Lyft is rolling out a car rental service

Posted at 8:24 AM, Dec 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-16 10:24:53-05

Lyft has spent years battling Uber in the ride-hailing market. Now, it’s taking on Hertz and Avis, too.

The company announced a new service called Lyft Rentals on Thursday, which allows users to rent cars for up to two weeks. A sedan in San Francisco was available for $35 per day on Thursday, but prices vary significantly depending on the day and time of booking and could go up to $149 per day on the weekend.

Lyft Rentals will initially be available only in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area, where the company has been testing them for a few months. It says it won’t hit customers with mileage-based charges and extra refueling costs that other car rental companies add on, boasting of “no lines, hidden fees or last-minute vehicle model changes” in a blog post published Thursday.

Lyft will also give riders credits of up to $20 each way for rides to and from its rental lots — two in Los Angeles and one each in San Francisco and Oakland. Users can rent a Mazda 3 sedan or a Mazda CX-5 SUV in Los Angeles and can choose between a Volkswagen Passat or a Volkswagen Atlas SUV in the Bay Area.

In its release, Lyft marketed the service as useful for things like moving and errands. However, it is currently offering only daily rates, so someone using the car for only a few hours will still have to pay for a full day.

Lyft declined to comment on how many cars it currently has available. The company is also offering various insurance plans that cover the car, the driver and third parties, respectively.