This week, we take a historic step forward in bringing community-powered transportation to all corners of the country. After months of receiving unprecedented support from tens of thousands of residents, Lyft will launch in New York City on Friday at 7 p.m. local time, with the outer boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens as our first communities.
Brooklyn and Queens are vastly underserved by public transit options compared to the rest of New York City. In fact, just one of New York’s 23 subway lines passes solely between boroughs, and 95% of taxi pickups happen in Manhattan or a local airport.
The people of New York deserve more transportation options. Lyft provides greater access to a safe, affordable personal transit alternative that is built for New Yorkers, by New Yorkers. A Change.org petition launched by several outer borough residents has already garnered thousands of signatures, and more than 75,000 people have already opened the app to get a ride in New York City.
Now, residents and visitors looking to travel in between boroughs, get a ride to the closest subway station, or head out for a night on the town can easily request a safe and friendly ride. Not only does Lyft cost less than a cab, it also allows passengers to meaningfully connect with someone in their community as they share the ride.
New York’s founding drivers stand behind the idea that together, we can make our big cities feel smaller and spark a movement that changes the way we view transportation. Artists, parents, non-profit workers and even a local New York firefighter make up the community of drivers who will pioneer ridesharing in New York City, and they can’t wait to help drive this progress forward.
As always, safety is our top priority and every driver has undergone a screening process that is more stringent than what’s required for NYC taxis, including a strict background check, vehicle inspection and $1,000,000 insurance that provides more than three times the $300,000 minimum for taxis. These safety improvements are outlined in the comparison chart below.
All new passengers in New York City will receive two weeks of free rides to beat the heat and enjoy their first few Lyfts.
See you on the road, New York!