UGA Ride Smart, in partnership with Lyft, offers discounted rides to students through a nightly rideshare program.

Program Details

  • 50% discount on qualifying Lyft Standard or Lyft XL rides.
    • discount up to $7.50 per ride*
  • Available 7 days a week from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.
  • Applicable on up to 4 rides per month.
  • Valid on Standard and XL Lyft rides.
    • To receive the discount, only the student ordering the Lyft has to be enrolled in the program. Additional passengers are welcome.
    • Lyft Standard allows for up to 3 riders and Lyft XL allows for up to 5 riders. Students are encouraged to make the most of their rides by traveling in groups whenever possible.
  • Rides must begin or end within the service area.

*Prices may be impacted by distance, traffic, time of day, special events, and prime time surcharges.

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Get Started Service Area Safety Tips FAQs

How to Sign-Up

Each semester, students currently registered for classes will receive an invitation through their UGA email from Lyft to join UGA Ride Smart. You will need to sign up for UGA Ride Smart using the link in that invitation email.

Download the Lyft app and create an account before signing up for the UGA Ride Smart program. If you already have an existing Lyft account, go to your account profile and link it to your UGA email to qualify for discounted rides.

Once you join, the Lyft discount will be applied to your eligible rides.

If you did not receive an invitation email, please check your spam or junk mail folders for the invitation from Lyft. You can also request a new invitation link by filling out this form. Please contact TPS Customer Relations with any additional questions.

Service Area

Rides are offered to or from any destination throughout the greater Athens-Clarke County community as long as the transportation originates or ends within the main UGA Athens Campus, Health Sciences Campus, Veterinary Complex, or one block north of the Arch in downtown Athens.

Riding Smart with Lyft

  • Verify your ride by making sure the license plate number, driver information, and car make and model match what you see in the app.
  • Share your location and route with a friend or loved one from within the Lyft app so they can follow your ride in real-time.
  • Follow the Lyft vehicle on GPS via the app.
  • Ask the driver to say who they are picking up.

Learn more about how to ride smart with Lyft.

App Safety Tools

Phone screen shots of app safety tools

Access 911

For emergency assistance, riders can reach 911 directly from the Lyft app. It will prominently display your current location and vehicle information, including the license plate. This makes it easy for you to inform dispatchers if needed.

Contact a Security Professional

Emergency Help, supported by ADT, is available for all Lyft riders nationwide. With Emergency Help, if a rider ever feels uncomfortable or unsafe, they are able to immediately connect with an ADT security professional silently or by voice for real-time help 24/7.

You can choose how you want ADT to communicate with you from the app:

  • Text
  • Call
  • Alert 911 silently on your behalf

If you choose for ADT to alert 911 on your behalf, authorities can arrive at the user’s live location, equipped with ride details like the vehicle’s make and model, license plate number, and the intended drop-off location.

Predicting When Help Is Needed

Smart Trip Check-In: If a ride looks to have unexplained delays, riders will hear from Lyft asking if they need support from their team — and if necessary, request emergency assistance.

Read more about Lyft’s safety standards and support on their website.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if I am eligible for UGA Ride Smart?

Students become eligible for UGA Ride Smart if they are registered for classes in the current semester. If you drop your classes, you will no longer have UGA Ride Smart credits.

What should I do if I didn’t receive the invitation email from Lyft?

If you did not receive an invitation email, please check your spam or junk mail folders for the invitation from Lyft. You can also request a new invitation link by filling out this form. Please contact TPS Customer Relations with any additional questions.

How much does it cost?

Signing up for UGA Ride Smart is free to eligible students. Riders are responsible for the remaining cost of the ride that is not covered by UGA at the time of service. Keep in mind that prices may be impacted by distance, traffic, time of day, special events, and Prime Time surcharges.

Can I take a UGA Ride Smart trip outside of the greater Athens-Clarke County community?

Yes, as long as you start or end within the designated service area.

Do I have to download the Lyft app to use UGA Ride Smart?

The easiest way to access discounted rides through UGA Ride Smart is by downloading the Lyft app and creating an account with your UGA email or linking your UGA email to your existing account. For more information on how to edit your existing Lyft account, click here.

If a rider does not want to download the Lyft app through the App Store or Google Play, they can book a ride through a web browser on their computer or smart device.

Do I still need to tip the driver?

Students are encouraged to tip their drivers for all rides. Please note that tips will not be covered by UGA and will be paid for by each individual rider.

What if I need to cancel a ride?

UGA does not pay cancelation fees. View Lyft’s cancelation terms here.

How do I get a refund on a ride?

Any ride refund requests should be directed to Lyft Support by the student, either through their Lyft app or online here.

Do I have to use one of my UGA Ride Smart credits if I'm taking a Lyft ride that meets the Ride Smart criteria?

No, you choose to use one of your UGA Ride Smart credits when you book a Lyft ride.

Can I travel with friends?

Students are encouraged to utilize capacity limitations for Standard Lyft rides (up to 3 riders) and Lyft XL rides (up to 5 riders) to travel in groups. This improves rider safety and helps maximize the number of times students can take advantage of this program.

Are the discounted ride credits transferable to another person?

Ride credits are not transferable. However, multiple riders can travel together on one credit.

What safety protocols does Lyft have in place?

Click here for Lyft’s safety standards and support.

How do I request an ADA accessible ride?

Read more about Lyft’s accessibility options here.

Can I sign up for UGA Ride Smart if I'm under 18 years old?

You must be 18 years or older to use the Lyft app. Eligible students will receive an invitation email once they have turned 18.

Do I have other late-night ride options?

Students are encouraged to utilize the student-run Designated Dawgs ride service and the UGA night bus service.

Interested in volunteering to be a driver, navigator, or dispatcher for Designated Dawgs? Learn more here.

Can faculty and staff use UGA Ride Smart?

Faculty and staff can use Lyft but are subject to regular pricing.

What if I have additional questions?

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