Uber is now allowed to pick up at airport

Uber is joining fellow ride-sharing service Lyft in being able to pick up passengers at Louisville International Airport, starting Thursday.

The Louisville Regional Airport Authority on Wednesday announced the additional service available to airport passengers under a new agreement between the airport agency and Uber Technologies Inc. Uber drivers have previously only had the ability to drop off passengers at the airport.

“We are pleased to welcome Uber as our newest ground transportation business partner,” said Skip Miller, the airport agency’s executive director.

Uber will have two vehicle spaces on the lower arrival level of the commercial curb for passenger pickup. In addition, the company will have a limited staging area in the cell-phone waiting lot.

Passengers who have requested a ride through the mobile Uber app should follow the ground transportation signs inside the terminal and look for the Uber signs and black-painted curb just beyond the red-columned bus-loading area.

Under the agreement with the airport, Uber will pay a $2 trip fee for every pick up from the airport and a monthly business privilege fee of $500. There is not a trip fee paid to the airport for dropping passengers off at the airport.

Uber was founded in 2009 and now is operating in more than 300 cities. It began service in Louisville in mid-2014.

In November, airport officials approved an initial one-year arrangement with another ride-sharing service, Lyft, with similar provisions stipulated in the new Uber deal.  The arrangement gave Lyft two vehicle spaces on the lower level for passenger pickup. Lyft also entered the Louisville market in 2014.

Ride-sharing services fall under different state Transportation Cabinet regulations than taxicab companies.

In addition to the service being offered by the ride-sharing companies, the Louisville airport agency announced in November that beginning Jan. 1, passengers arriving in and leaving from Louisville International will have a new taxi company to choose from – Taxi 7, an all-hybrid cab company.

Taxi 7 is replacing Ready Cab as one of two standard taxi services that patrons can choose from. Currently, Ready Cab and Yellow Cab serve the airport under deals expiring Dec. 31.

The airport will also continue to be served by Yellow Cab, which also won a recent proposal sought by the airport authority for airport cab services, said Trish Burke, Regional Airport Authority spokeswoman. Burke said the airport has traditionally limited the provision of cab service to just two companies.

The initial deals with Yellow Cab and Taxi 7 are for one year, with two, one-year renewal options possible. Under those agreements, both companies for 2016 will pay the authority $1.50 per trip, with a minimum monthly business “privilege fee” of $3,400, the airport said.

Reporter Sheldon S. Shafer can be reached at (502) 582-7089, or via email at sshafer@courier-journal.com.

Source: http://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/local/2015/12/09/uber-now-allowed-louisville-airport/77045190/