Lyft’s Membership-Based Ride Plan Predates Initial Steps Toward IPO


Ridesharing has quickly become a form of everyday living. It’s no longer something we want but a service we actually require. For a large majority of the population, services like Uber and Lyft run concurrently with their daily existence. The latter, Lyft, launched in the summer of 2012 in San Francisco, has seen exponential growth in its short history. Now they’re looking to take a page out of the dental membership plan playbook by implementing a subscription-based service.

With a myriad of choices when it comes to rideshare companies, Lyft is forecasting the future by offering their customers membership benefits. Likened to massively triumphant companies like Netflix, Lyft has been testing versions of a membership-based service for customers since last December. The hope is to soon finalize a product that will set them apart from their biggest competitor, Uber.

“You’ll subscribe to a Lyft plan like you would subscribe to Netflix or a Spotify Premium plan,” said John Zimmer, President, and Cofounder of Lyft, to Wired back in June. This methodology is well researched and hugely effective. Inclusion, in various genres, has often been a tool to firmly grasp and secure even the most erratic consumer; it’s often the one thing that’s made them happiest about a service they’re receiving and, of course, paying for.

Membership based services, too, have historically been a darling for angel investors and venture capitalist. Given the low failure rate thanks to a built-in consumer base, Lyft could easily be paving a road towards additional financial endowments. Moreover, it’s another selling point as the company prepares for its initial public offering (IPO) in 2019.

Lyft’s membership plans not only find commonality with dental membership plans but holistically with the general direction Americans choose to consume media and finance care-based services. Amazon, another company with subscription-based features through Amazon Prime, ranks among the most valuable companies in the world. It’s no mistake that Lyft and others are steering a course the dental industry forecasted years ago.

At present time, Lyft’s experimental “All-Access Plan” cost $299 monthly and allows 30 rides of up to $15. Any ride in excess of $15 riders will be charged the difference. A secondary “Commute Plan” scales $3.99 monthly offering 45 Lyft rides between work and home. These rides are set at a singular, personalized price in addition to the monthly rate.

Hoping for even greater versatility in the future, Lyft aims for this membership services to eventually offer varying means of transportation. With the emergence of motorized scooters and city bikes, these modes of transportation could anchor future “plans.” Smartly and strategically, Lyft would still be without equipment and the headaches of such overhead. In some cities, this could save customers thousands of dollars should they decide to forgo purchasing a vehicle of their own and use the membership service full time.

Dental membership plans — for their part in this — have proven this market successful on a wide scale. With many Americans and dental practices alike shifting from the confines of traditional dental insurance, membership plans are necessary leaps toward a streamlined future. John Zimmer sees the advantages of this future. So does Jeff Bezos. The same is true for many other membership-focused companies and their heroic thought leaders.

Lyft won’t be the only rideshare company to test and subsequently implement membership plans. It’s likely Uber will soon follow suit. The global healthcare industry, food and beverage companies, and many others, too, will also fall in line. Dental membership plans just happen to be ahead of the curve.

Find out more at membersy.

Update 12/6: Following the staggered rollout of membership-based ride plans earlier this fall, Lyft today announced that it has taken a leap towards an initial public offering by filing a draft registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). An SEC review of the company could take upwards to a month.

Lyft, a privately-held company, has not yet determined how many shares would be sold nor the price in which they’d cost. Much of this will be determined following the SEC review. Lyft initially had plans to launch its IPO in spring 2019. Given today’s news, an earlier IPO launch is expected.

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