Can You Pay Lyft with Cash? Lyft Payment Methods

Can you pay Lyft with cash? The convenience that Lyft offers to the riding public has made it very popular in the U.S. and Canada. Some riders who are new to this service assume that they can just ride it like a normal taxi and just pay the fare with cash. I will discuss in this article if Lyft allows passengers to pay in cash or not.

Can you pay for Lyft with cash? You cannot pay for Lyft with cash; instead, passengers pay for their Lyft rides solely through its app. You can give a tip with cash; however, it is easier to tip through the app.

Lyft’s valid payment options are through American Express, JCB, MasterCard, Discover Card, Visa, PayPal, Apple Pay, Android Pay, and some Interac-branded cards that feature a MasterCard or Visa logo.

Cash payment is not allowed by Lyft and other companies offering ridesharing services because of the nature of their operations and also for safety and security reasons. 

Read on to learn more about paying Lyft and how you can pay your fare if you don’t have a credit card.

Can You Pay Lyft with Cash?

No. You cannot pay Lyft with cash. If you pay the Lyft driver with cash, both of you incriminate yourselves in illegal commercial transportation. You and the driver will be fully responsible for any accidents that may happen without safety coverage or insurance.

To receive your cash payment would mean that the driver would have to turn off the application. He will have to work out what you have to pay him for the ride according to the app’s parameters and then receive your payment.

Moreover, there is a record in your app that you have called or contracted for a Lyft service. The same call or contract is also recorded in the driver’s app. That proves that he received and accepted your call, and then both of you canceled the contract.

So, can you pay cash for Lyft? The simple answer is no. Lyft does not allow passengers to pay their drivers with cash. If you want to, you can give the driver a cash tip. Lyft only receives valid payment options. The options include JCB, Discover Card, PayPal, Visa, American Express, MasterCard, Android Pay, Apple Pay, and certain Interac-branded cards with Visa or MasterCard logos.

How Will You Pay a Lyft Ride?

If you will be using Lyft for the first time, the first thing you need to do to get a Lyft ride is access the Lyft app. It is a free app that you can get in the Play Store or Apple Store. Once you have the app on your phone, you will be asked to type in your mobile phone number. Lyft needs your number to send you a text message to verify your phone. Follow the instructions you will receive until you can get a Lyft account and use it.

Your payment for a Lyft ride can be made through the following electronic payment cards or methods: MasterCard, Visa, Discover Card, American Express, JCB, Apple Pay, Android Pay, PayPal, Google Pay, and Interac-branded cards with Visa or MasterCard logo. You can link a bank account to the Lyft app as well.

When the Lyft driver has brought you to your destination, check your mobile phone, and you will see the payment and rating screen on your app. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. To pay your fare, you need to access the app’s Payment Screen. There is a Payment tab on the app. The card that you have enrolled will be indicated on the tab. If you want to change it, just tap the credit card icon on the Payment bar, then go back to complete your payment.
  2. If you want to give tips, you can give the driver cash.
  3. You will also be asked to rate your Lyft ride and the driver. Ratings start at 1 for the worst and go up to 5 for the best.
  4. Tap ‘Submit’ on the payment and rating screen. It will submit both your payment and rating to the Lyft system. Lyft will then send you a receipt confirming your payment.

1. How to Add or Update Payment Data on the Lyft App

You can use the default payment methods for your personal and business rides. If you want to choose or change the default method on the ‘Payment tab,’ just go to ‘Payment defaults.’ You can’t delete the default methods if you don’t assign a different payment method.

To add a new payment method, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Open the Lyft app.
  2. Locate the menu on the top left and open it.
  3. Tap ‘Payment’ to add or update payment data.
can you pay cash with lyft

2. How to Change a Payment Method Before a Ride

You can add or even change your payment method before asking for a ride if you tap the payment method on the request screen. After you have confirmed your pick-up and drop-off points, the default payment method for your ride and the estimate of the fare will appear on the screen.

Before you tap ‘Select Lyft,’ tap the default payment button to add or change the payment method. If the charge fails to register, you will be asked to re-enter your payment info manually the next time you open or use the app. After you have supplied this info, the ride’s charge will be processed on this new payment method. Lyft will then send your receipt via email.

If the card in your new payment method is about to expire, Lyft will remind you to update it.

3. How to View Your Payment History

If, for any reason, maybe for tax reduction purposes, you may want to get a copy of all your transportation expenses, Lyft can help you view all of them. Within the ‘Payment’ tab of the app, there is a ‘Payment History’ section.

It is the record of all your completed Lyft fare charges. These charges include the different fares that you have paid and the tips you’ve given to the drivers, including the fees and subscriptions that you have paid to Lyft.

Why Are You Advised Not to Pay a Lyft Driver with Cash?

Paying your ride with cash might be more convenient for you. But there are valid reasons why Lyft does not allow its users to pay their drivers with cash. Here are several important reasons behind it:

1. Manipulating Fares

Paying cash would mean that the driver would turn off his app. He would then give you a fare charge based on the app’s computation with a little extra. But if you have called Lyft for a ride, your call is already recorded in the system. The driver also has a record of your request. He answered your request – and then both of you canceled the contract. That would be suspicious, don’t you think?

