Lime e-scooters are hugely popular with Aucklanders but it turns out they are also popular among retailers.

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Retailers located in and around downtown Auckland and those in wider CBD area say e-scooters have increased foot traffic to their stores resulting in more sales, following the San Francisco-based company's launch into the market in October.

Heart of the City chief executive Viv Beck said business it had surveyed had commented on an increase in the numbers of customers arriving by e-scooter.


Beck said some businesses had noticed an increase in usual sales, other had said their usual customer base had diversified.

Shoppers in the city had also been requesting "scooter parking" adjacent or even inside their business, she said.

"We saw this ourselves the other day - a customer parked a scooter just inside the door while they whipped into the store and bought something before jumping back on their scooter and heading off again with their shopping bag," Beck said.

"We even heard from a business about a customer coming into the city from Parnell to buy something during their lunch break. A number told us their staff use them to get to meetings, or even as one business said 'turn up to work on time'."

Mark Wilde, owner of the Auckland Watch Company, told the Herald some of his customers which worked in Wynyard Quarter had jumped on a scooter to come into the store.

"I can see an advantage of them, it does help people get around from further away than they would consider walking," Wilde said.

He said he had not noticed an "excessive increase" to trade or people in the store.

"It's hard to say - we get a customer every five, 10 minutes."


Long term, Wilde said he believed retail and other businesses would benefit from the seeming e-scooter craze, and would be replacement for cars in Auckland CBD.

The Herald has also frequently seen e-scooter riders ask door attendants and retail staff if they can keep an eye on their scooter or park inside the store.

Wilde said dedicated e-scooter parking would be beneficial for retailers in the area.

Aside from positive flow-on effects of the scooters being scattered throughout the city, retailers have also flagged concerns about safety - mainly people driving too fast - and logistical issues such as where they can be rode, Beck said.

"These need to be ironed out so everyone can feel safe. But overall we get the sense that [there are] benefits of new transport options like e-scooters."