Smart city

Lyft aiming to sound the death knell for private cars

  • 01 Aug
  • 2 min

Lyft is on a mission to end the current practice of road vehicles occupied by a single person. The US-based ride-hailing company is even prepared to reward users who agree to get out of their cars. Details below.

Private cars in cities are often synonymous with traffic jams and parking problems, plus air pollution. Now the self-driving, shared electric car may be about to put an end to all these inconveniences. However, Lyft does not intend to let the grass grow under its feet but is already moving into action to ensure that this approach takes over our roads in the near future. The San Francisco-based transport-on-demand specialist has come up with a number of ideas to combat the phenomenon of privately-owned cars.  The highly popular shared vehicle service Lyft Line – the equivalent of Uber Pool – is the company's basic alternative to the traditional mode of road transport. These two competitors have also recently invested massively in two-wheeler self-service ventures – Uber teaming up with Lime and Lyft acquiring Motivate, which runs the CitiBike bike-sharing service. Lyft is in fact going further than its US rival by offering to reward users who agree to leave their private cars at home for 30 days. Launched in Chicago, this offer could be worth $550 to those who sign up. The idea is not to actually pay people in hard cash but to incentivize them to use other forms of transport by giving them tokens. Accordingly, $300 will be available through Lyft Line, plus $45 worth of tokens for a month to use the Divvy shared bike service, $100 dollars via an arrangement with car-sharing startup Zipcar and $105 to use a bus and train service. Lyft has set a target of having 50% of all journeys booked on its platform shared by 2020. Rumors are also circulating that the Californian company might also acquire or enter into partnership with self-service electric scooter provider Spin – a venture that might well bring Lyft closer to its planned destination a bit faster.  

By Sophia Qadiri