Lyft and Uber try to persuade commuters to give up their cars with new monthly passes

Nov 19, 2018, 2:51 PM
A Lyft car, with the trademark pink mustache, rolls down the streets. (Jeff Chiu, Associated Press)...
A Lyft car, with the trademark pink mustache, rolls down the streets. (Jeff Chiu, Associated Press)
(Jeff Chiu, Associated Press)

Lyft and Uber are pushing out new programs that they hope will turn their ride share programs into viable alternatives to owning a car. Both companies unveiled monthly passes in October, allowing customers to pay a set fee for a free pass to drive anywhere they like.

They’re hoping that the lower costs of a monthly pass will convince commuters to ditch their cars and rely on their drivers to take them everywhere they want to go.

But when you add up the costs, are these monthly passes really worth it?

The real cost of a Lyft Pass

Lyft Pass Driver

A Lyft driver in Salt Lake City. Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015. (Laura Seitz, Deseret News)

Lyft’s program, called the Lyft Pass, advertises that, for $299 a month, commuters can take 30 free rides around their city.

On the surface, that seems like a good deal. According to Nerdwallet, the average monthly payment on a new car is $523, and that price is only a small part of a massive expense. Gas, insurance, repairs, and other costs, they say, add an average of $706 to that bill every single month.

But the Lyft Pass might not be quite as cheap as it seems. The program only covers 30 rides of up to $15 each per month, with a 5 percent discount on every ride after that.

That means that, if your commute is much more than 5 miles, you’re going to paying out-of-pocket for the extra distance. And with only 30 rides a month, the Lyft Pass doesn’t offer enough rides for a full-time employee to get to work and back each day.

At best, then, a Lyft Pass will just shave $150 off of what would otherwise be a $450 expense. That might be enough to make it cheaper than driving for some people, but it won’t be for everybody.

Uber’s equivalent, the Ride Pass, takes a slightly different approach, offering discounts instead of free rides. For $14.99 a month (or $24.99 a month in LA), their Ride Pass offers discounts of up to 15 percent on each ride.

For the time being, however, the Uber Ride Pass is only available in Los Angeles, Austin, Orlando, Denver, and Miami. For those of us in Utah, then, it simply isn’t an option.

Is it worth it?

Even if you can save a few dollars with Lyft Pass, is it worth giving up the freedom of the driver’s seat?

That’s an issue Dave & Dujanovic talked about on the air. Debbie Dujanovic says she couldn’t imagine relying on a ride share program to get around, but Dave Noriega says that the only reason people don’t jump on ideas like this one is that we’re “addicted to cars”.

If you missed the show live, you can still hear everything they had to say on the Dave & Dujanovic podcast.

Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon on KSL Newsradio. Users can find the show on the KSL Newsradio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.

Listen on Apple PodcastsListen on Google Play Music

Today’s Top Stories

Dave & Dujanovic

FILE - This Friday, Feb. 16, 2018, file photo shows application icons from left, Facebook, Facebook...
Curt Gresseth

Expert gives tips on conquering your downward social media scroll

Are you addicted to the social-media scroll? An expert weighs in on what you can do to slow the scroll.
3 days ago
High water in the Gardiner River along the North Entrance to Yellowstone National Park in Montana, ...
Curt Gresseth

Be ready for flash flooding: Expert shares advice

An expert with the Utah Division of Emergency Management shares his expertise and crucial tips on how to be ready for flash flooding when you are in a vehicle or at home.
4 days ago
salt lake mayorMendenhall guns...
Curt Gresseth

After NY law is struck down, two Utah experts sound off on gun rights

Two advocates on either side of the gun-control vs. gun rights debate sound off on the Supreme Court's 6-3 ruling to expand the right to carry a firearm in public.
9 days ago
Salt Lake County Search and Rescue safely rescued a hiker  out of the Lisa Falls trail on Friday.
Curt Gresseth

Search and rescue expert has tips for hikers

Before you head out on your hike, take someone with you, tell somebody where you are going and when you plan to return. Those are just a few words for hikers from an expert on search and rescue.
10 days ago
A fire engine is seen as the Sheep fire burns in Wrightwood, Calif., Monday, June 13, 2022. (AP Pho...
Curt Gresseth

Be Ready Utah: What to do when wildfires close in on your home

Will you be ready if wildfires close in on your home? A survivor of a wildfire shares his experience and an expert shares tips and advice.
11 days ago
(Photo Credit: CNN/Shutterstock)...
Curt Gresseth

What is behind rising credit-card debt? Financial expert weighs in.

A national expert explains the sudden rise in credit-card debt in April and what you can do to lower your monthly payments.
17 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Tax Harassment...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Joseph Smith Memorial Building...
Temple Square

The Joseph Smith Memorial Building is an icon of Salt Lake City | Why hosting an event at this beautiful location will make you a hero this year

Here's why hosting an event at the iconic Joseph Smith Memorial Building in downtown Salt Lake City will make you a hero this year.
Lyft and Uber try to persuade commuters to give up their cars with new monthly passes