United States

Scooter Companies Offer Discounts to Low-Income Riders

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Electric scooters are for everyone, the companies want D.C. residents to know. 

A number of scooter companies offer discounts to those whose budgets are the tightest.

Here's the rundown of scooter company discounts available to people with low incomes. 

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  Discount To Qualify
Skip Unlimited free rides under 30 minutes Provide paperwork proving your income is
200% federal poverty level or below from:
DCHA's Housing Choice Voucher Program
DC's Healthcare Alliance Program
Residential Aid Discount (RAD) by Pepco
Residential Essential Service (RES) Program by Washington Gas
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP)
or be a:*
Pell Grant recipient
TEACH Grant recipient
DC Public Schools Teacher

*Only available to first 600 applicants
Bird Eliminate $1 base fee per ride Provide paperwork proving your status from:
Medicaid
SNAP
Discounted utility bill
other state or federal assistance program
-or-
Pell Grant recipient
Lime $0.50 to unlock, $0.07 per minute
Accessible via text
Can be paid for using PayNearMe retail locations
Provide proof of low income status from:
SNAP
TANF
RAD- Residential Aid Discount
RES - residential essential service
DC Healthcare Alliance program
DCHA Housing choice voucher program
VASH - veterans affairs supportive housing
EBT card
discounted utility bill
or any other state or federally-run assistance program document)
Jump Unlimited free rides under 30 minutes for $5/month fee
$.25/minute after the initial 30 minutes
$25 Out-of-System Parking Fee
Provide paperwork proving your status from:
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP)
Residential Aid Discount (RAD) by Pepco
Residential Essential Service (RES) by Washington Gas
Resident of DC Housing Authority property
or enrolled in DCHA’s Housing Choice Voucher Program
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
Bolt 50% off to those who are low-income or have served in the military Provide paperwork proving your status from:
Veteran ID
CAC ID
EBT/SNAP card
Discounted utility bill
Lyft Unlimited free rides under 30 minutes for $5/month fee Provide paperwork proving your status from:
Medicaid
SNAP
Discounted utility bill
other state or federal assistance program

Lime recently partnered with Building Bridges Across the River to sign more people up for its Lime Access plan. 

"The Lime Access Plan is something that we see as sort of a pillar of our equity work," spokeswoman Laura Miller Brooks said. 

Some D.C. policymakers see scooters as a way to improve mobility in low-income areas. Under proposed new rules for 2020, scooter companies would be allowed to increase the number of scooters in the city, but would be expected to deploy at least 400 vehicles in Equity Emphasis Areas, including large swathes of Southeast and the westernmost portions of Northeast.

Recently, Lime tested placing up to a quarter of its fleet in economically disadvantaged areas of D.C. After analyzing the program, Lime found the demand is there for scooter companies if their release is part of a broader outreach effort.

"We found that scooters can be a really meaningful form of first- [and] last-mile transit connection if there’s adequate supplies," Miller Brooks said.

Lime doesn't consider itself to be the sole transportation provider for these areas. Rather, Miller Brooks said, they see Lime as just one way that scooter companies can provide mobility to everyone in the city.

"In cities across the U.S. transit has not historically been an equitable system," Miller Brooks said. "There are key gaps and still work to be done but we do see ourselves as a supplement."

For information on how to apply for discount programs, follow these links:

Lime: https://v1.li.me/community-impact
Skip: https://rideskip.com/access/
Bird: https://www.bird.co/press/bird-announces-one-bird/
Jump: https://jump.com/cities/washington-dc/boost-plan/
Lyft: https://www.lyft.com/scooters/washington-dc/community
Bolt: https://www.micromobility.com/bolt-forward/
Razor: https://www.razor.com/share/affordability-program/
Spin: https://www.spin.app/spin-access

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