LAX bans rideshare and taxi drivers from terminal pick up

LAX bans rideshare and taxi drivers from terminal pick up

On October 29, the Los Angeles International Airport launched LAX-it: the new way to catch an Uber, Lyft, Opoli, or taxi at LAX. The airport has banned ridesharing companies and taxi drivers from picking up passengers outside its terminals due to worsening congestion at the airport.

Although curbside drop-off is still allowed, arriving passengers now have to take a shuttle bus to Terminal 1’s parking lot to meet their rideshare drivers, and to the main taxi rank on parking lot C to hail a cab.

According to Brian Sumers from Skift, “almost 26,000 rideshare cars in August used the airport’s roadways each day… Rideshare cars account for roughly 27 percent of all commercial traffic at the airport.” Currently, drivers say that on the worst days, it can take 45 minutes to travel from the main entrance through the horseshoe-style central terminal area. A shuttle ride from the airport’s international terminal to the new rideshare lot can take 15 minutes or more – which is expected to decrease with less traffic caused by Lyft and Uber drivers.

LAX is not the only U.S. airport to make changes on pickup areas based on the increase of traffic in the terminals. Seattle-Tacoma has already implemented new practices for both picking up and dropping off; San Francisco has also moved rideshare pick up to a central parking garage, and Boston is similarly working on options.

In LA, the shuttle bus ride will likely be a shot-term solution as the airport is expected to complete its driverless train (automated people mover) project in 2023. The train will connect passengers to all terminals, ground transportation, and a consolidated car rental facility, as well as to the region’s light rail system and other transportation options.

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Sources:, “Los Angeles Airport to End Curbside Pickup for Uber and Lyft” by Jesse Sokolow. Oct 4, 2019, “LAX Leads Airport Stand Against Uber and Lyft Congestion” by Brian Sumers. Oct 03, 2019