Lyft is one of the largest ride-sharing companies in the U.S., offering service in all 50 states. In addition, Lyft also offers bike sharing, motorized scooters and car rentals. The company partners with various hotels, airlines and certain Chase credit cards, and it offers the Lyft Pink membership program, providing plenty of opportunities to earn miles and points and save some cash.
Here are some of the ways you could be optimizing your travel rewards with your Lyft rides:
Earning miles and points for Lyft Rides
Benefiting from Chase credit cards
If you’ve got a Lyft Pink membership and hold the Chase Sapphire Reserve® or the J.P. Morgan Reserve card, you will earn 10 Ultimate Rewards® points per $1 spent with Lyft, which is an outstanding earn rate on car rides. Other Chase cards benefit from solid Lyft Pink earn rates as well:
5 Ultimate Rewards® points per $1
5% cash back
Chase Freedom Student.
Chase Ink Cash.
All earn rates are valid through March 2022.
» Learn more: Several Chase cards will earn more rewards on Lyft rides
Benefiting from other credit cards
Although not as lucrative, other travel credit cards allow you to earn additional points for Lyft rides, because they fall into the travel category. For example, the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card earns 3x per $1 spent on rides, while the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express earns 3% back. Terms apply.
» Learn more: NerdWallet's best credit cards for transit and commuters
Earn Delta SkyMiles for every ride
Delta Air Lines lets riders earn miles based on how much they spend on their Lyft rides. You can earn 2 Delta SkyMiles per $1 spent on airport rides and 1 mile per $1 spent on all other Lyft rides in the U.S. It doesn’t matter whether you take a shared ride or a Lyft XL, you’ll still earn the same number of miles.
Make sure your Delta SkyMiles and Lyft accounts are linked to start racking up the miles on Delta. New Lyft riders who sign up with their Delta accounts also get up to $20 in ride credit. Keep in mind that coupons or Lyft credits do not count toward SkyMiles earnings.
Get Lyft credit with the World Elite Mastercard
World Elite Mastercard customers can register to earn $10 in Lyft credit every time they take five qualifying rides within one calendar month. Most rides in the U.S. will qualify, as long the ride was paid for with a World Elite Mastercard.
A couple of the American AAdvantage cards qualify for this promotion too, so you could simultaneously earn AAdvantage miles and Lyft credit with your rides each month.
» Learn more: What benefits come with a World Elite Mastercard?
Earn Hilton Honors points for every ride
Lyft also offers earnings for Hilton Honors members. Connect your accounts and you can earn 3 Hilton Honors points per $1 spent on regular Lyft rides and 2 Hilton Honors points per $1 spent on Lyft shared rides.
Rides in both the U.S. and Canada qualify for Hilton points, and new Lyft users will also get $5 off their first three rides when they sign up with their Hilton Honors account.
Save money with Lyft
Lyft Pink Membership
Lyft Pink is a monthly membership that offers a variety of perks, including:
15% discount on rides.
Free Grubhub+ membership, which provides free food delivery and is valued at $9.99/month.
Three free 30-minute bike/scooter rides each month along with discounts on electric bikes.
SIXT car rental upgrades.
Three complimentary cancellation fees when rides are rebooked within 15 minutes.
Priority airport pickups during busy times.
The membership costs $19.99/month and is also offered for free for a year to Chase Sapphire Reserve® cardholders. If you’re considering paying for the membership or your free year of Lyft Plus from the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is ending, do the math to see if a membership is right for you based on either the 15% ride savings or the free delivery via Grubhub+.
» Learn more: How to get the most from the Chase Sapphire Reserve
SIXT car rentals
Introduced in July 2020, this partnership allows customers to book SIXT car rentals directly from the Lyft app, simplifying the car rental process. Customers can select the exact car they would like, which is different from the typical car rental experience, which only shows the type of car you’ll get instead of the exact model.
Other benefits include a faster pickup experience since you’ve already selected the car and a $10 Lyft credit to get home after you’ve returned your car to SIXT. The rental company has more than 280,000 premium vehicles globally and is present in major airports and downtown markets throughout the U.S. Rentals can be booked through the Lyft app or website and are available in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and many other cities.
There is no special earn rate for SIXT, but you can use a credit card that earns bonus points for car rentals so that you could maximize your travel rewards.
Lyft Business Profile
Those who use Lyft when traveling for work can sign up for a Lyft Business account, which will allow you to take advantage of features like simplified expenses and ride rewards. Additionally, you will earn $5 in personal ride credits for every five business rides taken.
Wait & Save
The Wait & Save option allows customers to save money when booking a ride. This option is cheaper because it optimizes for the driver’s time. For example, if there is a driver near you who is completing a ride and a driver across town who is available, the Wait & Save option will match you with the driver near you, but you will have to wait for them to complete their drop-off.
You may need to wait up to 15 minutes for the car to arrive, but this option allows drivers to decrease the amount of time spent driving without passengers and also save on gas. This is a greener option and is great for those who are not in a rush.
The bottom line
Lyft offers its customers many ways to earn miles and points and save money on rides. If you’re a frequent Lyft user, benefits like the Lyft Pink membership, earn rates of up to 10x points on various Chase credit cards, and miles earned with Delta and points earned with Hilton can really amplify the rewards you can get from riding with Lyft.
The information related to the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card, Ink Plus® Business Credit Card, Chase Freedom Student, Chase Freedom®, and Chase Ink Cash has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card. The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card is no longer accepting new applications.
How to Maximize Your Rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2021, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card