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What transportation method do you choose if you’re traveling to Las Vegas and need to get around the city? While taxis and city buses are the first things that come to mind, there are other options, such as Uber and Lyft. How much do these rideshare services cost when you’re in Las Vegas?
On average, an Uber or Lyft in Las Vegas will cost between $8 and $15 for a one-way ride between most of the popular tourist spots on the Strip and downtown areas. Each rideshare service also offers bigger and/or more luxurious rides for higher rates. Prices can go up during peak travel times.
Lyft and Uber are great alternatives to cab services in Las Vegas because they are cheaper and can often be more convenient. So keep reading, and I will tell you some of the specifics you’ll need to know when using Uber or Lyft in Las Vegas.
How Much Uber & Lyft Cost in Las Vegas (Sample Fares)
The best way to tell you how much it costs to get around the main tourist areas of Las Vegas using Uber and Lyft is to show you a selection of typical sample fares.
|Pick-up / Drop-off Locations||Miles/Minutes||Uber Cost||Lyft Cost|
|Mandalay Bay to Bellagio||1.8 mi / 11 min.||$12.99||$9.99|
|MGM Grand to The Mirage||1.7 mi / 10 min.||$11.91||$10.99|
|Paris Las Vegas to Fremont Street Experience||5.4 mi / 13 min.||$12.92||$15.96|
|Resorts World to Excalibur||2.8 mi / 10 min.||$13.97||$12.70|
|Mandalay Bay to Fremont Street Experience||8.6 mi / 14 min.||$15.89||$14.99|
|Harry Reid Airport (LAS) to Center Strip (The Cosmopolitan)||3 mi / 9 min.||$28.97||$16.65|
The above fares are estimates based on using the most economical service each of these two rideshare companies offers (Lyft & Uber X). These rates were calculated on a typical afternoon and do not take into account any Surge or Prime Time charges that may be imposed at peak times (more on that further below).
Check out the estimate for Mandalay Bay to the Fremont Street Experience in downtown Las Vegas. Mandalay Bay is on the far southern end of the Strip, and downtown is at the far northern end of the popular tourist corridor. So traveling between these two spots is about as far as you’ll need to go to see 90% of the most popular Las Vegas casinos and attractions.
So you can expect that as a typical tourist, you won’t spend more than about $15 for any single Uber or Lyft ride.
Finally, notice that a ride to or from Harry Reid International Airport (LAS) costs considerably more than the other destinations. This is because the Las Vegas airport charges Uber and Lyft an additional ride trip fee every time they enter or leave the airport that is passed on to the rider.
Also, notice the difference in cost between Uber and Lyft for a pick-up from the airport heading to The Cosmopolitan mid-strip. Each service has its own pricing algorithm, and at any moment in time, there can be a big discrepancy in cost between the two. It’s always worth checking both rideshare company apps for prices before scheduling a ride.
Lyft Las Vegas (Know before you ride)
If you’re visiting Las Vegas without a car, you’re going to need some transportation to get to all the things you want to see and do while you’re here. You could choose a taxi or a city bus, but you’re wondering if Lyft would be a better option.
Let’s take a quick look at the different costs associated with Lyft and how much you can expect to pay for this service in Las Vegas.
Lyft Price: Economy to Luxury Options
Lyft operates based on the type of car you want to ride in and what you need to carry with you. For example, if you’re arriving in Vegas with several bags of luggage and 4-5 people, you may want to go with the Lyft XL. These are typically minivans or SUVs and are considered the economy package for a small group of people.
On the other end of the scale, Lyft Lux includes Mercedes or BMWs for smaller groups or a Cadillac Escalade for larger groups.
