Opening date: 16/03/2021


Closing date: 01/05/2026


Updated 1 July 2024.

Voi is now the sole provider of rental e-scooters and e-bikes in Portsmouth, as well as in Southampton and on the Isle of Wight, providing sustainable ways to travel for all those who live, work, or study in our region.

To be eligible to ride a Voi rental e-scooter, you will need to be aged 18 or over and hold at least a provisional driving licence, which you will be asked to scan before your first ride.

To be eligible to ride a Voi e-bike, users must be aged at least 16.

The previous docks used for Beryl bikes were transferred to Voi, to maximise the amount of parking bays available to users. They will be rebranded, but don’t hesitate to use them in the meantime – they fit Voi’s rental e-scooters just as well as their e-bikes, and help keep our footways tidy and clutter-free for people using the pavement.

Voi plans to upgrade its rental e-scooter fleet in early 2025, introducing its latest model. which offers several industry-leading features: their batteries are interchangeable between vehicle types, their kickstands can withstand wind speeds of up to 30 knots, and their geo-location is accurate to 10cm.

A Voi e-scooter and e-bike in Portsmouth

Top tips for a safe ride

  • Only ride on roads, cycle paths and shared-use paths
  • Never ride on pavements that are only for walking
  • Wear a helmet – it’s not required but it’s safer
  • Always follow the Highway Code
  • Never drink and ride
  • Never ride with more than one person on the rental e-scooter or e-bike
  • Never let someone else use the rental e-scooter or e-bike during your ride
  • Before your first ride, complete Voi’s RideSafe Academy. You’ll also be rewarded with a code for a free 30-minute ride!

To get started, download the free Breeze app on Google Play (Android) or the App Store (iPhone). You can also organise your travel on a variety of public transport. Rental e-scooters and e-bikes can alternatively be accessed through the Voi app. For more information, read the frequently asked questions below or visit the Voi website.

If you see someone riding a Voi e-scooter or e-bike dangerously, please report to Voi, noting the time, location, and the registration number (on rental-scooters only) if possible.

Portsmouth’s rental e-scooter scheme forms an approved part of the Department for Transport’s national trial. Privately-owned e-scooters remain illegal, except on private land and with the landowner’s permission.

Map of Voi rental e-scooter and e-bike bays

You can see a map of all locations where you can rent a Voi e-scooter or e-bike here, or in the Voi app.

Frequently asked questions

How do I rent and ride an e-scooter or e-bike?

To be eligible to ride a Voi e-scooter, users must be 18 years old or over, and have at least a provisional driving licence, which must be scanned through to the Voi app when a rider rents their first e-scooter.

 

To rent an e-bike, no licence is required, and users must be 16 years old or over. However, the e-bike rental age will initially be 18, as Voi upgrades its app to enable a different minimum age for both rental e-scooters and e-bikes. This is expected to be completed in August 2024.

 

For added safety, riders are encouraged to wear a helmet and take part in the Ridelikevoila training.

 

To get started, download the free Breeze app on Google Play (Android) or the App Store (iPhone). You’ll also be able to organise your travel on a variety of public transport. For more information, please visit the Voi website.

 

To rent either an e-scooter or e-bike:

 

  1. Download either the Breeze or Voi apps.
  2. Create an account and add a payment method.
  3. Upload your driving licence details (e-scooters only, not needed for e-bikes)
  4. Take a short safety quiz.
  5. Find a nearby e-scooter or e-bike on the in-app map.
  6. Scan the QR code to unlock.
  7. For e-bikes: Adjust the saddle to the correct height and release the kickstand.
  8. Enjoy your ride, following local regulations.
  9. End your ride in the app and park correctly.

 

For e-bikes specifically:

 

  • The electric motor kicks in once you start pedalling.
  • The bikes have two gears which change automatically.

 

You can watch this video to see how to ride an e-bike.

How much does it cost to ride a rental e-scooter or e-bike?

Both rental e-scooters and e-bikes cost £0.99 to unlock and then 18p per minute of usage. Alternatively, you can buy:

 

  • A day pass for £10 (maximum 120 minutes)
  • A month pass for £39.99 (300 minutes) or £54.99 (750 minutes)
  • A monthly Free Unlock Pass for £4.99 per month

 

You may be charged a small temporary pre-ride fee before you take your ride. More information about this is here.

 

Voi offers discounts for groups including NHS staff, military personnel, students, over 65s, disabled people, and people on a low income. Details are available on Voi’s website.

