What is Lyft’s Prime Time Pricing?

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Many rideshare users may be familiar with Uber’s “Surge Pricing” but did you know that Lyft has a similar service, which they call Prime Time Pricing? 

What is Prime Time?

According to Lyft, Prime Time pricing occurs when the demand for Lyft rides is greater than the number of Lyft drivers on the road.

Why does Lyft have Prime Time? 

Similar to Uber’s surge pricing, Prime Time encourages drivers to go out and complete rides when the demand for rides is high. In order to meet the excess demand at certain busy times of the day, Prime Time serves as a way to get more Lyft drivers on the road and getting passengers where they need to go, and in return passengers are charged an additional percentage on top of the original ride price. 

How is it calculated?

At the end of your ride, Prime Time adds a pre-determined percentage of your base ride amount. This is calculated prior to the Trust and Safety fee as well as taxes and airport fees. The specific percent is calculated based on a function of supply and demand (if demand is much higher than supply, the increased percentage will reflect this).

How do you know when it’s Prime Time?

For passengers, on your initial ride request screen the Prime Time notification will appear if the pricing is in effect. It will also indicate the Prime Time percentage, and you have to accept the higher fare before requesting a Lyft ride. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is it good for Lyft drivers?

Prime Time pricing allows Lyft drivers to earn more money depending on how/when the Prime Time pricing occurs. On the Lyft App for drivers, a heat map shows that allows riders to see where the demand for rides is the highest.  As pictured below, the shaded areas display where the Prime Time is in effect for drivers. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How is it different from Uber Surge Pricing?

Prime Time Pricing is very similar to Uber’s Surge Pricing, except Prime Time pricing uses a percentage, whereas Uber Surge Pricing reflects the fare increase by the amount it will be multiplied (i.e. 2X the normal fare). Another difference between the two pricing tactics is that generally, Uber tends to have higher surge rates than Lyft when it gets busy. It is also easier to avoid Prime Time than Surge Pricing because the areas where Prime Time is enacted are usually smaller than the Surge Pricing area.

For more information on Uber Surge Pricing check out our article here: http://www.taxifarefinder.co/newsroom/?p=3775

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent.

Animal Taxi Monday 4.4.16

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This pig doesn’t even realize what’s on his back! #AnimalTaxiMonday

Click here to view all of our Animal Taxi Monday pictures.

Which Airports Allow Uber and Lyft Pickups?

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It’s the question everyone has been asking– Can I get picked up by an Uber or Lyft driver at the airport? We did some research to find out which of the major airports allow rideshare pickups, and which currently do not!

Keep in mind for those airports that do allow rideshare services to pickup passengers, there are restrictions! In order for Uber and Lyft to get permission to operate at certain airports, an “airport charge” may be added to your trip. This charge can range from $2 to $5 extra, and is dependent on the specific airport.

Some airports currently allow Uber to operate, but only through services such as UberBLACK and UberSUV, which are typically more expensive than the standard UberX ride. We have also heard of people not being able to request an UberX if their pin is inside the parameters of the airport, but if you move the pin to the edge, the app will allow you to request an UberX ride. You will simply then have to contact your Uber driver to give them your actual location.

The chart below shows the information we found for which airports currently allow Uber and Lyft pickups and drop offs. The highlighted portions indicate that Uber and Lyft currently do not operate at those airports, but that may change in the near future with drafts to legalize airport pickups.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have any information to add or update? We’d love to hear from you! Post in the comments below!

Ride-Sharing Around the World

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You may already be familiar with Uber, the popular rideshare service in the U.S., but did you know there are many other rideshare companies just like Uber all around the world? Check out these many different rideshare applications to learn more about what services they have to offer and how they may differ from Uber!

 

 

Uber 

In the United States, Uber is the largest player in the rideshare industry, supposedly valued at over $50 Billion! Uber was founded in 2009 in San Francisco, California, and is currently available in hundreds of cities across the world.

The Uber app is available on your smartphone, and its platform connects passengers with available drivers through GPS capabilities, and alerts the passenger what time the vehicle will arrive. All payments for the ride are processed through the app. Uber takes a percentage of the ride fee, while the rest is automatically deposited to the driver.

Uber X is the standard version of the service, however there are also services such as Uber Black and Uber SUV, which provide a higher quality vehicle, and larger vehicle, respectively. Uber Pool is another service that allows riders going in the same direction to share a ride, and split the cost.

Uber drivers are independent contractors of the Uber, and they drive on their own time. Uber drivers are not licensed taxi drivers, however, there is an Uber Taxi service (the uber app hails you a standard taxi) that has been tested in multiple cities. The availability of this feature is dependent on local regulations.

