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Uber and Lyft expand rideshare services statewide

Posted at 10:53 PM, Jul 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-05 06:56:22-04

CROWLEY — Rideshare services like Uber and Lyft are now available in smaller communities across the state.

Previously, they were only allowed to operate in larger cities like New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Lafayette.

Other communities are excited about being able to hail a ride and the potential economic impacts.

"If you live in rural Louisiana, chances are it's really tough to get a ride," said Amy Thibodeaux, President and CEO of the Acadia Parish Chamber of Commerce.

Their chances just got easier.

With the new state law, people in smaller towns can now catch a ride by using their smartphone.

Thibodeaux says that before the law took effect, transportation was limited.

"Not only will they have access to additional schooling and other opportunities within the region and the parish, also, I can imagine having some of our local residents who are going to see a concert at the Cajundome and having dinner and getting a safe ride home," she said.

Thibodeaux is also hoping ridesharing opportunities will boost the local economy.

"Having someone not only get access to maybe a potential job as a driver or get access to the university or other options for healthcare or just reaching other parts of the community or other cities within our parish," said Thibodeaux.

Uber tells KATC's Jordan Lippincott that wait times for rides may be longer than usual in new service areas as people learn about the app. They say the reliability for rides will increase in coming weeks.

Uber and Lyft are available for download on your iPhone or Android in the App Store or Google Play Store.