Rule-breaking Mobike parkers now face fines

Mobike users will pay 5 yuan (70 US cents) for parking bikes in prohibited spots if they keep ignoring warnings from the company.

Mobike users who park bikes at certain prohibited spots will be charged money through the app, the shared bike company said on Wednesday.

This feature is on top of the one introduced in June which marks such spots gray and sends reminders to users when users try to park bikes there. Those who violate the rules will lose points and see a decline in their credit rating on the app, while repeat offenders risk being banned from using Mobike altogether.

The company said the illegal parking rate has dropped 30 percent in the last two months, while "gray areas" now include Wujiaochang, areas near the site of the China International Import Expo, and downtown locations within the Inner Ring Road.

The new feature will initially cover seven spots in Pudong's Lujiazui and the National Exhibition and Convention Center.

Users will be exempt from the illegal parking charge the first time, but after that they will be charged 5 yuan (70 US cents), the company said.

If a user ignores the warning for charging which pops up in the app, the money will be deducted from their deposit right away, but there are win-win incentives which mean the user can have the 'fine' returned. If they take another Mobike from a prohibited parking area after a short period of time and return it to a recommended parking spot, the company will refund the deducted funds.

Zhu Qian, an executive of Mobike, said users will be charged because their illegal parking costs the company which has to eventually remove the illegally parked bikes.

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