Lyft transportation service is driving into Wichita, bringing competition with it


WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Starting Thursday, a new transportation service will hit Wichita streets, giving Uber and traditional taxis, some competition.

“I’m excited,” said Wichitan, Ricky Dillard.

Avid Old Town goers, like Dillard say Lyft will be a nice addition to have, when calling for a ride.

“I’m happy and I feel like the roads will be safer, just to cut down the drinking and driving,” explained Dillard.

When asked why Lyft is coming to Kansas, its corporate office said “Thursday’s launch is the first wave of launches sweeping the country as Lyft expands to over 100 cities throughout 2017.”

The expansion means new competition in Wichita for other ride-sharing services, like Uber and local taxis.

“It’s going to take work away from the regular taxi services,” stated Bill McCary, owner of Bill’s Rides, LLC.

McCary started his company six years ago, and says now with a new company rolling into town, he’s trying to reach customers the old-fashioned way.

“It’s going to make it a lot harder. I’m going to have to go back out and talk to people on the street and businesses to try to drum up other businesses,” explained McCary.

“The biggest period of time that I see the most need is probably on Saturdays,” said Uber driver, Jeremy McTaggart.

McTaggart said he sees Lyft arriving in Wichita as an opportunity to work for both companies.

“I could probably drive for Lyft as well. So, I should be able to have both apps open at the same time,” said McTaggart.

Lyft has not worked anything out yet with Wichita Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport, and it could take a few weeks to be approved to operate there.

Right now, Uber has three reserved parking spaces to pick up passengers.

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