While the rate of growth of ridesharing apps has been incredible, they’ve been facing uphill battles when it comes to the right to pick up at the nation’s larger airports. While UberBLACK has historically been allowed to pick up at airports, the battle has been much tougher for UberX and Lyft, which have been struggling with gaining such permission.
Los Angeles is the city I spend the most time in, and I’m extremely frustrated by the fact that UberX and Lyft can’t do pick ups at LAX. Instead you can either use UberBLACK or you can try to catch an UberX or Lyft from somewhere off the airport premises. Neither option is ideal.
The good news was that in July the Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners approved UberX and Lyft to pick up passengers at the airport, though they’d be subject to a $4 airport origination fee. The hope was that they’d launch by late August, though unfortunately that seemed to be optimistic.
Several months later they’ve still not launched… though it looks like that’s finally changing.
To make mobility in Los Angeles easier for residents and visitors, Mayor Garcetti announced that pick ups from transportation network companies (TNCs) will officially launch tomorrow – just in time for the rush of holiday travel.
At 8 a.m. tomorrow, December 23, Lyft will begin pick ups at LAX, making the rideshare company the first TNC to be licensed for this service at the airport, and expanding transportation options for travelers who already enjoy access to taxis, shuttles, and the popular FlyAway ® service.
“Tomorrow, we will have ‘Lyft-off’ at LAX, giving our passengers what they have been asking for, another safe and convenient way to get to and from the airport,” said Mayor Garcetti. ” As we continue rebuilding nearly every terminal at the airport, and work to bring rail to LAX, our passengers deserve access to all available options to ensure they have an excellent experience.”
As you can see, Lyft will be able to offer pick ups at LAX starting at 8AM on Wednesday, December 23, 2015.
On top of that Lyft is offering a promotion for those who ride with them to or from LAX soon. You can get $5 off your first two rides to or from LAX using promotion code FLY2015. The promotion code is valid through January 1, 2016.
UberX and Lyft in Los Angeles are both extremely reasonably priced and generally good quality, so I’m really excited about this. For example, I jut did fare estimates from LAX to West Hollywood. For a taxi the fare estimate is $67, while for Lyft it’s $24.
I’m excited to finally see the “budget” ride sharing services to be able to pick up at LAX.
It’s interesting to see Lyft beat UberX to the punch at LAX. The same happened in Las Vegas, where Lyft got permission to operate out of McCarran Airport in late-October, while UberX only got permission to operate out of the airport in early December. Something tells me UberX will follow more quickly in Los Angeles, given the size of the airport.
I’ve actually never used Lyft before (given that I find UberX to be comparable and available in most of the same markets), but this will cause me to give them a try when I return to LAX in early January.
Are you excited about finally being able to use Lyft at LAX?