- Future Cars
Get a Lyft with ride sharing
What does the company Lyft offer?
When you think of transportation, the first option that comes to mind is probably owning and driving your own vehicle. Sure it is costly, adding up auto insurance coverage, vehicle maintenance and fuel are just a few of the basic expenses for car ownership. And most of the traffic that you see on the road is filled with vehicles without passengers. So what are the other options for transportation?
Does it mean that you have to stand on the corner waiting for the city bus service or call and wait for an expensive taxi ride?
There is now a new way to get around town without using your own transportation and the advantages of sharing a ride are more environmentally conscious.
The new service is called Lyft
The friendly pink mustache
How Lyft got started.
The new company started in San Francisco, when Lyft was founded in 2012 by John Zimmer and Logan Green. Lyft is privately held and their website is www.lyft.com
The company motto may give you an idea of what this new transportation service is about with its inviting motto; “your friend with a car”. Basically you can search for available transportation by using your mobile phone with the proper app downloaded and an affordable ride will be provided within minutes. The Lyft driver will be notified to pick you up and the cost of the ride is automatically charged to your designated credit card.
For all of us with a mobile phone in hand, this is a convenient clever way to get around town and a great option for travelers as well when you are not familiar with the roads.
Major cities that have embraced the new concept of peer-to-peer transportation include; Denver, Honolulu, Phoenix, Kansas City, Los Angeles, San Diego, Charlotte, and many others across the U.S. (an impressive start for a such a new concept). Check the website for the full list of current cities.
How do you become a rider or driver?
For those who want to be riders; after you download the app for Lyft, you can request a pick up. You then get to track your driver approaching on your mobile phone with the mapping device and a visual display that includes the drivers photo. You will know in advance, who to expect and how close the vehicle is to arriving. Then you just hop in the front seat and make a new friend.
The attached photo shows the pink mustache on the front the the drivers car. The pink mustache is part of the friendly marketing message to announce to all the other drivers on the road that you are special.
For those you are interested in becoming drivers; you apply and create your profile to join the Lyft network. Then you need to determine when you want to make yourself available to pick up riders. Lyft will match passengers through the smartphone app and you get paid 80% of payments from the passengers. Excess liability insurance is provided to drivers by the company. If you want to consider this as a part time job there is a calculator on the website to estimate your earnings based on your region of driving and the number of hours you plan to participate.
Another helpful tool for both riders and drivers is that they get to rate each other. A low rating means that you will not be match with them again. So that keeps the good chemistry going.
So the next time that you are thinking of the vehicle options, remember that you don't also have to be the driver of your own vehicle, get a Lyft.
What is Lyft?
Competition at the airport
A recent article in USA TODAY dated September 25, 2014, cited that the Nashville airport has approved ride sharing services such as Lyft and Uber to allow curbside passenger pick up. It is a first step in showing the impact of this new alternative to taxi and shuttle rides for busy travelers. Some airports continue to ban the ride sharing services due to a big resistance from the taxi companies. There are economic factors involved as well such as the cost of permits and airport space.
Overall, companies such as Lyft are appealing to the convenience of the customer and the use of app technology to make traveling more efficient.
Do you plan to use Lyft?
If this service was available in your city, would you use it ?
Using the mobile app
The few of the benefits of using Lyft are:
1. Convenience with smartphone technology
2. Fast and efficient pick up for riders
3. Friendly service in a peer-to-peer arrangement
4. Saves on the cost and use of your own vehicle
5. No need to carry cash
Being friendly on the road
In addition to the list of benefits, one intangible outcome of this new form of shared transportation is the human connection. New friendships are formed everyday during the interaction of sharing a ride together. There are many heartwarming stories from the growing community springing out of the users of the Lyft service.
It sounds like this is one more reason to be friendly on the road.