Last week Uber and Lyft returned to Austin after leaving the city high and dry over a year ago after Austin voted 56% to 44% against Proposition 1 which would have allowed ride-hailing companies to continue using their own background check systems. As of May 7th Austin went ahead with plans to require fingerprint background checks and other regulations. Both Uber and Lyft then announced they will no longer operate in the city as a result of the loss. As the entire city was effected by Uber and Lyft‘s abrupt departure Fasten and RIDE Austin stepped in to fill the car hailing and sharing needs of the city.
Fast forward to a year later and they are now humbly returning to Austin and not with the loving arms they may thought they would have had. It’s true what they say about us Texans Uber and Lyft, do not mess with Texas!
With investors of Silicon Valley dropping millions in lobbying dollars, the Texas legislature voted for HB 100 and against public safety, equality, and the rights of citizens. The bill, HB 100, would override the state’s 20-plus local ordinances and require ride-sharing companies to conduct criminal background and sex offender checks for drivers.
It’s been a full week now of them both entering back into the market and since then the car hailing scene has exploded for customers and drivers. The job postings for Uber and Lyft drivers on craigslist’s are a dime a dozen while Fasten has zilch. Maybe that is because they drivers are loyal and most drivers in Austin are apprehensive to join Lyft or Uber again? What happens if they just up and leave again giving riders and drivers no notice?
Fasten is offering a few incentives while Uber and Lyft try to reclaim Austin. For starters Fasten has a a referrel bonus for riders. When riders sign up with Fasten through the app they will receive a personal referral code to share with friends, family and co-workers to encourage them to ride for less! Every time your promotional code is used by a new Fasten rider, you will be eligible to receive credit off of a single ride. These promotions last 30 days from when your referral takes their second trip.*
Austin voted for mandatory fingerprinting for drivers. Fasten will continue to accept only fingerprinted drivers and charge them just $0.99 per ride instead of 25%.Austinites may not be able to overturn HB 100 legislatively, but they can make it irrelevant economically. Austinites can vote for better driver pay; vote for better corporate ethics and progressive values; vote for local control; vote for safety. They can vote for equality. Big companies can overturn your votes in the Senate. But nobody can take away your right to vote for what you support with every ride you take!*
Though this is just the beginning of them returning to Austin it seems like Uber and Lyft are already starting a ruckus in the city. Time will tell which car hailing and car sharing apps will last in Austin’s competitive market. I vote Fasten!
Source: Fasten, Lyft, Uber, Texas Legistation
*Cited from Fasten