e-scooters are available near you on the Voi mobile application (app).
To use a Voi e-scooter you need to download the Voi app on your phone and register with your personal and bank details. The app requires proof of a valid driving licence, and matches the picture on it with your face before you are allowed to start a ride. The map function on the app shows where e-scooters are available. The app allows you to start your ride by scanning the QR code on the Voi e-scooter, and to end your ride when you have reached your destination.
The map on the Voi website and app shows the slow virtual speed zones, no parking zones, no ride zones, and dedicated parking areas. Riders can end their ride anywhere but are encouraged to park in the dedicated parking areas shown on the map. However, in the centre of Birmingham it is mandatory to park in the dedicated parking areas. Voi e-scooter parking racks have been installed to help keep parked e-scooters tidy.
Payment for your ride is taken automatically from your bank account. Voi offers a pay-as-you-go option, and discounted monthly subscriptions for students, NHS and Emergency Service workers, and low-income groups. More information about discounts can be found on the voi website.