My Experience Using Via, an Uber/Lyft Competitor in NYC…I Sort of Loved It

Late last week I finally tried out the app Via, it’s an Uber/Lyft competitor here in New York and by far the cheapest non subway/bus option. The service costs just $5 ($5.44 w/ tax) and you receive your first two rides free. The service is similar to uberPOOL and Lyft Line, it’s essentially a ride sharing service and you will not have your own private car. Here are my experiences:

  1. Midtown West to Upper East
    • Waiting time: 6 1/2 minutes at 6:45 PM
    • Number of co-riders: We picked up only one on the way (a pretty long ride for only one other pick-up)
    • Car Type: Lincoln Navigator
    • Total Cost: $5.44 (but free as my first ride)
  2. Midtown East to Lower East Side
    • Waiting time: 9 minutes at 7:15 PM
    • Number of co-riders: 2
    • Car Type: Ford Explorer
    • Total Cost: $5.44 (but free again as my second ride)

I was really happy with both of these Via experiences and I was pleasantly surprised that we picked up only one or two other passengers on these relatively long trips. My driver told me that it’s rare to pick up any more than 2 other passengers (have you had a similar experience?). Note that service is only available Monday-Friday from 6:30AM-9:00PM south of 110th Street. The service DOES ALLOW you to use your pre-tax dollars!

Via Map

If you’re new to the app, you can obtain $10 worth of credit by downloading the app from the iOS or Android app store and then entering the following promo code – pointmetot4u7.  When signing up, simply enter the code in the promo / referral code section. We’ll both receive the bonus and as always I’m grateful for your support of the blog!

Via Sign UpIMG_3852

To ride:

  • Open your app when you’re ready to roll.
  • Use the map or address bar to select your pickup and dropoff locations.
  • Walk to the pickup location indicated in the app (usually the nearest corner). You’ll need to be there when your Via-cle arrives.

What you can expect:

  • A flat fare: $5 plus tax when you pre-pay; $7 plus tax if you pay per ride. Pre-paying is easy! Just purchase Ride Credit in your app. (As a new member, your first 5 rides are always $5, but you’ll need Ride Credit to keep paying $5 after your 5th ride.)
  • An accurate estimate of your wait time (typically under 10 minutes).
  • Professional, TLC-licensed drivers.
  • Recaptured time while you wait for your pickup (as opposed to hustling to find a cab or trekking to the subway).
  • An island of calm amid the chaos of NYC.

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