Out on the town and you had a couple of drinks. Knowing San Diego’s drunk driving laws, you decide it’s best not to drive home and chance getting a DUI. You ask yourself, “How am I going to get home?” You can take the trolley or the bus; however, while these options are economical, their schedules are limited and they only travel to certain parts of the county. And, it can take 1 1/2 hours to get somewhere by bus when it would only take 10-20 minutes by car.
So the next option is a taxi, but they are very expensive, making it unaffordable for many. In addition, money is exchanged between the driver and rider making it a less safe option. And, if you are not in an area where taxis are driving by, you are forced to call for a cab and often they do not show up.
The best third party transportation option San Diego has is the rideshare companies, including Lyft, Uber, and Sidecar. They are easy, safe, efficient, and economical for riders and they employ many people in our community.
In order to use one of the services, just download their app onto your smartphone, enter your credit card number for billing purposes, and then in their app hit request a car. The driver uses their personal car to pick you up and transport you to your destination. Your credit card is automatically billed and the rates are up to 40% less than a taxi fare.
I do not know of any statistics on the decrease of DUI’s due to people taking rideshares, but conversations with friends make me believe that many people are opting to use these new services after drinking alcohol instead of driving home and taking a chance.
Taxi companies and their drivers have been upset with these new companies, as they are cutting into their profits. They lobbied Sacramento to add more regulations to the ridesharing industry in an attempt to force rideshares out of business, (see Assembly Bill 612). Instead, they should use their energy to look at their business model and make changes so they can stay in business in this new technological world.