DENVER (KDVR) — Lyft and Uber rides are costing more and— depending on the time of travel— longer wait times are being reported. There’s currently more demand for fewer drivers, according to industry insiders.
“A little shocked, yes,” said an Uber passenger named David as he saw the cost of his ride home from Denver International Airport on Tuesday. David’s trip home from DIA jumped from his typical $35 to $70.
The issue is playing out nationwide. In the Denver area, it’s a double whammy that includes limited public transit. The perfect storm has people feeling trapped.
Jackie, who was traveling to Colorado Springs from Denver on Tuesday, said she usually pays around $100 one way on Uber or Lyft.
“Now it’s about $300,” she said. “So a little surprised by that price, but I’ve got to get home somehow.”
Jackie said she paid $100 extra for the convenience of a shorter wait, but added the standard Lyft was still double the normal cost.
Customers are also reporting longer wait times, especially early in the morning and late at night. During the height of the pandemic, there was less demand on ride sharing apps. The drop in business forced drivers to find other gigs or collect unemployment.
Lyft said it is working to meet a big increase in demand thanks to more people being vaccinated. To do this, Lyft said it’s offering more incentives for drivers to get back on the road.
“As Denver moves to fully reopening, we’re seeing riders return to Uber. And we’re seeing demand grow at a faster pace than our driver supply. We are currently working to get drivers back onto the road—announcing in April a $250 million stimulus. This stimulus included higher wages and guaranteed incentives. We’re hoping that these financial incentives will bring drivers back to the platform and respond to increased demand,” an Uber spokesperson told FOX31.
Riders in the Denver area have also reported issues traveling to and from local businesses. Also, longer waits for app-based food deliveries are being reported.