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Lyft Removes Ability to Split Fares with Friends

In a move that might have you choosing Uber from now on, Lyft customers are no longer available to split fares with a friend through the ride-sharing app. Lyft abruptly announced that they removed the feature this week.

The company has emailed riders with an update, stating: “We wanted to give you a heads-up that you’re no longer able to split the fare for your ride in the Lyft app.” A spokesperson confirmed this to SmarterTravel without providing any additional explanation, saying only that “Split Pay is no longer available in the app.”

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The spokesperson did say that Lyft “[will] have more to share next year about even easier and smoother payment options going forward.” Uber, for comparison, currently allows riders to split fares for a 25-cent fee per person.

While ending Lyft’s split fare option may not be a huge deal to all Lyft riders, the timing for this is odd to say the least. The holiday season is full of travel to and from airports, train stations, and all sorts of social gatherings where groups are likely to ride together. From the outside, it seems logical to remove or replace the Lyft split fares feature after the holidays.

For fans of the Lyft split feature, it does sound like the company is working on an eventual replacement. This is pure speculation, but perhaps the plan is to partner with Venmo or an existing money transfer app that most people already have, and integrate that service into the Lyft app. In the meantime, riders can use a variety of apps (or cash, of course) to pay each other back. Or they can (and many probably will) just choose Uber instead.

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By Carl Unger

Contributing Editor Carl Unger believes that every trip is worth taking. He loves an extended trip to Europe as much as he enjoys exploring the towns and landscape near home. Basically, you'll find him wherever there is good food, fresh air, and plenty of stories to bring home.

Carl has been writing for SmarterTravel since 2005. His travel writing has also appeared on USA Today and the About.com Boston travel guide.

The Handy Item I Always Pack: "It's not revolutionary, but a small Moleskine notebook is my one travel must-have. It's great for noting things you want to remember and it takes up hardly any space in your bag."

Ultimate Bucket List Experience: "Japan. I'd love to take a month off and visit the cities, temples, and countryside. I'm fascinated by the country's juxtaposition of ancient traditions and modern ambitions."

Travel Motto: “Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” –Terry Pratchett

Aisle, Window, or Middle Seat: "Window."

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