The Lyft App: Your Guide to the Revamped Lyft Passenger App
Earlier this summer, Lyft introduced a revamped app for passengers. The new Lyft app combines ease of use with an emphasis on shared rides, and integration with city transit systems.
Overall, the new Lyft passenger app is a vast improvement, with a cleaner interface, and improved performance, to get you a ride faster.
Lyft App Changes
The home screen of the new Lyft rider app simply asks, “Where are you going?”
Nearby Lyft drivers appear on the map so you can see just how close your potential ride is to your location. Simply type in your destination address or choose from one of your saved locations.
One Tap to Ride
One of the most convenient Lyft app updates is the “one tap to ride” feature. You can quickly request your most frequented destinations—home, work, a favorite restaurant – with a simple click.
Once you choose your destination, you’re prompted with a list of Lyft ride options. Lyft pricing, arrival time, and vehicle size is presented clearly in the app for easy comparison. Go for a traditional Lyft ride or opt for Lyft XL if you have a large group.
Move Your Pickup Spot
Anyone who’s used a rideshare app around tall buildings knows they don’t always get your exact location right.
Now, in the Lyft rider app, once you select your Lyft vehicle type, you can move your pickup spot to a more specific location if needed.
If you’re in a busy area, the new Lyft passenger app may even suggest a pickup location that may allow your driver to get to you faster. This feature aims at making pickup less confusing and time consuming.
The ride company tested its side street pickup method earlier this year in San Francisco, CA, where over 20,000 pickups were diverted to side streets. By moving points of contact to less congested areas, drivers can be more readily available to the waiting passenger.
Watch Your Trip
You’ll also see an easy-to-read map with a clear time of pickup, highlighted route, and estimated arrival time so you can plan your trip and arrive on time.
Lyft Line Changes to Lyft Shared
With the new Lyft passenger app comes a new name to one of Lyft’s service lines. Lyft has changed the name of it’s shared rides service from Lyft Line to Lyft Shared.
On Lyft Shared, you request a ride for you, and up to one other person (two max). On your ride, your driver may pick up and drop off additional passengers who are going the same way as you.
Lyft has always emphasized shared rides. In July 2017, the company raised the driver pay rates for Lyft Shared rides to match regular Lyft rides.
It was the first time a rideshare company announced a pay increase for drivers nationwide.
A year later, the updated Lyft app marks another step forward for shared ride improvement. Lyft is focusing on shared rides as a way of lowering their carbon footprint. By 2020, the company is aiming to have shared rides account for 50 percent of all Lyft rides
The new version of the Lyft rider app furthers this goal by featuring shared rides more prominently. In markets where Lyft Shared is available, when passengers choose a destination, the shared ride option is now listed first.
Company execs say the change has already prompted a 5 percent increase in Lyft Shared rides.
Lyft Shared Ride Pricing
Lyft Shared (formerly Lyft Line) pricing depends on your city, driver availability, and the likelihood of getting paired with another rider.
However, Lyft Shared is always cheaper than a standard Lyft ride.
The new Lyft app shows you upfront how much your shared ride will cost. That’s the price you pay, whether you’re matched with other riders or not.
Oh, and be ready at the pickup point when you request your ride!
Lyft Shared drivers will wait no longer than one minute since other riders are waiting.
You can see if Lyft Shared is available near you on the Lyft city listings page.
Lyft Bike, Scooter And City Integration Plans
The new Lyft passenger app can integrate with public transportation systems. The first two integrations will be in Marin County and Santa Monica, California. Lyft will be partnering with the Transportation Authority of Marin and the Big Blue Bus in Santa Monica.
At the end of June, Lyft acquired Motivate, North America’s oldest and largest bikeshare company. The move is part of Lyft’s strategy to strengthen its eco-friendly approach to offering transportation.
Motivate provided 80 percent of all bikeshare rides in America last year, running platforms in major cities like:
- Citi Bike in New York
- Ford GoBike in the San Francisco Bay area
- Divvy in Chicago
- Blue Bikes in the Boston metro area
- Capital Bikeshare in the Washington, D.C. metro area
- BIKETOWN in the Portland metro area
- CoGo in Columbus, Ohio
- Nice Ride in Minneapolis
Bikeshare plays into Lyft’s approach to integrate with city transportation systems and offer more options for community members.
Lyft’s purchase of Motivate positions the company well for the future:
- Lyft Passenger App Integration: Lyft will eventually be able to let riders rent bikes in the Lyft rider app, similar to what Uber has done with Uber Bikes. Riders can skip the traffic and avoid busy major routes by using bicycles and scooters (more on that in a moment).
- Existing Bikeshare Infrastructure: Lyft’s buyout of Motivate comes with contracts and relationships already in place in major cities across the U.S. Rather than battling the competition of other transportation outlets, Lyft is now partnering with them to give you more options.
Now, About Those Scooters
In San Francsico, Lyft is one of several companies that have applied to operate motorized scooter rentals. Tentatively, the new venture is called Lyft Bikes.
Lyft Bikes and (potentially) scooters create an alternative to walking or enlarging the carbon-footprint with more vehicles.
The advantage to consumers is obvious, but some argue the scooters are more hassle than they’re worth. After San Francisco became littered with scooters left on street corners and sidewalks, the city instituted permitting requirements.
The city says it will decide soon which of twelve companies will be granted the permits. Each will operate 250 scooters under a 12-month trial program.
Lyft is vying against Uber, Spin, LimeBike, Bird, Razor, Scoot, Ofo, Skip, CycleHop, Ridecell, and USScooter for a permit. City leaders say after six months under the pilot, they’ll reevaluate and consider doubling the number of e-scooters available.
Lyft’s San Francisco scooter pilot program would serve as a launch pad to put scooters in other cities.
While the recent Lyft app refresh makes it easier for those hoping to share their commute with another passenger or get to their destination faster, more options could be on the horizon. Bike and scooter sharing could soon mean anytime you want to leave your home but don’t want to walk, you’ll be able to use Lyft to get to your destination.
The Lyft rider app highlights the importance and demand for shared ride availability, working in tandem with public transportation platforms, and speed of service. Based on the company’s moves toward alternative transportation, it’s safe to say this summer’s update will likely not be the last Lyft app change we see.
If you’re interested in checking out the new Lyft app and getting up to $20 in Lyft rides credits, click the button below to get started.