Although Election Day is still around the corner, tens of millions of Americans have already voted. Early voting is open in most states, and many voters have taken advantage. However, about one-third of Americans still plan to vote in person on election day, and early voting locations will remain open through November 3rd. To help make sure voters can get to the polls safely and inexpensively, rideshare companies are giving people rides to the polls for free or cheap.
All in all, initiatives like these make voting easier, which in turn makes our democracy function better. Getting to the polls can be difficult for many Americans under normal circumstances, and this year has only added more problems. If your or someone you know needs a free or discounted ride to the polls, luckily options are available.
Rides to the Polls
Lyft is offering 50 percent off any one ride to a polling place or ballot dropoff. Users should enter code 2020VOTE for the discount, which applies up to $10. The Lyft “Voter Access Program” is part of a partnership with a number of national groups, including the National Federation of the Blind and the Black Women’s Roundtable. Lyft’s discounts apply to any rideshare bikes or scooters as well, so you have plenty of options!
Uber too is offering 50 percent off rides but will discount your round trip to and from the polls. Uber users are eligible for up to $7 off the ride to their polling place, and $7 on the way back. In addition, the company is leveraging its Uber Eats resources and partnering with Pizza to the Polls to deploy food trucks in 25 cities near polling places. Since early voting sites have already experienced long lines, Uber’s plan is inventive and encouraging. The company is also giving employees election day off to make time to vote.
“As we look ahead to this year’s election, we are committed to doing our part to make sure every citizen has access to vote,” Uber’s CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement. “We hope that by giving people the ability to easily register to vote, request an absentee ballot and get to the polls via the Uber and Uber Eats apps, independent workers — and everyone who uses our platform — will have a stronger voice in our democracy.”
Lime, which allows users to rent scooters and bicycles in big cities, is offering free travel to and from polling places. Users can enter code LIMETOPOLLS2020 for two free 30-minute rides on any Lime vehicle. Lime’s program stems from a partnership with When We All Vote, a nonpartisan voter registration organization co-chaired by former First Lady Michelle Obama.
The Bottom Line
Many seniors and disabled Americans live very far from their polling place and have few ways to travel there. That’s true in normal years, and even more so in 2020. With that in mind, companies willing to provide cheap or free transportation to polling locations are providing a critical service.
Although these are nationwide options, there are plenty of local initiatives too. Some public transportation services are waiving travel costs on election day, for instance. Voting may not be easy this year, but it is critical. If you need help getting to your polling place, take advantage of some of these programs and get a free ride to the polls!
See Also: How to Vote By Mail in the 2020 Election