To estimate your Uber ride check out UberFareFinder.com

 

 

Lyft

Lyft is a rideshare service very similar to Uber. Also founded in San Francisco, Lyft is one of Uber’s biggest competitors in the US market. Lyft is not available in as many cities as Uber, but it is still very prevalent around the world.

Lyft is also an on-demand service through a smartphone app, with drivers who are paired with passengers looking for a ride. The payment method is identical to Uber’s. Like Uber, there are different services such as Lyft Plus and Lyft Line. Lyft Plus is a six-passenger ride and Lyft Line is the carpooling service similar to Uber Pool.

There are currently no features on the Lyft app that allow users to request a ride from a licensed cab.

Recently rideshare companies such as Didi Kuaidi, the rideshare giant in China, have been investing in Lyft in order to stand strong against Uber.

To estimate your Uber ride check out LyftFareFinder.com

 

Didi Kuaidi 

In February of 2015, Didi Dache and Kuaidi Dache, two of China’s largest taxi-hailing services, merged to create a world leading smartphone transport service.

Didi Kuaidi is different from US-based services like Uber and Lyft in that it connects different taxi services to passengers looking for a ride. They provide three different ride requests: on-demand, pre-reservation, and airport pickup. When a passenger requests a ride, they can either request an on-demand ride (similar to Uber and Lyft), or book a ride ahead of time. This reservation capability is not available for Uber and Lyft.

 

 

Hailo

In Ireland, Hailo is a smartphone ride-hailing app that works very similar to Didi Kuaidi. Hailo is a taxi-hailing app, different from the private car hires of Uber and Lyft. Nearly all of Dublin’s taxi drivers now use Hailo and similar to Uber, they are only charged if they get a fare request. Drivers of Hailo can also chose to drive at their convenience, as there are no weekly or monthly requirements.

Hailo was launched in Dublin 2 years ago, and it is the most popular service in Ireland. The company charges 12% commission, and the payment process is identical to Uber and Lyft, where you pay by credit card through the mobile app.

Hailo+ or HailoBlack are services also offered to passengers. Hailo+ is for larger vehicle requests, and HailoBlack is the same idea as Uber Black, which gives a more luxury experience than the standard Hailo car.

One of the main differences between Hailo and Uber is that Hailo allows a pre-selected tipping option for customers. With Uber, there is no platform where you can tip your driver. Hailo also allows passengers to pre-book rides, similar to Didi Kuaidi.

 

 

GrabTaxi 

In Singapore, an app called “GrabTaxi” is the main player in the industry, and it is a taxi-hailing app that aims to improve the local taxi markets by introducing a simple and easy way for passengers and drivers to capitalize on matching supply and demand. This mobile app, similar to those discussed previously, relies on technology to match taxi drivers with passengers.

GrabTaxi was founded in June 2012 in Malaysia, and it currently serves 26 cities across six countries in Southeast Asia.

GrabTaxi started out connecting its users with licensed taxis, but it has since expanded to cover Uber-style private cars. They have also introduced a motorbike taxi service in Vietnam, Indonesia, and Thailand. The company stated that they currently have 110,000 drivers on their platform with 11 bookings made per second.

 

 

Ola 

Ola is another taxi-hailing app that exists most prominently in India, holding around 60% of the market share of taxi-hailing services there.

Passengers first are prompted to enter their current city and destination, but unlike other apps, it does not automatically pair you with a driver and car. The app then searches available taxis in your area, and provides you with a list of results and prices of different cars from different operators. You are able to view ratings of operators, and then chose which operator you would like based on your preferences.

You can request a ride on-demand, or you can also reserve your ride ahead of time. Ola accepts both cashless and cash payments upon delivery. With Ola, you will not be surprised about the fare you have to pay because all of their pricing is listed on their website.

To estimate your Uber ride check out OlaFareFinder.com

 

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent. 


Rideshare Carpooling Services

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On demand ridesharing services are becoming increasingly popular in today’s society, and with the introduction of the carpooling feature, the way of transportation may be changed for good. These services claim that carpooling will reduce the number of cars on the road, and help solve problems of congestion in large cities, pollution, and parking challenges.

Uber Pool:

Uber Pool is the carpooling service where you can share a ride with another person who happens to request a ride along a similar route. With this service, you and the other rider will split the cost of the ride. The way you request Uber Pool is the same way you would request your typical Uber—just press the button to request a ride and select the “Uber Pool” option. Once Uber finds a match for you, you will be notified of the driver’s first name.

