Results of Rancho Cordova “Free $5 to Ride” Ridehailing Discount Coupon Program
Research Team: Caroline Rodier (lead), Brian Harold, Yunwan Zhang, Makenna Harrison, Grace Yang, and Christine Phan
UC Campus(es): UC Davis
Problem Statement: Pilot programs have been implemented in cities across the U.S. to address the first- and last- mile problem with door-to-door shared microtransit, ridehailing companies, and shared-ride operators with dynamic pick-up locations. The City of Rancho Cordova and Lyft partnered to launch one such pilot in the form of a discount-based door-to-door (D2D) coupon program named “Free $5 to Ride". The program offers 5 credits to Lyft riders who start or end their trips at one of four Sacramento Regional Transit District (SacRT) light rail stations. The program was designed to reduce rider dependence on personal vehicles and increase the overall convenience of transit use in the region.
Project Description: UC Davis researchers conducted an evaluation of the “Free $5 to Ride” program during its operational period of May 2019 through June 2021. Researchers developed a participant survey and used survey data along with participant trip data, ridership data for the SacRT light rail, and ridership data for the Rancho CordoVan shuttle service to characterize the outcomes of the pilot program.