More Business Travelers Turn to Uber, Lyft Than Ever Before

sharing economy D.R./Adobe Stock

Ride sharing services like Uber and Lyft continue to gain popularity among corporate business travelers, according to recent research.

The latest SpendSmart report from travel and expense management software provider Certify showed Uber and Lyft rides accounted for 46% of total ground transportation among business travelers in the first quarter of 2016. That’s up 4% from the fourth quarter of 2015.

The SpendSmart report details findings from a survey of more than 9 million business traveler receipts and expenses. The ridesharing findings, specifically, indicate the use of ride-hailing services is at an all-time high among U.S. business travelers. Uber proved to be the top ride-hailing provider in the first quarter, accounting for more than 43% of ground transportation rides, according to the report. However, Lyft is gaining popularity, with rides from the service growing 44% in the first three months of the year, representing 2.5% of all ground transportation transactions.

Personalization seems to be a factor in choosing ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft. According to Certify CEO Robert Neveu, Uber and Lyft also understand business travel is more than just about getting from point A to point B.

"Uber's continued success and Lyft's recent growth with the business travel market is really being driven by three factors: cost, convenience and customer satisfaction,” Neveu said. "These ride-hailing services have perfected a model that allows employees to choose the kind of experience they want when traveling for business while also saving the company a great deal of money in the process.”

Another recent report on business travel also highlights how business travelers are taking more advantage of the “on-demand” services. The report points to Uber and other on-demand options for business travel services as a trend that is “reshaping the travel experience,” and is demanding traditional suppliers to respond by offering their own on-demand options.

Companies that already offer on-demand services are also upgrading their services to respond to growing demands of passengers. Lyft, for instance, recently announced it would begin testing a scheduled pick-up service, allowing business travelers and other riders the chance to schedule a ride up to a day in advance. Passengers can cancel the scheduled ride up to 30 minutes before, without incurring any penalty fees. Last month, Lyft said it would being testing the feature with employees in San Francisco.

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