"Bike Aboard" NJTransitWe have said it before and we’ll say it again: bikes and transit just seem to be made for each other. And now NJ Transit has made this exceptional relationship even stronger with their newly revised "Bike Aboard" program!
Over the past year, NJ Transit and bike advocates from around the state have been meeting to discuss their policy regarding bikes boarding their trains. Prior to this new announcement, NJ Transit’s policy limited riders to boarding with their bikes onto open rail cars only.
This policy discouraged many weekend recreational riders and commuters by not only limiting the amount of bikes that can board rail cars to merely two bikes per car but also left riders in the precarious situation of being escorted off the train if the car is overcrowded. However with last week’s announcement, weekend recreational and commuter riders can celebrate as this new policy vastly expands the amount of bicycles that can board weekend rail cars.
As of Saturday, August 11th, NJ Transit crew members are now able to open unused rail cars to bike riders who wish to take their bicycles on board with them.
This policy designates all weekend trains running on rail service to and from Hoboken Terminal as bike trains and will accommodate up to 12 bicycles per train! What’s more this new policy does not require preregistration or permits, and there is no additional charge for bringing bicycles onboard trains. However larger groups can be accommodated with advance reservations by calling NJ Transit’s Group Sales Department at 973-491-7220.
Unfortunately this policy does fall short for rail lines that end or begin in New York City. For these lines, the rules that guided NJ Transit’s former policy remain; only 2 bicycles are allowed on each single-level rail car and up to 8 bicycles on each multilevel rail car (subject to crowding or the accessibility needs of other customers). Additionally bicycles cannot board trains that end in New York between 9a.m. – 12 noon and trains originating in New York between 5p.m. – 8p.m.
Starting in October, NJ Transit will reprint all rail schedules to clearly indicate designated bike trains with a special bicycle icon near the train number. If you, your company or your organization would like printed hard copies of these timetables as well as a convenient display stand to keep them neat and organized for your friends, coworkers, customers or employees please visit www.TransOptions.org/Brochures.
In addition, NJ TRANSIT has implemented a streamlined internal process for resolving issues about bike access in real time when customers contact the Transit Information Center at 973-275-5555 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. daily, when the agency provides live operator assistance.
So why wait? Gather up your friends and family or plan a day for yourself to explore some of New Jersey’s great bicycle paths without having to burn an ounce of gasoline! Our Map It tool on TransOptions.org is the one place where you can layer all of New Jersey’s bike paths, NJ State bicycle tours and train stations.