Hello and welcome to the second in a series of interviews with the most important people we have in our business and team - the riders.
Every other month we sit down and talk to a different exceptional rider about their experiences on the road, likes and dislikes, and any insights they might have along the way.
It's a chance to get to know who exactly it is that makes Ryde, Ryde.
So, without further ado, please meet Markos. Markos has been working with Ryde for 9 months and when he started, it was only his second job with a courier company in the UK (he also had been working for a 10-minute grocery delivery company). He has now worked with even more companies across the industry through Ryde and he mainly rides e-bikes.
We sat down with Markos on the 1st of December 2021 and spoke all things riding.
Hi Markos, thanks for agreeing to have a chat with me. My first question for you is how did you start working as a bike courier? How did you find yourself working for Ryde?
I moved to London last year in the middle of the pandemic. It was October so I was trying to settle myself in London under these new circumstances. After Christmas I wanted to find myself a job as I was still a student studying civil engineering. I had moved before finishing my thesis for my diploma and I was looking for work in hospitality as I already had experience in this as a cook, waiter, bar man etc. But, due to the pandemic everything was closed in the lockdown! So, I found Ryde online – and that’s how I applied. I already had the bike, I like cycling around London, I like moving around, exercising. It was like combining both of them. As a hobby and a way to have some money to spare.
And was Ryde the first company you started working with, or had you worked with any others?
No, I started with another company. I was on 0 hours and then I found Ryde. That’s how I started using your app. I have gone on to work with Gorillas through Ryde. I found I was having more shifts being offered and so made arrangements to use it more. It completed my work/life schedule.
So, you had a bike when you started, but working with Gorillas do you use their e-bikes?
Yeah, they’re offering their own equipment. I have actually just received some emails that Ryde is offering work riding through the city on mopeds without any deliveries for another company. I think I’m considering getting a CBT license for that as it sounds really interesting as well. Seems like it would pay for itself.
It seems like you prefer doing shift work to on-demand work. What do you see the benefits of shift work as being?
Yes I do, mainly just trying to get a fixed schedule. Get a few days a week, have a weekend off, do extra work when I need more money, relax when I can afford it. It’s the most appropriate type of job for a student or somebody who doesn’t want to get a fixed schedule in the week but needs some money to put aside or cover expenses. You can guarantee your schedule or cover your needs.
And what do you see as the benefits of this job overall?
Ok, well firstly the traffic! I actually think people do care about riders in London.There are designated lanes for riders. Bike lanes. That gives me a sense of security when I’m riding around the city. I can feel safe doing my work. Also the provided equipment helps.
I used to work in hospitality in Greece and I got accustomed to greeting people. So, I like getting in touch with customers and clients. I like greeting them at the door. Some of them tip me – give me actual coins at the door – which is a nice touch. Really, I wouldn’t say I have any bad experiences with Ryde, no not at all, not from the company or the customers themselves.
What would you say has been the most challenging for you in this job?
I would say the weather. As it’s London. Sometimes during the late hours, if it’s raining or if it’s windy. But still, if you can be covered with the appropriate equipment, it’s all ok.
So, really final question to wrap it up, a question we want to end each interview with – if you could travel to any country you’ve not been to before, which would it be?
I think The Netherlands probably, because they do have the same bike friendly mentality. I can go round riding – I like riding my bike. Yeah I haven’t been there, and I’ve always wanted to visit. I like travelling a lot. Actually, I was in Scotland this weekend doing a road trip with my flatmate and some friends. It was really nice but a bit cold. More cold than London for sure. But yes, my answer is Netherlands.
Ok great! Thanks so much Markos, I’ve really enjoyed talking to you and thanks again!
Over already! Ok, thank you – you too!