They’re the bikes that aim to transform  how we travel around Croydon.

But are they costing us too much?

Some borough councillors think so – and they’re trying to see a discount introduced for some users.

Last month,  200 bright green electric bikes arrived in Croydon as part of a year-long trial and now the Lime e-bikes can be seen all over the borough.

As the bikes are electric they are more expensive than other dockless bike hire providers, costing £1 to unlock and 15p per minute to ride.

This means for bike journeys lasting more than three minutes, you’ll be forking out more than you would for a £1.50 bus fare.

But Croydon Council, along with other local authorities in the capital, have been speaking to Lime about the potential for discounts for those on low incomes.

At a meeting of the council’s cycle forum, members discussed the dockless bike hire scheme.

Head of transport Ian Plowright said: “The bike hire is quite expensive. What we are doing is trying to negotiate a reduced hire charge for people on low incomes.

“It is not a council scheme but we are one of a number of local authorities asking for them to provide a lower charge.

“Hopefully they will be able to have some way of deciding whether a user meets certain income criteria and then offer them that lower cost rate.”

But Councillor Simon Brew was not sure that it would be easy to create a criteria of those on low income and wondered whether pensioners would also be offered cut price rides.

And Councillor Clive Fraser thought that the price might naturally go down once more people start using the bikes and if other providers enter the market.

Councillor Muhammad Ali said that although the council could not stop Lime coming into the borough, it was keen to work with the company to promote use of the service.

“We couldn’t stop them but the council decided to work out some sort of agreement to learn from the mistakes of previous dockless bikes,” he said.

“While some journeys would be cheaper on the bus, this gives more access to areas that the bus wouldn’t and you can go door to door.”

How do the bikes work?

Each bike is fitted with GPS, locks, a bell and front and rear lights and reflectors.

An app is used to unlock the bike and pay for rides. It also tells you how many more miles are left in the battery.

Lime is able to collect and redistribute the bikes to key locations when it’s needed.

And if Croydon Council ends up having to move bikes which are in the way, Lime will reimburse them for the cost.

To stop high footfall areas getting clogged up, some can be excluded from the scheme. In Croydon bikes are not supposed to be parked in busy North End.

The council’s Cycle Forum met at Croydon Town Hall on Tuesday, June 4.