2. Extra Conditions or Services

If you offer to pay with cash upfront, how would the driver know that you will not change your conditions once you are already traveling? No cash payment is the assurance of Lyft so that you won’t start asking additional things to their driver. By experience, some passengers ask Lyft drivers to chauffeur them around for one or more days. Lyft does not encourage this practice.

3. Illegal Transport Contract

A Lyft driver and a rider who agree on cash payments are automatically incriminating themselves in a commercial transport contract that is illegal. You and the driver will be responsible for any accidents that will happen – without the benefit of safety and insurance coverage.

4. Safety Measures

The Lyft driver does not know you from Adam. If something bad happens, such as an accident or a holdup, the driver is on the losing end. Also, there is no record of the trip because the last Lyft record on the driver’s app will be the time that he turned it off.

5. No Insurance Protection

Lyft drivers who transport riders on a cash basis have no insurance protection. Drivers connected with Lyft can get insurance coverage as long as they follow the rules and regulations issued by Lyft. These conditions include no cash payments of fare. If the driver accepts cash payment from you, he effectively disobeyed the terms of the insurance company. He will not get any remuneration when accidents happen.

6. Non-paying Riders

Can you pay cash for Lyft? Lyft drivers are instructed not to get cash from their riders because if they agree to receive cash, how are they sure that the passenger will have the money when the ride ends? What would they do if the passenger says, ‘I can’t pay you because I don’t have cash. I just lost my wallet.‘ To avoid such things, Lyft drivers are strictly instructed not to get cash payments.

We’ve answered, ‘Can you pay Lyft with cash?’; next, let’s look at how to pay Lyft without a credit card.

How to Pay Lyft Without a Credit Card

You can still pay a Lyft driver even if you don’t have a credit card. Just link your checking account to PayPal and use PayPal to pay your Lyft fares. Or you can use digital wallets, such as Google Pay, Paytm, and Android Pay.

can you pay with cash on lyft

Here is how you can do this:

  1. Check if Lyft accepts PayPal payments in your area.
  2. If it does, link your PayPal account to the Lyft app. Sign up for a PayPal account if you don’t have one yet. Then you should link your bank account to PayPal. This process may take a few days to a week.
  3. Once your bank is linked to PayPal, launch the Lyft app on your phone.
  4. On the Lyft app menu, tap ‘Payments’ and choose PayPal as your mode of payment.
  5. Now, you are ready to use PayPal to pay for your Lyft rides.

You no longer need a credit card to do this. If you want to use Google Pay, Paytm, or Android Pay, you may have to undergo a process very similar to that of PayPal.

How to Pay Lyft with a Prepaid Card

Lyft really wants to make it easier for you to pay your fares. You can even use a prepaid card to pay for the trip, such as an American Express or Visa gift card. Prepaid cards where you load a balance can be used as well. Lyft apps for iPhones and Android phones also support prepaid cards.

It will only take a couple of minutes to add a prepaid card to your Lyft account. You can use the balance on the prepaid card to pay part of your fare, and the rest, you could charge to your customary payment method.

Here’s how you can link your prepaid card to Lyft:

  1. Open the Lyft app on your phone.
  2. Tap the three parallel lines located at the top left of the screen, and then tap ‘Payment.’
  3. Enter the required information regarding your prepaid card.
  4. Tap ‘Save.’

How to Use Your Bank Account to Pay Your Lyft Fare

You can use your bank account to pay for your Lyft fares. But you need to use Google Pay for this method. So, you must have the Google Pay app on your phone. Here is what you need to do:

  1. Open the Google Pay app.
  2. Tap ‘Send’ located at the bottom of the screen.
  3. Choose Lyft where you want to send the money to.
  4. Enter the amount you want to send.
  5. Tap ‘Send.’ A screen will show up and asks you to confirm the action.
  6. The next step is to select the payment method you like to use.
  7. Tap ‘Change’ and then ‘Add Bank Account.’
  8. Type in your bank account information.
  9. If the bank performs instant verification, it will ask you to sign in to your bank account. If the bank doesn’t do this or if you choose test deposit, Google Pay will make a small deposit to your bank account. You will see this after 2 to 3 days. To verify the bank info, confirm the amount deposited in Google Pay.
  10. Exit the app or continue the payment process.

How to Tip a Lyft Driver with Cash

Lyft says it is alright to give their drivers an extra tip. They don’t really make that much money, so a little extra will lift their spirits. But how much can you give them? Is there a standard that you can follow?

There’s no set amount, says an executive of an etiquette company. He says to give tips as you would do to a regular taxi driver. The amount is from 15 to 25 percent of the agreed fare. You need to be circumspect because the longer your trip, the higher your fare will be. So, if your trip is shorter and you are feeling generous, you can give more.

Conclusion – Can You Pay Cash for Lyft?

So, to answer the question: “Can you pay Lyft with cash?” No, Lyft does not allow you to pay the driver with cash. But, if you want to, you can give tips in cash.

The valid payment options for Lyft are through American Express, JCB, MasterCard, Discover Card, Visa, PayPal, Apple Pay, Android Pay, and some Interac-branded cards that feature a MasterCard or Visa logo.