The table below gives you a quick overview of the Lyft price associated with economy or luxury vehicles:
|Lyft||Lyft XL||Lyft Lux||Lyft Lux Black||Lyft Lux Black XL|
|Economy vehicle that carries up to 4 riders, with no additional fees for extra riders.||Economy vehicle that carries up to 5 riders with no additional fees for extra riders. Good for extra luggage.||Luxury premium cars that carry up to 4 riders. Top-rated drivers only. Extra amenities like beverages and mints.||Luxury premium black cars that carry up to 4 riders. Top-rated drivers only. Extra amenities include beverages. They are larger to allow for more luggage.||Luxury premium black SUVs that accommodate up to 6 riders, plus a lot of extra luggage. Only the highest-rated drivers are allowed to drive these vehicles.|
|Base fare $1.61, plus $0.86 per mile. Min fare is $5.54.||Base fare $3.25, plus $2.31 per mile. Min fare is $5.30||Base fare $5, plus $3.06 per mile. Min fare is $6.30||Base fare $8, plus $3.55 per mile. Min fare is $15.00||Base fare $15, plus $4.25 per mile. Min fare is $25|
As you can see, the type of car you choose to order makes a large difference in your costs. If you don’t care what vehicle you’re in and are just looking for the cheapest ride, then choosing the economy Lyft is the best choice.
Downloading the Lyft App
If you don’t already have the Lyft app on your mobile device, you’ll need to download it from either the Google Play Store (Android) or the Apple App Store (iOS), depending on your device. It will just take a few moments to download the app and set up your account.
Estimating Your Lyft Price in Las Vegas
Before you order a ride from Lyft, you can use the app to estimate your fare between where you are and where you want to go. While this is a convenient feature, if you accidentally order the ride while estimating your fare, note that a cancellation fee ($2) may be charged.
To avoid that possibility, you can instead use Lyft’s online fare estimator, where you’ll be able to do the same thing only on their website instead of in the app.
Be Aware of Lyft Prime Time Pricing in Las Vegas
While I’ve covered Lyft’s general pricing above, you also need to be aware of Lyft’s Prime Time pricing. Prime Time is a pricing surcharge that comes into effect at peak travel times. Meaning when it gets busy, the prices go up. If more people want rides than there are drivers, Prime Time surcharge fees of 25% to over 300% are the result.
Prime Time surcharges go into effect during peak travel times which are fairly reliable in most cities and include morning and evening rush hours and weekend nights.
While Las Vegas has these same basic times to avoid if you want to keep your fares low, anytime can be subject to Prime Time fees. Because Las Vegas hosts more major events than just about any city in the world, these extra fees can appear on the app at days and times you wouldn’t normally expect in other cities.
Just be aware that if you’re going to be in town during a major trade show, sporting event, or festival, you may be subject to Prime Time pricing.
Uber Las Vegas (What you need to know)
Uber offers the same services as Lyft at comparable prices. For example, the economy Uber base fare starts at $1.57, and they charge $0.84 per mile, while Uber’s luxury vehicle service starts at a base fare of $5, and then charges $3.06 per mile.
Let’s look at Uber costs more closely so that you can make your own comparisons.
Uber Price: Economy to Luxury Options
Uber operates very similar vehicles to Lyft, and the fees are pretty comparable until you get to the premium luxury vehicles. As you can see above, Lyft charges much more for its premium vehicles and start its service at $15. But with Uber, their luxury vehicles start at $5.
Vegas Uber also has an Uber Assist option specially designed for those with disabilities or the elderly who need extra personal assistance. The vehicles have room for scooters or wheelchairs. And the drivers are specially trained to assist people in and out of the cars.
Take a look at the table below to compare the Uber price in Las Vegas:
|UberX||Uber Assist||uberWAV||UberXL||Uber Select|
|Economy vehicle that carries up to 4 riders with no additional fees for extra riders.||This is a personal ride option that is handicap-accessible. Drivers are specially trained to assist riders in and out of vehicles. Service animals are permitted.||For those in a wheelchair, this is a better option. Vehicles are equipped with folding ramps and extra seats for riding companions. Drivers are certified for this extra assistance.||This is a low-cost ride for bigger groups. Up to 6 riders and luggage can fit into the minivans.||This option offers private rides in premium vehicles with leather seats. Up to 4 riders, with no additional fees for extra riders.|
|Base fare $1.57, plus $0.84 per mile. Min fare is $8.77||Base fare $1.57, plus $0.84 per mile. Min fare is $8.77. This means that there are no extra fees for assistance.||Base fare $1.57, plus $0.84 per mile, which is the same as the first two options. Min fare is $8.77||Base fare $3.25, plus $2.31 per mile. Min fare is $8.20||Base fare $5, plus $3.06 per mile. Min fare is $9.20|
If you want an economical ride and need some extra assistance, Uber Assist or uberWAV is your best option.
