I have been trying to register online for TFL’s Barclays Cycle Hire – become a member, but have so far been unsuccessful because the site is just CRAP.  It doesn’t tell you which fields are mandatory until the very end, nor does it explain which fields are the problem after the validation has taken place.  All one gets is a ridiculous message that gives no clues to the actual problem:

Please check the following and try again.
Sorry, we are having a problem with your request. Please try again, or call 0845 026 3630 for help

To become a Member of Barclays Cycle Hire, you need to:

  • Be at least 18 years of age (check – I am older than 18).
  • Buy cycle access (24-hour, seven-day or annual) – (check I want 24-hour access).
  • Have a UK postal address which matches your billing address (check – I live in the UK and have a physical home and billing address).
  • Agree to the terms & conditions of Barclays Cycle Hire which include fees for late, non-returned and damaged cycles (check – I ticked the two boxes).

Strangely nowhere on the form does it prompt you for your date of birth, so how the hell can age be validated, nor does it ask which cycle access I want? I suspect if I got past the initial bullsh*t form it would ask me for my credit / debit card details, where my age would be validated.

So after six tries I am giving up. TFL have lost out. There is no way I am wasting my hard earned money on a 0845 number because on principal I should be able to sign up without any hassle via the website. I sign up to hundreds of online services a year and have very little hassle and most good web sites will at least tell you which fields have not been filled in correctly or show you the mandatory fields of entry.