As more people visit Las Vegas, the demand for Uber and Lyft rides is increasing. This has resulted in delays for both companies, as well as a dangerous trend riders may not be aware of—strangers offering rides.
Extended wait time, unexpected cancellations, and no-shows are issues that rideshare drivers and passengers are dealing with in the Las Vegas area. Multiple passengers spoke with 8 News Now, confirming the struggle.
One local rideshare user, David Franz-Robinson, said, “We literally sat there for 20 minutes before we even got an accepted ride. We were trying both on our phones with both Uber and Lyft up, and no rides were available.” Another local rideshare user, Deborah Sheldon, said, “I see them, and I see the driver, and then all of a sudden, it says we found you another driver. On Saturday, I was supposed to go to work for a little while, and I waited over 2.5 hours.”
A number of factors are contributing to the delays, including:
- The COVID-19 pandemic
- Inadequate pay and unemployment benefits
- Rising gas prices
As a result of the increased demand, strangers not affiliated with any rideshare company are offering rides. One local rideshare driver has witnessed strangers offering rides for cash on multiple occasions: “I picked up a couple from the airport yesterday that said a gentleman was walking around hollering in the crowd $40 for rides to the Strip. In four years, I’ve gotta say that’s something I’ve only seen within the last month, maybe. […] A red vehicle with out-of-state license plates and a stick on the back pulled up [at a rideshare pickup area]. The gentleman was walking around, spoke to a couple of people until he eventually found somebody that was willing to go in the car with him and probably paid him cash to take him wherever he was going.”
A new age fleet transportation company, Kaptyn, is looking for Uber and Lyft drivers to have honest communication with each other: “Drivers have to be understanding of what they are coming back to from a workforce standpoint, and I think we all have to do a better job as employers in this category, to be explaining to the drivers and educating them about the value propositions that we can provide. Kaptyn is not a rideshare company. It is a luxury, private car service with 150 full-time drivers.