Eliminating airport drop-off and pick-up fees for ridesharing companies would increase consumer welfare, create jobs, and deliver economic benefits to the economy.
ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA – A white paper released today by the American Consumer Institute examines the impact of ridesharing pick-up and drop-off fees on consumers. Specifically, the paper highlights how airport authorities frequently impose fees on ridesharing companies, like Uber and Lyft, which are passed along to consumers in the form of higher fares.
So why do airports continue to levy such fees? Airports argue that ridesharing fees are needed to subsidize other forms of ground transportation. However, if consumers prefer ridesharing over other ground transportation options, airports should scale down these alternative services instead of subsidizing them. Consumers should not be paying for services that they do not want.
Airports also argue that the fees are necessary to lower curbside congestion. This argument is weak, too, considering the low elasticity of demand for ridesharing services does little to reduce airport congestion. Consumers are simply forced to pay more. Therefore, airport authorities’ decision to continue levying airport drop-off and pick-up fees on ridesharing companies defies explanation and is antithetical to consumer welfare.
The paper encourages policymakers to reexamine the ability of airport authorities to raise fees on ride-sharing providers. It estimates that removing such fees would increase consumer welfare by one billion dollars per year, increase household earnings by half a billion dollars, create 17,000 new jobs, and generate downstream benefits worth $1.7 billion annually. The benefits to consumers and workers are clear. Airport fees benefit no one but airports.
To learn more about the impact of airport fees on consumers, read the white paper here. The American Consumer Institute is a nonprofit education and research organization. For more information about the new rule or the Institute, visit www.TheAmericanConsumer.Org or follow us on Twitter (X) @ConsumerPal.