What is a Free Unlock Pass?

A Free Unlock Pass monthly subscription where regular users pay a fixed monthly fee (usually £4.99) to avoid paying the £0.99 unlock fee for each ride. Riders get unlimited free unlocks and only pay the per-minute rate (£0.18/min) for their rides.

 

The pass automatically renews each month, but users can cancel at any time. In the Voi app, press the “Get a Voi Pass” button or select Voi Pass from the menu to see this and other available passes.

Where can I ride e-scooters and e-bikes?

Both can be used on roads, cycle paths, and shared-use paths within Portsmouth, Southampton and on the Isle of Wight. There are no-ride zones and slow-speed zones in some areas. Neither can be used on pavements where people walk. Please follow the rules of the road and be considerate to other road users and pedestrians.

 

You can only ride within a geo-fenced area, which Voi has agreed with the council. You can see the boundaries of this area on the Breeze and Voi apps.

 

Currently, no-ride zones and slow-speed zones are the same for e-bikes and e-scooters, but this is temporary. In the future, some zones will be different – check the Breeze app for updates.

 

Please remember that rental e-scooters and rental e-bikes cannot be used on pavements where people walk, unless it is a clearly marked, shared-use path.

 

How do I find and park rental e-scooters and e-bikes?

You can use the Breeze and Voi in-app maps to locate parking bays across the area. All journeys must start and end at these designated areas. If the parking bay is at its maximum capacity, you’ll need to find another nearby which has space available.

 

You must take and submit an ‘end of ride photo’ of your parked e-scooter or e-bike at the end of each ride. Photos are reviewed daily by Voi, and action is taken if riders do not comply with the safe parking guidelines.

 

Read more in Voi’s guide to parking

 

If you see any unsafe parking or abandoned e-scooters take a note of the e-scooter’s number plate and the time and report to Voi.

Can I suggest a location for a new rental e-scooter rack?

Yes, you can submit a request for a new parking spot through Voi’s website.

 

Your request will be reviewed by Voi and any suitable locations will be discussed and considered by the council. Please note, all parking spots on public footways in Portsmouth will need enough space to fit a rack plus 1.8m of space for people to get around them.

How fast can the vehicles go?

Rental-bikes are limited to 15.5 mph, while rental e-scooters are limited to 12.5 mph. There are “go-slow” zones where speed is limited to either 8 mph or 5 mph.

 

We’ve worked with Voi to limit the speed of rental e-scooters to 12.5 mph and rental e-bikes to 15.5 mph, with set boundaries in certain areas in the city. The speed limit of Portsmouth’s rental e-scooters is below the 15.5 mph cap set for the government trial but still allows scooters to mix safely with other traffic.

 

If a rider enters a slow-ride or no-ride zone, the rental e-scooter will automatically slow or stop, depending on the zone type, thanks to Voi’s geofencing technology. Users can locate slow-ride or no-ride zones within their app.

 

You’re likely to find slow-ride zones within busy areas where a lot of people are walking or there’s a high volume of motor traffic, for instance, in Palmerston Road South and Osborne Road.

In other areas, for example, Guildhall Square, no-ride zones are in place to automatically slow the vehicle to a stop.

Are there any rules about riding whilst being under the influence of drink or drugs?

Yes, you should never ride rental e-scooters or e-bikes under the influence of drink or drugs. 

 

Voi rental e-scooters are classified as motor vehicles. If a rider is stopped and found to be under the influence of drink, drugs or other substances they will be in violation of Voi’s terms of use.

 

More importantly they will be subject to the law in the same way as any vehicle driver and could face imprisonment, a driving ban and a fine if found guilty of drink-riding. Find out more about drink-driving penalties.

Are private e-scooters allowed as part of the trial?

No, private e-scooters are not part of the trial and remain illegal to use on public roads, pavements, and spaces. Only Voi rental e-scooters are permitted for the trial.

When can I ride a rental e-scooter or e-bike

In Portsmouth, you can ride either a rental e-scooter or e-bike between 4am and 10pm. The e-bike service will be available 24/7 again when Voi completes the upgrade to its app to allow different operating hours. This is expected to be in August 2024.

How far can Voi e-scooter and e-bikes go on a single charge?

Under normal conditions, rental e-scooters and e-bikes can travel for about 100 km (62 miles) from a 100% charge. You can check the battery percentage in the Breeze or Voi apps, or on the dashboard (e-bike only). The e-bike dashboard displays five bars representing 100%, 80%, 60%, 40%, and 20% charge remaining. You will get a warning if the battery is approaching low charge.

