Rebecca Bernard
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Ring in 2020 With New Uber and Lyft Fees

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Photo: Pixabay

If you’re headed out tonight to celebrate the arrival of 2020, be ready to pay a bit more to get home safely with Uber and Lyft. Not only will there probably be surge pricing after the ball falls, but new fees on ride-share journeys will go into effect.


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To be absolutely clear, if you don’t want to pay the surge rate or possible new rate increases on your ride home tonight, do not drive intoxicated. Do some research now to see if your area has activated a free safe ride program for the holiday, program the number of a cab service in your phone, or arrange for a designated driver.

Chicago is a great city to celebrate in, but if you’re traveling by ride-share car in the Windy City’s core downtown in the New Year from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., your ride with an app will have a $3 tax added to the bill. Head outside of the designated core or use the carpool option and that gets dropped to $1.25. I encourage you to look up the new rules yourself because there are a lot of time windows and location details to comb through.

If you live in California, Mashable reports that Uber and Lyft drivers are getting a promotion on January 1 as AB5 becomes law. It’s great news if you earn money through the gig economy because the new regulations mean you’ll be treated like an employee with rights as opposed to an independent contractor. However, the ride-share apps aren’t happy about the shift and it’s possible ride rates will rise as a result.


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That law affects California as a whole, but if you’re also in San Francisco a new tax will take effect as soon as the calendars switch over. Expect your ride home and the rest of your trips in 2020 to bear a 3.25 percent tax. If you use the Uber Pool or other shared-ride options, that tax drops to just 1.5 percent.

When you head back to Washington, D.C. after the New Year, be ready for increased fees to travel from the two main airports into the city. In the past, the district slapped a $4 ride-hailing surcharge on rides from their airports, but when the clock chimes midnight that grows to $5.

These are by no means the only fee and tax changes hitting Uber and Lyft as we welcome 2020. Consider checking your local news outlets for more details.