This is an effort to encourage more people to get vaccinated ASAP.
On Tuesday, May 11, the White House announced a partnership with Uber and Lyft to ensure that transportation is never a barrier to getting the COVID-19 vaccine, and as of Monday, May 24, the ride-hailing companies are officially rolling out their free rides programs. In an effort to encourage more people to get vaccinated, Lyft and Uber will now be comping rides from about 80,000 designated vaccination sites until July 4 — and it's so easy to take advantage of. Here's how to get free Uber and Lyft rides for COVID-19 vaccines within each app.
As part of President Joe Biden's goal to have 70% of the U.S. adult population get their first COVID-19 vaccine shot by Independence Day, the White House is taking steps to eliminate one barrier to reaching this goal: the lack of reliable and affordable transportation for many people. The Uber and Lyft partnership with the White House means that anyone in the United States can score a free ride to and from one of approximately 80,000 vaccination sites, per The Wall Street Journal.
To take advantage of this promo, riders will be able to open the Lyft or Uber app, select a vaccination site near them (where they have made an appointment prior), redeem their ride by following the directions in the app, and then request an Uber or Lyft for a ride to and from the vaccination site free of charge.
For Lyft, customers can get a ride code that covers $15 each way through the Lyft app. If you want to take advantage of the feature, you can tap on the Bandaid-ed Lyft rides prompt, which reads “Join the ride of the century.” From there, you can redeem your $15 code, which you can use on Lyft rides, bikes, and scooters between standard pharmacy hours (6 a.m. to 8 p.m.). Keep in mind, you need to make your vaccination appointment prior to calling a ride — you can't do it in the Lyft app.
Also starting on May 24, Uber riders heading to their vaccine appointments can expect the company to comp up to $25 for each leg of the trip. Keep in mind that in order for you to take advantage of the deal, you’ll have to make a vaccine appointment first. To book your ride or find an appointment, you’ll first want to open your Uber app and tap the icon that says “Vaccine.” If you don’t have a vaccine appointment yet, you’ll be able to search centers that have availability there. Once you have your appointment booked, tap, “Get your free ride now” to request your ride to your appointment or from your appointment, and then enter the zip code where your appointment will take place. After you select the name of the provider and the type of Uber ride you want to take, you’re good to go.
Keep in mind that while your Uber and Lyft drivers will still be paid for your free trip, you might still want to consider tipping them for your ride.
This isn't the first time that Lyft and Uber have offered discounted or complimentary rides to vaccination sites. Lyft previously partnered with Anthem, JP Morgan, and United Way with a goal of providing 60 million rides to and from vaccination sites for underserved communities. Meanwhile, Uber committed to giving away 10 million free rides and food deliveries to healthcare workers, seniors, and underserved communities. In addition, Uber users can also donate a ride to someone in need through the Vaccine Access Fund.
Both Uber and Lyft will be offering their free rides program until July 4, so keep an eye out for yourself and let your unvaccinated friends and family know they can keep tabs on their apps for additional updates.
When using a ride-hailing service like Uber or Lyft, you'll want to follow each company's COVID-19 guidelines and keep in mind the CDC's most updated guidelines for transportation.
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