Can I hire a rental e-scooter or e-bike for a long ride?

You can hire an e-bike or e-scooter for a long ride within the geofenced area, but you cannot take it for a ride outside that area. It would be most economical to buy a day pass for a long ride which gives you 120 minutes for £10.

Can I take rental e-scooters or e-bikes on public transport?

No, you cannot take Voi e-scooters or e-bikes on buses, trains, or ferries.

Can I ride a rental e-scooter or e-bike without an app?

No. You need the Breeze or Voi apps to unlock the bike. The wheels will not turn unless the bike is unlocked.

What do I do if there’s a problem with my e-scooter or e-bike?

Problems with vehicles can be reported through the Breeze and Voi apps, or by emailing support@voiapp.com.

What regulations do rental e-scooters and e-bikes follow?

All rental e-scooters and e-bikes are subject to normal road rules.

Key points:

 

  • Follow traffic rules
  • Do not ride on pavements (except shared-use paths)
  • Only one person per vehicle
  • Do not ride under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Only park in designated areas

Are riders insured when renting an e-scooter or e-bike from Voi?

Yes, the Department of Transport (DfT) requires third party liability insurance, and this is included in the rental price for all trips. Please contact Voi if you have an accident on 07476 550190. You can check Voi’s T&Cs here.

Do I need to wear a helmet?

Wearing a helmet is recommended. Voi offers incentives for helmet use through their “helmet selfie” feature.

How does Voi ensure rider safety?

Voi prioritises safety through:

 

  • Rider education and training via the RideSafe Academy
  • In-app safety tips and social media campaigns
  • Collaboration with police and local councils
  • Action against riders who disregard rules (warnings, fines, bans)
  • Geofencing technology to enforce no-ride and slow-speed zones
  • Regular maintenance and safety checks on vehicles

 

You can sign up for free safety webinars with Voi at voi.com/uk-ride-safe-webinar

What will Voi do to keep people with sight loss safe?

Voi works closely, at both a national and local level, with associations representing people with sight loss, including the RNIB, Guide Dogs, Sight Loss Councils and the Thomas Pocklington trust, to ensure they understand the impact of their vehicles on disabled people.

 

Voi staff have undertaken pan disability awareness training. Voi is a member of the Solent Micromobility Equalities Forum, where local equalities groups can voice their concerns and Voi can demonstrate what they are doing to minimise equalities impacts of its scheme.

How can people with sight loss avoid Voi rental e-scooters and e-bikes on paths?

Vehicles should always be returned to parking bays once a rider has finished their journey, meaning that they should not be abandoned on paths and potentially obstructing pavements, especially for people with sight loss.

 

Voi has also partnered with the Lazarillo app, which uses real time voice messages to guide people with sight loss. Users will receive real-time information on where Voi vehicles are parked, so that they don’t risk colliding with any of them. In addition, Lazarillo’s subscribers can report any poorly parked vehicles directly to Voi using an ‘alert’ facility in the app. Find out more here.

Do I have to pass a test before I can ride a rental e-scooter or e-bike?

No, but Voi advises you to complete safety training in its app and its online traffic school, RideSafe Academy. You can sign up for free safety webinars with Voi at voi.com/uk-ride-safe-webinar

How can I report misused, badly parked or abandoned vehicles?

You can report issues through Voi’s online form at Report a Voi. You can also email them at support@voiapp.io or call the 24-hour customer service helpline on 07476 550190. If possible, include the vehicle’s number plate (if an e-scooter), location, time, and date.

 

Riders must not:

 

  • Leave rental e-scooters or e-bikes lying on the ground
  • Obstruct the pavement
  • Cause an obstacle to other road or pavement users

 

An educational warning message will be sent first, followed by a £25.00 fine if the rider ignores the rules for parking in an approved space for a second time.

 

Voi takes riding safely and legally very seriously. If Voi receives a confirmed report of an offence from the police, or via their customer service support centre, then Voi will always seek to take action against the rider responsible, such as issuing a warning or permanently removing the rider from the service. To do this, Voi will ask the police for supporting information, including the date, time, and place of the offence and, if possible, the e-scooter’s number plate.

What should I do if I have an accident?

Ensure your safety first. Contact the police (101) or emergency services (999) if needed. Then contact Voi via support@voiapp.io or their 24-hour helpline (07476 550190) with incident details and the police report number.

