Citi Bike, New York's popular bike share program has seen immense growth in it’s membership over the past few years. Since the beginning of the program the small blue keys used to unlock to ubiquitous blue bikes on many New York street corners, had been sent in a nondescript envelope, with minimal instructions that had left many riders confused with how to register them. Valuable gift codes were being accidentally discarded and the system created many pain points in the activation process.

The Marketing team decided to reexamine the experience from the very beginning: keep the same key and send it in a more appealing package with much clearer directions that would not be in danger of getting lost or ignored.

The new packaging, was inspired by the energy of riding a bike, includes a telescoping mechanism that opens forward, revealing the Citi Bike key. We chose bright colors, friendly typography and simple messaging to make the user experience easy and delightful. Characters were illustrated in a series of figures that highlight the diversity and excitement of Citi Bike's ridership. In this way, we achieve the vitality and spirit of a growing company with a environmentally friendly and healthy mission-- to get people riding.

Many people see urban biking as an intimidating endeavor. With a welcoming message that highlights the ease of bike share and an invaluable product that's quickly been embedded into the city's culture, Citi Bike has contributed to the idea that bike share is an accessible, inclusive and affordable way to get around New York.

© Rachel Eck 2019
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