Have you ever had an early morning flight to catch and wished there were a way to schedule a Lyft ride in advance? This would save you lots of stress and help you get more sleep the night before. It would also guarantee extra peace of mind knowing that a ride would be there for you on-time.
In response to user demand, Lyft has added this feature to their app. It’s now possible to schedule a Lyft ride in advance, and it only takes a few easy steps. In this guide, we’re going to show you how to schedule a Lyft ride, as well as address some common questions about the process.
- Reasons to Schedule a Lyft Ride
- How to Schedule a Lyft Ride
- How to Cancel a Scheduled Lyft Ride
- Schedule Lyft FAQ
Reasons to Schedule a Lyft Ride
You’re probably familiar with how Lyft is a convenient way to get an on-demand ride, but why would you want to schedule one in advance? There are a few possible reasons that we’ve identified, though you may have your own as well.
Probably the most common reason to schedule a Lyft ride is to catch an early morning flight. If you have a flight departing at 6 a.m. and you need to be at the airport by 4 a.m., the last thing you want to worry about during your 3 a.m. wakeup call is scheduling your airport ride. Not only is it stressful to do this, but there’s a risk that a driver won’t be available. When you schedule a pickup in advance, these concerns are irrelevant.
Another reason to schedule a Lyft ride would be the need to get to an important business meeting at a specific time. With any kind of critical event, you don’t want to deal with the risk of being late because you had to wait 20 minutes after requesting a Lyft ride during rush hour. Scheduling a ride in advance means that your request is already in Lyft’s system.
A final reason to schedule a Lyft ride is to get a cheaper price. When you schedule a ride in advance, the price you see is the price you’ll pay. This can be useful if you know you’re going to need to travel during Lyft Prime Time, when fares can be higher. By scheduling a ride in advance, you won’t have to worry about current demand or traffic conditions affecting your fare.
For instance, perhaps you’re planning to meet some friends for drinks after work on a Friday. You know you want to take Lyft, and you know what time you want to leave. But you also know that you’ll be traveling during rush hour, a time when Lyft fares tend to be higher. By scheduling your ride in advance, you won’t have to contend with any spikes in prices caused by a shortage of drivers and a high demand for rides.
How to Schedule a Lyft Ride
Now that you understand some reasons to schedule a Lyft ride, let’s look at how to do it. The process requires just a few steps:
1. Set your pickup location
Open the Lyft app. Lyft will automatically use your current location. If you’d like to set a different pickup location, you can type it in.
2. Set your drop-off location
Next, you’ll need to enter your drop-off location. Type in an address or pick a location on the map.
3. Schedule your ride
Once you have your drop-off location set, tap the “Schedule” button on the menu that appears:
Then, choose the time and date that you want.
Note that you’ll see a range of pickup times based on the time you choose. This is because Lyft cannot guarantee a precise pickup time, only a range of times. If you’re concerned about being late, then pick an earlier time to be safe.
When you’re happy with your pickup time, tap “Set pickup time.”
Finally, tap “Schedule” to confirm.
4. Be ready for your driver at your pickup time and location
Don’t forget about your scheduled ride. Lyft will send you reminders leading up to the ride to make sure you remember it.
Note that it is possible for your driver to arrive early. If this happens, your driver will wait for you until the scheduled pickup time. If your driver is here and you need a few more minutes, it’s courteous to contact them through the app so that they know why they’re waiting.
How to Cancel a Scheduled Lyft Ride
While scheduling a ride in advance is convenient, sometimes your plans change. In these cases, you may need to cancel your scheduled Lyft ride. This requires only a couple steps.
First, open the Lyft app. Then, tap the calendar icon in the upper righthand corner to view a list of your scheduled rides:
To cancel a scheduled ride, tap “Cancel ride.”
Then, confirm the cancellation by tapping “Cancel.”
Note that you won’t have to pay a cancellation fee for canceling a scheduled ride, unless the following apply:
- You cancel the ride after a driver has been matched,
- The driver is on their way to pick you up, and
- The driver is scheduled to arrive within the designated pickup window
This is the same cancellation policy that applies to all Lyft rides.
Schedule Lyft FAQ
To conclude this guide, let’s address some common questions about scheduling Lyft rides:
1. Does Lyft guarantee I’ll get a ride?
No, Lyft cannot guarantee that a ride will be available. However, it’s rare that a scheduled ride isn’t available.
2. Does Lyft charge a fee for scheduled rides?
No, Lyft does not charge any fees for scheduled rides. In fact, as we discussed above, scheduled rides can often cost less than rides scheduled in real-time during rush hour or other times of high demand for Lyft rides.
3. Where are scheduled rides available?
Lyft doesn’t provide any specific details on this. They do say, “Scheduled rides are not available in all regions.” To see if scheduled rides are available in your location, look for the calendar icon when you’re confirming your ride details.
4. What kinds of Lyft rides can I schedule?
Currently, only standard Lyft rides are available to schedule. To get a Lyft XL, Lyft Lux, or other type of Lyft ride, you have to schedule it in real time.
5. How far in advance can I schedule a Lyft ride?
You can schedule Lyft rides up to seven days in advance.
6. Can I request a specific Lyft driver when I schedule?
No. As with any Lyft ride, your driver is matched with you based on their proximity to your location. You cannot request a specific driver.
7. Does Uber have a scheduled rides feature?
Yes, Uber has a very similar feature. You can learn about it in our guide to scheduling an Uber. It works the same way, though it allows you to request rides up to 30 days in advance instead of just seven.
Get a Lyft on Your Schedule
We hope you now understand how to schedule a Lyft ride in advance. The process is simple and very convenient. Curious how you can make money as a Lyft driver? Check out our step-by-step guide.
Brett Helling is the owner of Ridester.com. He has been a rideshare driver since early 2012, having completed hundreds of trips for companies including Uber, Lyft, and Postmates. In 2014 he acquired Ridester.com to share his experiences with other drivers. His insights are regularly quoted by publications such as Forbes, Vice, CNBC, and more. He is currently working on a book about working in the Gig Economy, expanding his skill set beyond the rideshare niche. Read more about Brett here.