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Lyft Charlotte & My Terrible “Brilliant” Idea
Following a fantastic day at Family Travel for Real Life, a great dinner and a group podcasting session (more on that later), it was time to head to my hotel, one of the two Hyatt Place hotels near Charlotte’s airport.
Since I had a couple of Lyft credits expiring (their 30 day expiration on referral credits is terrible), I agreed to give Dan from Points with a Crew a ride to his hotel. He was staying at the Hyatt House near the airport, about 3 miles from my hotel.
We departed Uptown Charlotte at a very busy time shorly after the Fleetwood Mac concert had let out. Naturally Lyft was charging 50% more than the normal rates which made sense given how many people were out on the streets, but I didn’t want to pay out of pocket. After all, rides should be free!
It turns out that I had an extra Lyft credit that I won’t be able to use, so I came up with a “brilliant” plan. I would take Dan to his hotel, get out and let the Lyft ride end before calling another car to bring me to my hotel. This way I wouldn’t go over my $20 credit and have to pay out of pocket. Smart am I.
Eventually we arrive at Dan’s hotel and he checks in and ditches me in the lobby. In the meantime I am sitting there with the Lyft app trying to call a car. Over and over it tells me that there are no drivers and to try again later.
Finally after a couple of minutes a driver is assigned. The app estimates it will take him 15 minutes, but I am just happy that I will soon be on my way. Dan is long gone and the front desk clerk is now staring at me. I thought about saying, “but I am a Diamond guest“, but I doubt he would have cared.
Two minutes after my driver is assigned the ride is canceled and I am crushed. Why didn’t I just book my room at the Hyatt House? Why do I get myself into these situations? Why the hell did I book an 8am flight on a night when I have to set the clock ahead an hour and most importantly, why the heck did I give Dan a ride? 🙂
On the podcast we talked about breaking down while traveling and how I have probably done it more often than my son. For a moment I felt just sorry enough for myself to consider it, but then I turned to my old buddy Uber.
Thankfully Uber turned out to be much more reliable than Lyft and a driver arrived within four minutes. I was at my hotel a few minutes later. Sure it cost me $5, but it was so worth it. So very much worth it!
I guess the moral of this story is that being cheap and trying to hack the system can sometimes backfire. Thankfully Uber saved the day, but I still lost about 30 minutes of precious sleep. Oh, and that Dan is trouble!
Have you ever had a brilliant idea to save money while traveling that blew up in your face? Let me know in the comments!
Miles to Memories has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Miles to Memories and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.