Lyft launches program that connects drivers and riders of same gender

Female and nonbinary Lyft drivers now have more control over who they pick up for a ride.

The rideshare company unveiled on Tuesday its new Woman+ Connect feature, which prioritizes matches with other nearby women and nonbinary riders.  

It’s not just drivers who have a bigger say in who they are matched with — the company said riders will also be allowed to opt in to the service.

“Women+ Connect is all about providing more women and nonbinary people the opportunity to earn money on their terms and giving riders more choice,” said Lyft CEO David Risher. 

Lyft notes that women make up about 25% of all drivers, which means people who opt into the service may not always match with a person of the same gender. However, the company states that their preference will be prioritized. 

The new feature has been praised by law enforcement and LGBTQ+ advocacy groups. 

“This is a great feature that can make an important difference in how women use and view rideshare,” said Kym Craven, executive director of the National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives.

The feature will first roll out in Chicago, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose. Lyft said it plans to offer the program in more cities in the near future.