How to use Uber and Lyft at Hartsfield-Jackson

Travelers can now legally get picked up by Uber or Lyft at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, now that a new city of Atlanta ordinance has taken effect.

But there are some things you should know about how ride-share pickups work at the world busiest airport, whether you’re coming for the Seattle Seahawks-Atlanta Falcons playoff game or for any other visit to Atlanta.

Airport fees

Under the new regulations that came with legalized ride-share pickups starting in 2017, ride-share passengers now have to pay a $3.85 surcharge per ride from the airport.

That includes a $1.50 fee, the same paid by taxi cab passengers.

It also includes a $2.35 per-passenger security surcharge paid to the airport by companies like Uber and Lyft that use private background checks instead of a state fingerprint check.

The $3.85 surcharge applies to pickups at the airport -- but not to drop-offs, which have always been permitted.

Now that you know about the fees, here’s a step-by-step description on ride-share pickups at the Atlanta airport.

How to take Uber or Lyft from Hartsfield-Jackson

-- Once you get to the terminal and have picked up any checked bags, use the Uber or Lyft app on your smartphone to request a ride.

-- Go down to the lower level curbside, which is the designated area for ride-share pickups. Follow signs in the terminal or instructions in the app to get to the lower level.

          a) At the domestic terminal, you can get picked up anywhere along the lower-level curbside. You can select on the Uber app the door number where you want to be picked up, or put a pin in the Lyft app at your pick-up location.

          b) At the international terminal, the ride-share pickup area is the outer curb of the lower-level arrivals curbside.

-- Meet your driver for pickup. Drivers are required to display plastic rear-view mirror permit hang-tags to pick up at the airport. You will be charged the fare plus the $3.85 surcharge.

Wait time

It should take drivers just a few minutes to pick up passengers at the Atlanta airport once they get a request.

Ride-share drivers wait for ride requests in a newly-designated staging area parking lot with 250 spaces off Sullivan Road, then proceed to the terminal to pick up customers about a 5-minute drive away.

Ride-share drivers are not permitted to wait for requests while in the cellphone lot or while driving around airport roads. Those areas are blacked out for ride-share app requests using geo-fencing technology.

Cost comparisons

The flat rate for taxi rides from Hartsfield-Jackson to downtown is $30. Uber X or Lyft rides can cost less than $20, though price varies depend on demand.

Uber Black rides, which offer more upscale vehicles operated by professional limo drivers and typically cost more than Uber X, come with a $1.50 surcharge.

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