The Bixi is going international.

Montreal's homegrown bike-share program is rolling out in the streets of Boston and London.

As many as 6,000 of the award-winning bikes and 400 docking stations will hit the U.K. capital by 2010.

Boston's Bixi network will start with 2,500 bikes with the possibility of growing to 5,000.

Both deals mean about 40 new jobs for Montreal between manufacturing the products locally and the call centre.

"The call centre will be expanded, as we will be handling all the calls that will be coming in from the Boston area. We will then be dispatching all the information from Montreal," said Roger Plamondon, chairman of the Public Bike System Co.

Meanwhile, tourists in Montreal are getting a taste of the bikes before they go international - and they're not always impressed.

"This is the third one we've used today and it's not working. We called customer service," said Rosa Santos, a Spanish tourist. When asked if she was disappointed, she said, "Of course because I want a bike and it's impossible to make it work."

Other tourists said the frustrations were only minor, and that the bike-sharing system was still worth their while.

"At one of the stations close to McGill, I tried to put my bike in and it didn't give me a green light," said Kevin Frankola from Pittsburgh. "I had to do four tries before the green light went off - but I do like the system a lot because you get to see a lot more of the city."

Broken bikes and docks have been a common occurrence among the bikes, something Montreal Mayor Gerald Tremblay acknowledges, and sees as a learning experience before shipping them off to Boston and London.

"The fact that we're going through an adaptation process is only beneficial for London and Boston... we're still experiencing those minor problems and as a result of that we are only improving the quality of services," said Tremblay.

"The system will never be perfect, no system will," said Plamondon, but he adds: "Everything is moving in the right direction."