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Lyft pilots program in Canada that offers cheaper rides for longer waits


SAN FRANCISCO — Lyft Inc. is bringing a pilot program to Canada that gives customers lower fares if they agree to wait longer for their pickup.

The San Francisco-based ride-hailing company says the program will debut in more than 90 Canadian and American cities today.

Lyft says the longer customers wait to be matched to the best located driver, the cheaper their fare will be and that users will pay less than they would for a standard ride.

Lyft is introducing the pilot in a bid to help Canadians find an affordable way to get to essential locations like supermarkets, pharmacies, banks and laundromats during the pandemic.

The company says it has seen the percentage of rides to these essential locations more than double and hopes the new program will alleviate some of the troubles Canadians find while commuting during the pandemic.

The new program comes after Lyft paused its most affordable program, Shared Rides, to stop the spread of COVID-19 and as several Canadian public transit systems have pared back service, making it harder for people to get around.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 5, 2020.

The Canadian Press