Los Angeles Uber riders, rejoice. UberX is finally coming to LAX.
The company announced that as of 8 a.m. tomorrow, riders will be able to request and get picked up by UberX cars. This comes exactly one month after Lyft launched at LAX, which was originally announced by LA’s Mayor Eric Garcetti.
Uber and Lyft had battled for months with the airport and the LA city council to reach an agreement that allowed pickups at the airport.
Similar to the setup at SFO, UberX cars will join Lyft by picking up passengers at designated spots on the departures level, instead of at arrivals. Uber Black and Uber SUV rides (both driven by TCP-licensed drivers) will continue to pick up passengers at arrivals.
Previously, Uber riders who wanted to use UberX would often take the airport’s rental shuttles to an off-airport location to request a ride since the airport didn’t allow UberX riders to pick up on-premises. UberX is significantly less expensive than Uber Black in Los Angeles…a ride from the airport to downtown can be almost $50 more expensive in a black car.
For this convenience, LAX is charging a surcharge of $4 per UberX pickup and drop-off, a dollar lower than the $5 fee the airport charges licensed Uber Black drivers.
Earlier this week I requested a Lyft as my ride home from the airport, and the experience still has some kinks that need to be worked out. It seems drivers are still trying to figure out the month-old system, and it took me a few requests to find a driver who was willing to pick me up. Plus there are only a few designated ride-share pickup locations, and you’ll most likely have to trek outside of your arrival terminal to find one.
Ultimately, it’s great to have another affordable pickup option at LAX, even if it’s not yet as seamless as a pickup by a traditional TCP-licensed black car.