Nov 2, 2023 - News

Lyft launches Women+ feature in Austin

The prompt that women and nonbinary passengers will receive from Lyft. Photo: Courtesy of Lyft

Women and nonbinary Lyft riders and drivers in Austin will soon be able to connect on the app, an effort by the company to provide more peace of mind during a ride-share experience.

Driving the news: The program, dubbed Women+ Connect, is now available in Austin and roughly 50 other cities.

  • The program first rolled out in September in Chicago, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose, with plans to quickly expand nationwide.

Why it matters: Advocacy groups have long questioned the safety of ride-sharing, and recent reports indicate a startling number of violent crimes have occurred during Uber and Lyft rides, according to The New York Times.

State of play: Women make up nearly half of Lyft riders but account for just 23% of drivers, according to a recent company survey.

  • Lyft is hopeful its new program will encourage more women drivers by providing an extra layer of safety and confidence.

By the numbers: Lyft officials say they've already noticed an uptick in eligible riders and drivers using the new tool.

  • In early access cities, riders had about 60% more rides with a woman or nonbinary driver.
  • Drivers using Women+ Connect keep the feature on 99% of the time.

What they're saying: "We're working to make rideshare better for all people and hope this feature brings more choice, opportunity and peace of mind for women and nonbinary riders and drivers in the Austin area," Audrey Liu, EVP and Head of Design at Lyft, said in a statement.

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