If you’ve transited through Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) recently, you are aware of the increasingly congested with rideshare pick-up and drop-off traffic. In an effort to switch things up, the airport devised a plan to, essentially, have an airport shuttle bus pick up passengers curbside and deliver them to a “nearby” parking lot where they could connect with their rideshare (e.g. Uber and Lyft).
Sounds simple enough, yeah?
Well, I transited through LAX yesterday and it’s a hot mess! Just google “LAX” and see what appears.
I read this LA Times article before I even arrived and assumed they may have opening day ‘growing pains’ but the process was an epic fail.
The shuttle bus is supposed to run every 3-5 minutes, but overcrowding created wait times that exceeded an hour. Many passengers were quoted as saying their wait for a shuttle bus was longer than their actual flight into LAX.
To make matters worse, there isn’t enough capacity in the actual Uber/Lyft rideshare waiting lot, so even after waiting up to an hour, passengers encountered this once they they arrived at the rideshare lot:
“LAX traffic” and “smooth” are two words that you won’t hear in the same sentence. However, it was a well-understood level of chaos that many embraced. However, this current situation is a product that you can’t prepare for and is certainly worse than they challenges prior.
In theory, the experience should’ve been…a passenger lands on their flight, they connect to their ride-share app and are told to head to “LAX-it” (the clever name for the new rideshare lot), they follow signs to the shuttles and are taken to the lot in an orderly fashion.
As one of the busiest airports in the world, I would’ve expected better. I mean…how do you NOT know millions of people transit from your airport daily. Given there are no other adequate means of transportation from LAX, they may want to reassess the strategy.
Have you experience LAX traffic before/after the implementation? What are your thoughts?