Is it safe to ride at night?

Yes, both rental e-scooters and e-bikes have bright front and back lights. E-bikes also have a rear brake light. We advise you to wear reflective clothing when it’s dark for extra visibility.

Is it safe to ride in any weather?

In extreme weather conditions such as high winds, snow, and ice, Voi may put the vehicles out of service. You should adjust your speed to the weather conditions and remember to allow extra time for braking in wet and icy conditions.

Can I reserve a rental e-scooter or e-bike?

Yes, you can reserve a rental e-scooter or e-bike for 15 minutes free of charge using the Voi app.

How are e-scooters and e-bikes maintained and charged?

Voi conducts regular maintenance checks and uses swappable batteries. Batteries are monitored remotely and swapped when low. They are taken to the Voi warehouse where they are checked for faults and charged in closely monitored conditions to minimise fire risk. You can find out more about this here.

What is the Solent FTZ rental e-scooter and e-bike scheme?

In November 2020, Solent Transport launched the regional electric scooter (e-scooter) rental trial, funded by the Department for Transport’s (DfT) Future Transport Zone programme. The trial covers the Isle of Wight, Southampton and Portsmouth with the trial period extended to May 2026. As of October 2022, electric bikes (e-bikes) were added to the scheme regionally – as e-bikes are already legal, they are not being trialled.

Who operates the rental e-scooter and e-bike schemes?

Voi has been selected to operate both schemes, replacing the previous Beryl services in Portsmouth, Southampton, and on the Isle of Wight. Voi has already been operating e-scooters in Southampton and Portsmouth since March 2021.

Why is the rental e-scooter trial taking place?

The trial forms part of a national approach to building a more sustainable travel network. These vehicles offer a safe transport option and often replace short car journeys, help improve air quality, and reduce traffic congestion.

How is the rental e-scooter trial being evaluated?

Portsmouth City Council and Solent Transport evaluate the trial. The Department for Transport (DfT) is also evaluating all the schemes separately through its own monitoring and evaluation exercise.

What are the main benefits of these schemes?

There are a several benefits to the schemes, including:

  • Supporting short commuter journeys
  • Providing convenient, affordable, and flexible travel for point-to-point journeys, or for the first or last mile to public transport
  • Lowering environmental footprint, with huge potential to improve air quality and reduce climate change
  • Reducing traffic congestion
  • Providing a green, carbon-neutral transportation solution to lower the cities’ emissions and improve air quality.
  • Economic benefits by improving the efficiency of road use. More information is available in Voi’s sustainability report.

What is the difference between Voi rental e-scooters and privately owned e-scooters?

Currently, only rental e-scooters can be legally used on public roads, cycle lanes and shared cycle and footpaths. Portsmouth’s scheme forms an approved part of the Department for Transport’s national trial. Privately-owned e-scooters remain illegal, except on private land and with the landowner’s permission.

 

Voi rental e-scooters Private e-scooters
Legal on public roads ✔️ ✖️
Insured ✔️ ✖️
Speed limited ✔️ ✖️
Geo-fenced ✔️ ✖️
Can be reported ✔️ To police directly
Age limited ✔️ ✖️
Driving licence required ✔️ ✖️
Enforced parking ✔️ ✖️
Mandatory training ✔️ ✖️
Regular maintenance ✔️ ✖️

 

Voi rental e-scooters are insured, and all users must be aged 18 or over and have a valid driving licence. As private e-scooters are illegal on public roads, they don’t have any such requirements.

 

Before a user can rent a Voi e-scooter for the first time, they must complete in-app training on safe and considerate riding. Further training is also available from Voi in regular online webinars and in-person safety events, with users encouraged to attend by offers of free helmets and free minutes.

 

Voi’s rental e-scooters must meet Department for Transport standards, so they are subject to a rigorous maintenance routine, including their batteries, to ensure they can be safely used on the road and do not put the rider or anyone else at risk.

 

Portsmouth’s e-scooter rental scheme has a mandatory in-app reaction test during evening hours at weekends, and at major events, like Victorious Festival. Users must pass the reaction test to rent an e-scooter, helping to enforce Voi’s strict position that users must never ride while under the influence of drink or drugs.

 

Voi rental e-scooters are automatically limited to 12.5mph, or slower in designated “go slow zones”. This means they can only be ridden and parked in approved areas, and fines are issued to those who do not park in a designated bay.