Lyft is a great option when you’re traveling to the airport. But with more Lyft ride types than ever, it’s not always obvious which service will be right for your situation.
If you have a larger group or lots of luggage, a regular Lyft might not have enough room!
Read on to learn how Lyft works at the airport and how you can get the best ride for your travel situation.
Which Lyft ride type should you use for airport trips?
- One person with luggage: Lyft
- Two people with 1 checked back and carry-on luggage: Lyft
- Two people with large luggage: Lyft XL
- Three people: Lyft XL
- Four+ people with luggage: 2 Lyfts or 2 XLs
Is Lyft available at your airport?
You can use Lyft at most major airports in the US. Check this page at Lyft.com to confirm that Lyft serves the airport you want to visit.
Be aware that some smaller airports might prohibit Lyft pickups and drop-offs.
Another way to check if Lyft is available at an airport is to enter the airport as a destination. If travel is restricted to the airport, you will see an alert letting you know the ride isn’t possible.
The Lyft app will ask you to select your drop-off terminal when setting up a ride at many airports. If you’re not sure, you can skip the option but make sure to verify your terminal with your driver once your ride is underway.
Rideshare pickup areas
Many larger airports use a special rideshare pickup point that may be different from the usual arrivals location.
Look out for special instructions when you request your ride and follow signs in the airport. The app will usually direct you to a designated pickup area.
For example, when you land at LAX, you must take a shuttle or walk to the special ‘LAXit’ spot to get a Lyft. A Lyft will not pick you up at the arrivals curb.
How much will your airport ride cost?
Enter your ride into the Lyft app to get an upfront estimate. That will give you a general idea of the cost of a ride, but keep in mind that real-time conditions could increase or decrease the ride cost.
Lyft airport fees
Many airports charge a transportation fee that is charged to Lyft riders. The fee is included in your upfront fare estimate, and your ride receipt will let you know exactly how much the fee was.
Do Lyft drivers help with your luggage?
Lyft drivers are not required to help you load or unload your luggage, but many drivers will offer to help if they see you approach their car with bags in hand.
When you request a premium service like Lyft Preferred or Lyft Lux, your driver will almost always help with luggage.
Here are the signals to look out for: When you walk up to a car carrying luggage, many drivers will get out of their vehicle and meet you at the trunk to help you.
If they pop the trunk and wait in the driver’s seat, that’s your signal to load the luggage yourself.
The best Lyft ride type for different situations
The last thing you want on a hectic travel day is for the wrong type of car to show up. Here’s how to order a vehicle for different group sizes and luggage scenarios.
Lyft & Preferred: For groups up to 3
A regular Lyft is the best option when riding solo or with up to 3 people.
Lyft and Preferred will have room for approximately two checked bags and one or two carry-ons.
If your group of 3 has lots of luggage, upgrade to a Lyft XL.
Lyft XL: For larger groups or when you have lots of luggage
Lyft XL is the best ride to order when you have a larger group, or if you have lots of luggage.
A Lyft XL can accommodate 6—and sometimes 7—passengers or a group of 4 carrying lots of luggage.
You should upgrade to an XL if you think that the people and luggage in your group can’t fit into the average sedan, like a Toyota Prius or Camry.
Lux, Lux Black, Lux Black XL: When you’re willing to pay more
Lyft Lux, Black, and Black XL are premium services that cost significantly more than a regular Lyft or Lyft XL. So if you want luxury and plenty of cargo space, go for a Lux Black XL.
The premium services are the right option when you’re willing to pay more for a nicer vehicle and the most professional drivers.
Scheduling a Lyft ride to the airport
For an important ride to the airport, you might want to schedule your Lyft ride in advance.
To schedule a ride, input your pickup and drop-off locations, then tap the calendar button near the bottom of the screen.
Pick a date and time for your pickup, then confirm your details.
Drivers can accept scheduled rides ahead of time, but you will only receive information about your driver and their vehicle around 15 minutes before your scheduled pickup window.
Note that you will be charged a $10 fee if you cancel a scheduled less than an hour before the scheduled pickup window.
Are scheduled Lyft rides reliable enough for important airport trips?
Scheduled Lyfts are generally reliable, but Lyft does not guarantee that you will be matched with a driver when you schedule a ride.
Often, the reliability of a scheduled ride depends on your city and the time of the ride.
If you are in a larger city, Lyft can find you a driver anytime.
But if you’re in a smaller city and you want a ride in the early morning hours, there’s a chance that the app won’t find a driver for you.
Make sure to keep an eye on the app at least 20 minutes before your pickup time to ensure you are matched with a driver.
If you aren’t matched with a driver at least 10 minutes before you need to be picked up, try requesting an Uber or other ride service.
Other options for airport rides
Lyft is a reliable option for the airport. But if you have an airport trip that you absolutely can’t miss and you don’t want to take your chances with an on-demand service, try a more traditional transportation company.
Black car services like Blacklane and GroundLink will assign you a driver long in advance. Their drivers specialize in pre-arranged rides.
Uber is another good backup if your Lyft request isn’t finding a match quickly enough.