GBFS & Open Data


The General Bikeshare Feed Specification, known as GBFS, is the open data standard for shared micromobility. GBFS makes real-time data feeds in a uniform format publicly available online, with an emphasis on findability.

About GBFS

Under NABSA’s leadership, the General Bikeshare Feed Specification (GBFS) Version 1 was developed by a team of bikeshare system owners and operators, application developers, and technology vendors. Over 230 bikeshare and scooter systems worldwide have adopted the GBFS open data standard since its release in November 2015.

In 2019, NABSA partnered with MobilityData to coordinate the GBFS community to change processes to meet evolving industry needs, and we continue to partner on the effort. GBFS Version 2 was released in March 2020. Improvements include micromobility provider integration into mobility apps and stronger rider privacy.

GBFS is intended as a specification for real-time, read-only data – any data being written back into individual bikeshare systems are excluded from this spec. The specification has been designed with the following concepts in mind:

  • Provide the status of the system at this moment
  • Do not provide information whose primary purpose is historical
  • The data in the specification is intended for consumption by clients intending to provide real-time (or semi-real-time) transit advice and is designed as such.

GBFS Data Specs on Github
GBFS integration into the OneBusAway app.

How is GBFS different from MDS?
  • GBFS focuses on data for the end user, while MDS is used by regulators for management of free-floating mobility devices in the public right of way
  • GBFS focuses on publicly available, real-time data, while MDS focuses on historical data
  • GBFS is currently specific to micromobility, while MDS is intended to include any Mobility As A Service device
  • GBFS is a requirement within the Provider feed of MDS
  • Learn more about the relationship between GBFS and MDS here.

Learn More about GBFS

GBFS Enhancements and Good Practice Webinar

In this webinar, we discussed what GBFS is, what it is good for, how best to use and engage with it, and all of the enhancements that we’ve been working on that you can expect moving forward in 2020. The video includes Spanish subtitles.

MDS and Emerging Dockless Data Standardization Webinar

This webinar explains what MDS is, why it was created, and how it compliments the GBFS standard. Two cities at the forefront of dockless data collection told members how they are doing it, and what’s being done about user privacy.

This webinar requires a NABSA Member Center Account. Not a NABSA member? Consider joining to gain access to this and hundreds of other resources. Learn more about NABSA membership.

View the Webinar

Bikeshare Data Sharing
Webinar

This webinar explored how open data can make bikeshare services more transparent, effective and user-friendly.  We discussed how open data requirements can both increase ridership and aid cities in monitoring and policy enforcement.

This webinar requires a NABSA Member Center Account. Not a NABSA member? Consider joining to gain access to this and hundreds of other resources. Learn more about NABSA membership.

View the Webinar

GBFS in Action


The potential for real-time open data information through the GBFS feed has led to some incredible projects since its launch. For example, in October 2017, Google’s Summer of Code program sponsored the addition of bikeshare to the open-source OneBusAway app, using GBFS.

Do you have a project you would like us to feature? Email destinie@nabsa.net.

Check out this great resource on GBFS and open APIs by Transit

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