Lyft has a new report out detailing its ‘economic impact’ for 2017, and the document includes a lot of stats on its performance throughout the year. The ride-hailing provider claims 375.5 million rides for the year, which is 130 percent growth measured year-over-year. It served 23 million different passengers, itself a 92 percent YoY increase, and had 1.4 million drivers on the platform – 100 percent growth vs. its total for 2016.
Lyft is making some especially strong claims regarding its impact on car ownership trends: In 2017 alone, it said that almost a quarter of a million passengers on its platform dropped owning a personal vehicle, due to the availability of ridesharing specifically. Fifty percent of its users also report driving their own car less because of Lyft’s service, and a quarter of those on the platform say they don’t feel personal vehicle ownership is that important anymore.
The ride-hailing company also found attitudes generally favorable towards self-driving vehicles and their use: 83 percent of Lyft passengers surveyed by the company said they’d be open to hailing and riding in a self-driving vehicle once they’re available.
Lyft also noted that New Year’s Eve was its busiest day of the year (not surprising) with over 2 million rides in total. Plus, it’s claiming financial increases for both drivers and communities where it’s used – $3.6 billion in total driver earnings for the year, up 140 percent, and $240 million in driver tips, which is a bump of 120 percent vs. last year. Lyft says its passengers have spent $2 billion more in communities where it exists, helping fuel the local economy, and riders donated $3.7 million through its round-up-and-donate program last year.
Clearly, Lyft wants to make a point: Its services help lessen traffic and boost community mobility. But those are both crucial wins for it to claim, especially given criticism that ride-hailing services are increasing traffic in cities in the short-term, not relieving it as some had hoped. Still, ride-hailing and other mobility changes are going to evolve transportation more gradually than many might think, and stats like these are a promising indicator that one day, they could have a far more significant impact on making cities more livable in general.