Lyft’s program that matches female and nonbinary riders and drivers is now available nationwide

Lyft’s Women+ Connect Feature: Enhancing Safety and Comfort for Riders

Whether you are pre-booking a ride from the airport or reserving a car with child seats already installed, ride-hailing services like Lyft regularly add new features to make rides easier and more efficient. On Tuesday, Lyft announced its Women+ Connect feature that matches female and nonbinary riders and drivers is now available nationwide.

According to a recent internal survey, only 23% of Lyft drivers are women despite nearly half of Lyft riders being women. With safety a priority for many travelers, Lyft began putting power back in the hands of riders by launching its Women+ Connect program in September 2023.

The program debuted in Chicago, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco, and San Jose, California. Women+ Connect is now available in 240 markets nationwide, thanks to the positive response from both riders and drivers.

Lyft reports that drivers using Women+ Connect keep the feature on 99% of the time, with nearly 7 million Women+ Connect rides completed to date. Women+ Connect is also one of Lyft’s highest-rated driver features.

“I’ve noticed a change in the riders I’ve picked up since using Women+ Connect, particularly during the weekends. On Friday and Saturday, I’m pretty much just driving women at night and I just feel safer. Since it launched, I’ve been telling every single one of my riders (even including men!) about Women+ Connect, and they’re all so excited about it,” Gabriela, a driver in Chicago, said in a blog post announcing the program’s expansion.

Women+ Connect allows drivers and riders to feel safer and more confident by matching female and nonbinary drivers with female and nonbinary riders. Lyft announced in the same blog post that this is a “highly-requested feature” designed to allow women and nonbinary people to get where they’re going more comfortably and confidently.

“Drivers and riders asked for it, and Lyft is the only rideshare company with Women+ Connect in the US,” Lyft CEO David Risher said. “When rideshare is better for women and nonbinary people, rideshare is better for everyone. We’re proud to bring the comfort and camaraderie of Women+ Connect to millions across the country.”

Developed in partnership with the Human Rights Campaign, It’s On Us, the National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives, and the National Sheriffs’ Association, Women+ Connect is simple to use for riders and drivers. All that’s required is to turn on the preference within the Lyft app to prioritize matches with other nearby female and nonbinary riders.

Know, though, that Women+ Connect is a preference and not a guarantee. The company will do its best to match you with other female and nonbinary drivers, but there may be times when a match isn’t possible.

Women+ Connect is one of many features Lyft has put into place to keep riders safe when they request a ride. With “Smart Trip Check-In,” Lyft monitors rides for long stops or deviations from the planned route and will contact you to see if you need help during your ride. Lyft also gives riders the ability to share their real-time location with friends and family and see the name, profile photo, and ratings of their driver as soon as they are matched.

In conclusion, Lyft’s Women+ Connect feature is a step in the right direction towards enhancing safety and comfort for all riders. By prioritizing matches between female and nonbinary riders and drivers, Lyft is making strides in creating a more inclusive and secure ride-hailing experience. Riders can now feel more confident and at ease knowing that their safety is a top priority for Lyft. With the expansion of Women+ Connect to more markets nationwide, Lyft is setting a new standard for safety and inclusivity in the ride-hailing industry.

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