Downloading the Uber App
Estimating Your Uber Fare in Las Vegas
As with other rideshare services, Uber gives you the ability to estimate your ride cost in their app before ordering a car. You can also use Uber’s web-based fare estimator.
Be Aware of Uber Surge Pricing in Las Vegas
Although I’ve covered Uber’s general pricing in great detail, you must know about something Uber calls Surge Pricing. Surge Pricing comes into effect when more people request rides than there are cars and drivers available.
During surge pricing times, the Uber cost of a ride can go up significantly. The app will clearly state that surge pricing is in effect when you go to order a ride. You can expect to encounter surge pricing in Las Vegas around typical rush hour times and on weekend evenings.
However, because Vegas is such a lively town, you might be surprised to see surge pricing at times you wouldn’t expect. For instance, if the Raiders are playing a home game or one of the regularly scheduled conventions is in town, there may be thousands of extra people all wanting a ride at the same time.
You can avoid surge pricing by planning your outings at times that are less likely to be busy. However, sometimes in Las Vegas, this just isn’t possible, and you’ll have to pay the extra amount, choose to walk, or hop on the city bus.
Uber or Lyft in Las Vegas: Which is Better?
Honestly, in my opinion, either service in Las Vegas is about the same. The same basic services are available at the same basic price.
However, I do have a tip that will allow you to choose the best service at the best time, which is to download and use both apps simultaneously. While Uber and Lyft offer the same basic service, they don’t always have the same fares at the same time.
You can use the fare estimate in both apps to compare the cost to your next Vegas destination and pick the one that’s the cheapest. For instance, Uber may be charging surge pricing at a time when Lyft is not.
Or maybe the next available ride on Lyft has a ten-minute wait time, while an Uber driver may be able to pick you up in two minutes.
Use both of the apps for each ride and choose the best ride available to you.
Important Note About Using Uber and Lyft in Las Vegas
Typically, one of the cool things about using a rideshare company is you can step outside wherever you’re at and get a ride. While that works the same in many areas of Vegas, it works a little bit differently when it comes to catching a ride on the Las Vegas Strip.
By law, Uber and Lyft are not allowed to stop on the street along Las Vegas Boulevard (the Strip). Therefore, to get picked up by either rideshare service, you will have to be at a location that has an Uber or Lyft pickup area.
This means that you may have to do a little bit of walking before you can order a ride.
Fortunately, every casino, shopping center, or major attraction along the Strip has a designated area for rideshare pickup. You’ll usually find these areas near the entrance to the building. Look for signs that say “rideshare pickup” or “valet parking,” and you should have no trouble finding the right spot.
Once you’re standing in the appropriate area, it’s the right time to order a ride.
Are Uber & Lyft Cheaper Than a Las Vegas Taxi?
Generally, both Uber and Lyft are less expensive than the taxi price in Las Vegas when using one of their economy services. For instance, if you want to get from the airport to the Strip, you will pay about 10% less than a taxi using an Uber or Lyft.
However, if you want to take advantage of Uber or Lyft’s luxury ride service, you can expect to pay a lot more than a taxi.
Uber and Lyft can be somewhat spendy, but if you choose the economy version and don’t have very far to go, they can be a much more affordable option than a taxi in Las Vegas.
In fact, if you’re traveling with two to four people spending $10-$15 to get somewhere cool in Vegas is actually a pretty good deal.