Ride sharing company Lyft has announced plans to begin testing scheduled rides, starting first in – where else? – San Francisco.
The company has long resisted adding scheduling to its service, arguing there wasn’t a need to schedule rides since most of its drivers could get to you that quickly. The addition of ride scheduling will help Lyft close the gap between its service and for-hire services, like black car and limo companies.
Booking a Lyft will only add one more step to the process. Riders will hail a car like normal, but instead of requesting the car immediately, there will be a clock icon that will pull up a list of times you’d like the car to show up.
Riders will be able to schedule a car up to 24 hours in advance, and can also cancel a reservation up to 30 minutes before. It’s unclear what happens if you cancel a ride too late.
“While on-demand rides remain core to our platform, we’re thrilled to offer even more options to passengers – as well as another opportunity for drivers to earn,” says Lyft in an announcement blog post.
In addition to on-demand and scheduled rides, Lyft offers ride-sharing for certain cities.
In the (far) future, riders will likely be able to summon an autonomous Lyft, as GM and Lyft formed a partnership to bring a fleet of autonomous cars to life.
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