By McKenna Moore
August 23, 2018

Popular ride-hailing service Lyft said this week that it would provide discounted and free rides during this year’s U.S. midterm elections to encourage people to vote.

Nonvoters are usually less affluent than voters, according to a study by Pew Research Center, which likely makes transportation less accessible to them.

For that reason, Lyft will offer riders half-off rides booked anywhere in the U.S. on November 6. Organizations like Vote.org and TurboVote will help distribute a nationwide 50% off code that can be used within the Lyft app. The company says it will also provide free rides through nonpartisan, nonprofit partners like Voto Latino to help members of underserved communities who historically have had a harder time getting to the polls.

Mike Masserman, Lyft’s head of social impact, said that the company’s service is now available in all 50 states, with statewide coverage in 48 states. Ninety-five percent of the American population will have access to these promotions, he said.

In addition to the rides, Lyft is working to register people to vote as National Voter Registration Day approaches on September 25. The company plans to distribute information about registration as well as key issues at Lyft Hub locations. It will also use its app and social media accounts to remind passengers of registration deadlines and Election Day.

Lyft also plans to educate its drivers as well as its employees. It’s a nonpolitical effort, Masserman said. “It’s absolutely essential that we will be nonpartisan in doing this,” he said. “We want to make sure everyone’s voice is heard in this election.”

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