I finally had the chance check out the new LAXit ridesharing system at Los Angeles International Airport after a recent trip. It was annoying, but not nearly as bad as I was expecting.
I arrived into LAX around 9:00PM, which is a peak time for departures but a somewhat more quiet time for arrivals. Stepping out onto the curb on the arrivals level, I noticed a pillar painted green with a round “LAXit Shuttle Stop” sign.
Two men wearing green polo shirts were stationed to answer questions. A crowd of about 10 was waiting and we were informed a shuttle would arrive shortly. Well, shuttle after shuttle drove by, but none stopped for us. The easily-recognizable new LAXit shuttles are painted neon green, and most had very few people on them.
I was told that each pair of terminals is sent their own shuttle (1/2, 3/4, TBIT, 5/6, 7/8). That makes sense in theory — imagine if every shuttle started in Terminal 1 and had to make its away around the horseshoe-shaped terminal structure at LAX. The shuttle would likely fill up before it reached terminals 6, 7, 0r 8. Plus, it would simply take too long.
But we still had to wait 15 minutes for a bus. That is unacceptable. The crowd had grown to 25 people by the time the shuttle finally arrived. If needed, the staff in green will help you load your bags onto the bus. Tips are not accepted.
We made the 7-minute trip to the rideharing/taxi lot, which is located adjacent to Terminal 1.
You step off the bus in the center row, which is designated for taxis. The row closest to Terminal 1 is for Uber and Opoli while the third row is for Lyft.
Lyft was about $8 cheaper than Uber, so I chose that. I had no wait for a driver. There were about one dozen lined up. I simply presented my code, it was inputted by the driver, and I was soon on my way. That could not have been easier.
Overall, the process was smoother than I thought. Still, keeping passengers waiting for 15 minutes (some longer) before a shuttle arrives is too long. But the lot itself was well-organized and easy to navigate.
By the way, 121pilot recently shared about a way to save big on Uber or Lyft during a period of surge pricing. Since there was no surge pricing while I was there, the prices on-site or off-site were nearly identical.