Are you someone who uses rideshares often? If only there was a way to reward passengers for using services like Uber and Lyft frequently…
Rideshare companies are trying many new programs to reward frequent riders. These programs are still new and are currently being rolled out in limited cities in the United States.
1) Frequent Rider Programs
Uber and Lyft have both experimented with frequent rider programs, where you are rewarded with free trips or ride credits. We are not aware of any of these being offered consistently, but here are a few links: TechCrunch Article, UberVIP in NYC and Dallas.
Fasten is a company based out of Boston that has successfully implemented a frequent rider program. This generous program offers credits for future rides and are applied to all riders automatically. Currently, they are offering $5 credit for taking 10 rides.
2) Prepaid Gift Cards
Uber and Lyft offer prepaid gift cards, and they are available at major retailers. Check out this Uber Gift Card page to find out stores where they are available. These gift cards can be used as a payment method in your Uber app.
Occasionally, retailers like Target or Walmart offer discounts, so you could purchase an Uber or Lyft gift card at a discount and save money. You may also be able to buy them through gift trade programs at a site like GiftCardZen.
Try buying these gift cards using your credit card that offer rebates, cash back, or points. This may also be a way to save a few percentages on Uber rides. Uber launched their own credit card recently that will give passengers rewards for using the card.
3) "Ride Passes" or Commuter Passes
Both Uber and Lyft have offered passes and pre-paid cards in the past. The one for Uber is called "Ride Pass" and the one for Lyft is called "Lyft Line Pass." Unfortunately, these passes are only offered in limited quantities, and you must receive an email from the company to be eligible to purchase the pass.
Lyft - "Lyft Line Pass" - One option is to pay $20 upfront and every ride will be $2 for that month. The other option is to pay $29 upfront and all the rides are covered. This may not be available anymore, but here's a link to a past blog post: https://blog.lyft.com/posts/now-on-sale-membership-passes-for-november
Lyft - "All Access Pass" - A new plan announced in May of 2018 is the monthly subscription of Lyft. Those interested in joining the plan would pay $200 upfront for $15 off 30 rides. So any ride $15 or less is free, and for rides over $15, passengers pay the difference." (more info here)
Uber - "Ride Pass" - In exchange for an upfront fee, Uber guarantees the price or discount for all the rides within that month. The price and discount amount depend on the city, but in one example, a rider paid $12 upfront and for the rest of the month paid $3.49 for UberPool (capped at $15) and $6.99 for UberX (capped at $20). If the price of the ride is higher than the cap, the rest must be paid by the rider. It’s a pretty good deal! What is Ride Pass - More information from Uber
Sign Up and Check Availability
This program is limited in both city span in quantity. Uber and Lyft will internally determine which customers are eligible for these programs and they do not disclose the qualifying criteria. If you qualify, you will be sent an email with an invitation to sign up. If you think you might be eligible, check your email a couple times a month to see if you received an invitation.
Check out this forum post for cities where this has been offered before.
UPDATE - May 2018: Lyft announced an "All Access Pass" for a monthly subscription fee in major cities. There is currently a waitlist. Lyft's All-Access Pas. Monthly subscription coming to major cities. (invitation and waitlist only)