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Oregon Duck takes first ride as Lyft begins services in Eugene

The Duck took the first Lyft ride from the Hilton in downtown Eugene to Autzen Stadium.

Posted: Sep 4, 2018 5:52 PM
Updated: Sep 5, 2018 6:58 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The rideshare company Lyft returned to Eugene Wednesday morning, and the Oregon Duck took the inaugural ride.

The Duck took the first Lyft ride from the Hilton in downtown Eugene to Autzen Stadium.

Todd Kelsay, the Pacific Northwest General Manager of Lyft, said he understands the need for rideshare services in cities like Eugene.

"We're gonna be able to provide a lot of options for people who need to get where they need to go," Kelsay said. "As a father of college students, I know how important it is to have rideshare in college towns like this one."

Eugene joins a handful of other cities in Oregon that offer the service, including Portland and Corvallis.

Fellow rideshare service Uber launches Thursday, just one day after the launch of Lyft.

Kelsay said launching one day before wasn't about competition. He said the decision was made without Uber in mind.

"Once we had the approval from the city to launch, we didn't want to wait another day," Kelsay said. "It's not about them. It was just about our ability to launch and as soon as possible."

Eugene resident Caryle Hearte said signing up to be a driver for Lyft was easy.

"I applied online and brought my vehicle down, well went and had a car wash and brought my vehicle down here and these guys have been very helpful," Hearte said.

If you're interested in driving for Lyft, you can sign up in person at the Hilton in downtown Eugene Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mechanics will be on-site for free vehicle inspections.

You can also sign up on Lyft's website.

To celebrate the launch, Lyft is giving all Eugene passengers $5 off 3 rides by using the code "LYFTEUG."

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