I’ll be honest – I thought I might hate Lyft. I really didn’t want to sit in the passenger seat of some stranger’s personal vehicle and have to make small talk as I stared at a giant pink fuzzy mustache. It just seemed a little too…personal…for me.
So I am shocked to report that I actually loved it. Maybe even more than I love Uber. And that is saying a lot.
I wrote about Lyft a couple of weeks ago because you can currently get a $25 credit if you join using a friend’s referral link. (Here’s my link if you want to use it – I will also get a $25 credit, so thank you!)
In case you haven’t heard of Lyft before, it’s kind of like Uber. But it’s more “of the people, for the people.” Their tagline is “your friend with a car.” In other words, Lyft has more of a community focus…and secretly, that was the part I thought I was going to hate. I just had visions of drivers trying to get me to join hands and belt out a rousing chorus of Kumbaya with them…and I totally couldn’t deal with that.
But, I had a $25 credit, it was a rainy night in San Francisco, and I was with my friend Hottie – so I decided to throw caution to the wind and give Lyft a try.
It was awesome.
I tapped the “Request Lyft” button on my phone while we were in the hotel elevator going out to the street, and before we even walked out of the building, our driver was waiting for us. His name was Richard, and as we climbed into his car (yes, I sat in the front seat), I could tell that I liked him already. He was really friendly in such a genuine way, and he was playing disco hits on the stereo.
His car was immaculate. He had a glass cup of salt water taffies in the cup holder for us to munch on, plus a supply of bottled waters in case we were thirsty. He knew exactly how to get from our hotel to Union Square, and even on a rainy Saturday night, the entire ride only took 13 minutes from door to door.
We loved talking to him. It was kind of like unexpectedly meeting an interesting new person seated next to you on a flight. We laughed and swapped stories the entire ride, and the time flew by, and suddenly we were in front of Macy’s.
The total for our ride came to $16, which included a “prime tip tip” – 50% of the cost of our ride. Since I had a credit, the ride was free.
I was totally fine with the hefty tip because Richard was so fantastic.
However, be forewarned about the Lyft handles $25 “free ride” credits. What they do is that they literally give you a free ride. So my $16 ride counted as my free ride – and I no longer have any credits. In other words, if I had taken a $30 ride, I would have been able to use the $25, plus I would have had to pay an extra $5. While I was happy with the way things worked out, I would have been bummed if I was counting on having the additional credit still in my account.
After we did some late-night shopping at Macy’s, we met a friend for drinks and dinner. By the time we were finished, it was 11:30 pm. Luckily, Hottie also had a $25 Lyft credit, so she used the app to request a ride.
Our driver this time was not quite as fabulous. Her car wasn’t quite as clean, and she didn’t have taffies or waters or music playing in the background. In fact, she truly was like “a friend with a car.” It felt like we had called her away from her spot on the sofa, where she had been curled up with a book, about to go to sleep. While she was perfectly friendly, she also seemed kind of tired and like she just wanted to get us back to the hotel so she could be done for the night.
But the ride was free, quick, and totally fine.
All in all, I would definitely use Lyft again. I enjoyed our ride with Richard so much! In fact, I can say with confidence that it was my favorite car service/taxi ride ever. Here’s hoping Lyft can top it in the future!
Have you tried Lyft yet? What did you think? If you haven’t tried it, would you?