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Lyft At LAX: How Pickups and Dropoffs Work

Last updated: January 11, 2022
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vector graphic showing passengers getting into a Lyft vehicle and a Lyft at LAX map and car illustration

Airports are one of the most frequent Lyft destinations requested through the app.

Lyft drivers help alleviate a significant amount of transport congestion around the arrival and departure gates, as well as long-term airport parking.

Since Lyft launched in 2012, it disrupted the taxi industry and broke up the monopoly creating high prices for transportation.

LAX was one of the first locations to partner with and advertise Lyft as an option.

Keep reading to learn more about how using Lyft at LAX works.

Is There Lyft at LAX?

Yes, there is Lyft at LAX.

Rather than paying for parking at the airport or begging a friend for a ride, you can order Lyft both to and from the airport.

What Lyft Services Are Available at LAX?

If you are familiar with Lyft, you can expect most of the typical ride options at LAX.

These include the following:

Lyft Standard

The vehicle seats up to four and is a standard coupe or sedan.

This option is the regular, preselected service for the basic ride.

Lyft XL

Seats up to six and is usually a crossover, mid-size, or full-size SUV.

This service is the next step up from basic as it fits more people.

Lux

This is the baseline for luxury, a fancy black car with all the stops pulled out.

This option also comes with a top-rated, specially trained driver to make your experience special.

Lux Black

You can get a luxury car in chic black that seats four with this option.

The driver is a top-rated and specially trained Lyft worker who lets you travel in style.

Lux Black XL

The final option is Lyft’s largest luxury option.

It seats six.

Arrive in style in a solid black SUV driven by a trained, highly-reviewed driver to provide you with an excellent and memorable ride to or from the airport.  

You won’t be able to use Lyft Shared, Preferred, or Priority Pickup.

However, the options above give ample space for you, fellow passengers, and luggage.

How Does Lyft Work at LAX?

vector graphic showing passengers getting into a Lyft vehicle and a Lyft at LAX map and car illustration

Traveling with Lyft is easy.

You will need to be patient when you use Lyft at LAX, as the airport is undergoing some significant remodeling that’s complicated pickups.

However, you can simply download the app, enable your location, specify your destination and the type of car you’d like, and then wait for pickup.

Lyft’s systems will link you with a nearby driver that fits your specifications, and you’ll be on your way.

You receive a message with information about the car and driver, reviews, the estimated cost for your ride, and the time expected to destination.

From the app, you’ll be able to pay, tip, and review your driver, and set up additional rides in the future.

Many people find that this solution takes a lot of the stress out of arrival or departure day during vacations.  

Lyft at LAX: Pickups

Before you schedule your Lyft ride pickup, make sure to claim your baggage and get yourself to the pickup zone.

Remember, if you miss your ride by more than five minutes, you’ll be charged a fee.

The pickup zone for Lyft at LAX is near Terminal 1.

The actual lot in which you will meet your driver is called LAX-it (Said as LA Exit), and it has bold green signs to match the green shuttle buses.

You can walk over to the pickup location with your luggage or catch the LAX-IT Shuttle to the lot.

If you choose to use the complimentary shuttle, wait until you are on the shuttle bus before requesting your ride to ensure the driver doesn’t leave before you arrive.

The shuttle is outside of baggage claim on the lower arrival level.

Look for the green LAX-it signs.

Lyft at LAX: Drop-offs

LAX has dropoffs separated by the airline at the upper Departures level.

Request a car through the app, and then let your driver know which airline you’re boarding, and they will take you directly to the departure terminal for that flight.

Look at the schedule for your check-in and traffic, and ensure you request your car with plenty of time to account for traffic and other roadside delays.

Is It Better to Lyft or Taxi from LAX?

The answer to this question comes down to personal preference.

It also depends on the terminal you arrive at and how much luggage you carry.

Consider whether you want to walk (or shuttle) a few blocks to the LAX-it lot for rideshare services.

Even though you may need to walk a short distance, the ride will be cleaner and more secure than a taxi ride.  

However, if you have a lot of luggage, you can hail a taxi in the curbside pickup areas and save yourself some hassle.

However, the ride may not be as comfortable as Lyft.

Whichever option you choose, there is ample signage and plenty of airport staff to help you find your way.

If you decide to walk to the LAX-it, you have a high chance of passing a coffee truck or food cart on the way.

Tips for Getting Dropped off Successfully

Dropoff at LAX is the same for taxi or Lyft services.

Let your driver know which airline you’re flying with, and they’ll bring you to the appropriate dropoff terminal in the main horseshoe loop.

Below are a few tips to help dropoff run smoothly:

  • Have your bags packed in an easy-to-carry or roll method
  • Know your airline name
  • Have your tickets ready to go as soon as you offload from your car.

Alternatives to Lyft at LAX

If your party is too large or funding doesn’t provide for a Lyft ride, you may search for an alternative option.

Shuttles

LAX offers the FlyAway shuttle, which leaves the airport and stops at four stations around the city near significant bus and train terminals for the local public transit system.

These stations are in Van Nuys, Union Station, Hollywood, and Longbeach.

The transit system is less expensive but more time-consuming than hiring a Lyft.

You can also book a shuttle to haul your party to your home or hotel if you’re traveling with several others.

Taxis

As described above, hailing a taxi or requesting a ride from a taxi service is similar to the rideshare services offered but less high-tech in most cases.

When you arrive at LAX, you will have the chance to call for a cab and wait in the pickup zone for one to come that can accommodate your needs.

You cannot hail taxis with a mobile app, so you’re less likely to encounter shared data or overcharges from system glitches.

Taxis are comparable in cost and service levels.

Train

The LA Metro has a robust public transit system.

The train is easily caught near one of the four FlyAway shuttle stations and can take you to nearly any part of the city from there.

Pubic transit takes a bit of planning but can save a lot of stress and struggle to navigate an unfamiliar city, find parking, and avoid traffic.

You can purchase tickets for the public transit system online with LA Metro TAP.

When to Avoid Taking Lyft to or from LAX

As with most airports, there will be peak times when larger flights are coming in or out and low times when there are fewer flights.

There is always the chance of delays, but the plane isn’t going to wait for you.

Ensure you plan your transportation to accommodate traffic and onboarding processes.

It’s better to wait in your terminal for a bit of extra time than to miss your flight.

There are certain hours that Lyft may charge additional fees to account for rush hour traffic or heavy construction.

These peak hour chargers will change by the day and the density of flights in and out of LAX.

Your best option is to research and pre-plan your transport.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you still have some questions, keep reading to find the answer to common inquiries.

How should Lyft drivers pick up passengers at the LAX airport?

As a Lyft driver, you will be directed to the LAX-it lot to wait for your passengers.

A recent addition to the Lyft app uses a four-digit PIN to match drivers with riders more efficiently.

When is the best time to drive Lyft at LAX?

Surge times are reliable during rush hour, so 7-9 am and 4-7 pm.

These time slots will increase your pay rate per rider.

Driving regularly near the airport or registering for the airport driver queue will also put you in line for higher fares.

How much is Lyft from LAX to downtown?

The cost of a Lyft from LAX to Downtown will vary by size and lux level of your ride, as well as the time of day.

You can expect to pay between $40-45 for a base model or $120-130 for the Lyft Lux Black XL.

The ride typically takes 20-30 min based on traffic.

Wrapping Up

Travel comes down to planning.

Regardless of your method of transport, planning accordingly will save a lot of time and stress.

No matter the time of day your flight boards, Lyft is ready to take you to or from LAX during your travels.

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