A criticism of Uber Pool from passengers is that if the next passenger does not show up and you requested Uber Pool, you will be charged the full Uber X price, with no discount. Passengers expect to be getting a cheaper ride, but often there are no matches in the area and passengers are forced to go out of their way and still pay the non-discounted price.

Uber drivers also have strong opinions on the carpooling service—many say it is not fair for them because they have to drop off and pick up multiple passengers and not get paid extra. Uber raves that the feature allows people to communicate more and meet new people, but drivers claim that most people do not speak to each other, and they do not seem to benefit from the carpooling aside from the discount.

Lyft Line:

The Lyft Line service is very similar to Uber Pool. To request a ride, all you have to do is select the “Line” option when you open the Lyft app on your phone, and Lyft will build your line for you. One aspect of Lyft line that differs from Uber Pool is that the price of your trip is fixed after you select the “Line” option, meaning that even if they do not find another passenger, you will still be paying the discounted rate. When the “Line” arrives, Lyft will text you and you can then enter the car. The feature that gives the rider a discount regardless of the other passengers arriving is similar to what Uber Pool had when it first was introduced, but Uber’s policy has since been changed.

Other services:

Uber and Lyft are not the only companies who have this “carpooling” feature—the ridesharing app Sidecar also has something called “Shared Rides” where the user can get a discount for sharing a ride with another passenger traveling on the same route.

There are mixed reviews of the carpooling service for on-demand ridesharing apps, but who knows it may soon replace the need for public transportation, and perhaps even the need for personal vehicles!

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent.

 

 

 

 

 

What is Uber’s Surge Pricing?

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What is surge pricing?

Surge pricing happens when there is a high demand for Uber cars, meaning that there is a large amount of people who are trying to request an Uber. What surge pricing does is apply a multiplier on every fare, therefore raising their prices. Surge pricing can happen during any day of the week, but it is most common on the weekends. During the week surge pricing is likely to occur at rush hour, and on the weekends it may be enacted during the late hours of the night for people going out and coming home from bars and similar venues. Other times when surge pricing might be enacted is on holidays or during bad whether when a lot of people are looking for rides.

What does surge pricing look like?

If you are requesting an Uber during a surge period, before your request is confirmed a screen will appear on your Uber app that will inform you about the current surge. When the surge is above 2.0x the normal fare, users will have to manually type the surge number in order to acknowledge that they are aware of the price they will be paying. Uber does this so no users are surprised when they see their fare was more expensive than usual.

How long do Uber surges last?

A study from Northeastern University found that Uber surge pricing can often last as little as five minutes. During this study researchers created over 40 Uber accounts and hailed cars in Manhattan and San Francisco over the course of a month. What they found was that the surge pricing lasted for a short period many times, and the surge pricing area was sometimes surprisingly small as well, in Manhattan especially. The study suggested that passengers wait-out surges rather than agree to pay higher prices.

What other companies use surge pricing?

Lyft, Uber’s top competitor, also uses surge pricing, and calls it “PT.” The main difference between Uber and Lyft’s surge pricing is that with Lyft, the drivers are not aware when there is a surge. The Lyft surge area is also a lot smaller than Uber’s. In general it was found that Uber tends to have higher surge rates than Lyft.

Besides rideshare companies, there are also other types of companies that use strategies similar to surge pricing. For example, airlines use similar tactics to sell tickets, and hotels use higher prices to book rooms especially during the busy seasons.

Uber did not invent the idea of charging people a higher price according to demand, but the main difference between Uber and the other companies using similar tactics is that Uber is transparent about how much you are going to pay.

Why Surge Pricing is Controversial:

Surge pricing can be beneficial because it helps to meet the high demand of people needing cars by giving drivers an incentive to turn on their apps, but it is also a controversial topic. Sometimes, the surge prices can be extreme, and it can cost hundreds of dollars to make a journey that normally would cost less than $20. Ridesharing companies like Uber also tend to enact surge pricing when people need cars the most, during dangerous weather conditions such as snow storms and torrential downpours. This makes it harder for people to travel during emergencies unless they are willing to pay the extreme price. Uber has started to cut down on surge pricing during emergencies after many people were disgruntled by their lack of compassion but it seems like there are still plenty of times when people need a ride in an emergency and find themselves faced with an exorbitant bill.

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent. 

10 “Rules” for Hailing a Taxi!

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1. Make it clear you’re looking for a ride, and not just saying hi! 

