- Fingerprint-based background checks, which the ridesharing companies say take longer, are more costly, and scare off drivers from signing up. Interestingly just the week before voting for this, the City Council voted against asking for criminal records on employment applications. And the world is safer with ridesharing than without it — Austin’s Sheriff opposes the rules because Uber and Lyft reduce DUIs in the city.
- Geofencing which keeps certain convenient pickup and dropoff areas for taxis only especially during festivals (this cronyist piece of the rule doesn’t get nearly as much attention)
A Taxi… Or a Police Car? in Arlington, Virginia
- 1% of all revenue (not profit) from ridesharing to the city
There are a few alternatives to using Uber and Lyft in Austin but they don’t come close to being sufficient. Last week — on a Wednesday, no holiday — the standard airport parking lot was full because people had to drive. I may need to buy a car.
Fortunately here’s how you can still use Uber or Lyft in Austin.
- I haven’t used Uber since Jan 2015, so these instructions are for using the Lyft app. If you prefer Uber, I assume it works similarly.
…Open the app and drag the map around until your pin 📍 is outside of Austin’s City Limits.
…Set the pickup and request your Lyft.
…Text or call your driver immediately and ask if they’re okay with picking you up at your actual location. (If they’re concerned that they can’t, tell them it’s all okay, you read it on the Internet.)
If the driver isn’t able to pick you up, you can always cancel in the first 5 minutes for free. In which case, move your pin to another car icon and try it again.
Wait patiently for your fabulous driver, it’ll take a little longer than usual.