 

2. Have a clear final destination in mind, drivers don’t want you to “wing it”

 

3. Make sure it’s actually a taxi, and not just a random yellow vehicle! 

 

4. Be aggressive to make sure the taxi driver can see you!

 

5. Check to see if your whole squad will fit in the car or else you’ll be separated!

 

6.  Don’t bring any smelly food in your cab or else your driver might try to steal it! 

 

7.  Hail the taxi yourself, and leave your kitten at home! 

 

8. Make sure the license plate meets your standards!

 

9. Check the trunk of the taxi for miscellaneous body parts! 

10. And most importantly, don’t forget your wallet! 

 

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent. 

 

Way2Ride E-hailing Taxi App!

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The taxi payment app Way2ride was introduced last year, and it allowed people to pay for their yellow cab taxi rides in NYC through its payment feature.

But this September, Way2ride introduced a feature that could become a huge success for the taxi industry as a whole.

The app was created by Verifone Systems was started as solely a payment app where users could pay for their taxis. Now, Way2ride includes the infamous hailing feature allowing users to submit requests for taxi drivers, similar to the controversial ride-hailing app, Uber.

Currently this app only exists in New York City and Philadelphia but has already grown to include almost 20,000 yellow and green taxi drivers.

The introduction of new apps like this one present an interesting question about whether they will succeed in the long-run or not. With so much competition coming in from Uber and other ride-hailing apps, who’s to say if this one will catch on in the market.

Way2ride believes that the creation of this app may help taxis with their ongoing battle with services like Uber and Lyft because nowadays consumers want everything to be digital. If people have access to an app and can order a taxi through their phone it will be a step forward for the taxi industry as a whole.

When the app was created in 2014,  it received many awards. It was selected by The 2014 American Business Awards (ABA) as a Stevie® Award finalist in the New Product or Service of the Year – Transportation category, 2014 CNP (CardNotPresent) Customer Choice Award in the Best Alternative Payment Solution category, and the 2014 Appy Award for Best Mobile Payments.

We’re keeping our eye out for up-and-coming apps like Way2ride that may soon change the way we think about ordering and paying for a taxi!

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent. 

 

Why Are Taxis Yellow?

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Everyone knows how to detect a bright yellow cab driving through the city streets, but something that many people do not know is why these taxi cabs are yellow. Have no fear, we are here to share the answer with you!

The first taxis ever made in the year 1907 were actually not yellow– they were painted red and green! That all changed in 1917 when John Hertz, founder of Hertz Rent-a-Car system, came into the picture. Hertz had the idea of hiring the University of Chicago to conduct a scientific study to determine which color “stands out” to the human eye from a distance, and yellow was the winner! There emerged the first ever yellow taxi, and the idea appears to have stuck from then on!

Now the law says that all medallion cabs must be yellow, and any other vehicles for hire can be any color besides yellow.

In some cities, like London for example, cabs have always been historically black, and that has not changed since the 17th century when they used a horse and carriage. The iconic history of these cabs makes them stand out without having to be bright yellow!

So now the next time you see a taxi, you will know where its color came from!

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent. 

 

What The Uber?! Uber Hired 25 Drivers with Criminal Records Including a Murderer!

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Another weekly What The Uber story about how Uber isn’t as thorough as they should be when conducting background checks of their potential drivers!

The San Francisco district attorney’s office states that Uber allowed 25 drivers with criminal records to drive for the ride sharing service. One of these drivers was a convicted murderer who previously spent 26 years in prison before being released in 2008. The driver supposedly joined Uber in 2014 using a fake identity and gave over 1,000 rides with Uber before he was discovered. How do you miss that?!

This wasn’t the only mistake Uber made– over 20 more of their drivers were previously convicted of crimes and many spent a significant time in prison. Another one of the drivers was convicted for “committing lewd or lascivious acts against a child under 14” which was conveniently not found when Uber conducted a background check. This ex-driver gave almost 6,000 rides with Uber, and according to the records, some of these rides included unaccompanied children.

Some of the other ex-criminals were convicted of felonies such as kidnapping, selling drugs, and drunk driving.

San Francisco is pushing Uber to use fingerprinting technology in their background checks but Uber is strongly resisting, because they believe that no system is 100% foolproof. I’d say it’s in their best interest to give it a try.

If you have a What The Uber moment or want to share a What The Uber story please email[email protected] or use the hashtag #WhatTheUber to get your story featured and shared on our social media!

Felicia is an intern at Unleashed, LLC. She is from upstate NY, and is currently pursuing a Marketing degree at Bentley University. One day she hopes to travel the world and visit every continent.