Airports in New York City, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, and Montréal recognized for investing in best-in-class rideshare experiences
During a year in which travel approached (and in some cases surpassed) pre-pandemic levels, airports pivoted from focusing on recovery to tackling challenges associated with strong demand. The terminal curbside, which shapes traveler’s first and last impressions, became an even more important area to drive efficiency and promote a positive passenger experience.
Throughout the past year, Uber and airports around the world collaborated on day-to-day operations while also strategizing on long-term improvements. Through investments in new pickup areas, the deployment of innovative technologies, and the addition of rider and driver-focused amenities, airports have helped to reinvent the ground transportation experience.
As one of the largest technology players in the airport ground transportation space, Uber is proud to recognize airports in the US and Canada whose efforts in 2022 helped create a best-in-class rideshare experience for our shared customers. Each award recipient demonstrated excellence in categories spanning from commitment to innovation to shortest wait time, best customer experience, and more.
Since breaking ground on its ambitious, multi-billion dollar redevelopment in 2016, New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA) has transformed into a world-class airport. This past year, LGA marked a significant milestone with the opening of the new Terminal C, the last major terminal to open under the project. With the completion of this facility, getting picked up by an Uber has never been more seamless.
Throughout the redevelopment project, Uber and LGA collaborated on a near-weekly basis to respond to construction changes and roadway closures. Through these regular meetings, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) traffic planners and the Uber Operations team also had the chance to strategize new pickup configurations with the goal of promoting efficiency, improving the customer experience, and reducing congestion.
Today, rideshare customers at Terminal C enjoy dedicated space for pickups, digital signage that breaks up the curb into easy-to-navigate zones, and dispatch technology that minimizes wait times by pre-dispatching a select number of vehicles in advance of a request. These enhancements supplement changes that recently launched at the new Terminal B, where customers are directed to request their ride from one of several clearly marked “pickup aisles.” Each aisle is assigned to specific products based on historical demand, and the Uber app adapts to real-time usage to further spread passenger requests more evenly across the available curb space.
As a result of this close collaboration, LGA today ranks among the highest performing airports in the world based on post-trip customer satisfaction surveys. Average customer wait times at Terminal C have dropped significantly while overall reliability at all terminals improved. The Uber and LGA teams, despite these accomplishments, continue to explore further areas for improvement and are already discussing additional ways to promote an even more delightful customer journey.
After a stressful day of travel, passengers want to depart from the terminal curbside as quickly as possible. With an average customer wait time well under three minutes, passengers at Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL) enjoyed the lowest average wait time for their ride. YUL helped create this strong customer experience by dedicating a close-in driver waiting lot and allowing for the repositioning of a limited number of vehicles directly to the terminal curbside with Uber’s ExpressMatch technology. The airport continues to regularly engage the Uber Airports team on additional improvements which recently resulted in a new waiting area for drivers that remains within close proximity to the terminal.
While metrics can measure the success of an operation, the design of policies and willingness of an airport to collaborate can have a significant impact on the passenger and driver experience. Each airport recognized with the Experience Obsessed award has considered the viewpoints of those who rely on the Uber platform in order to improve the overall experience.
As part of its recently opened terminal, the Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC) team designed a new rideshare pickup and dropoff area that is spacious, organized, and clearly marked. Today, the experience features branded signage and linear curbs broken into zones so that riders and drivers are more easily able to locate one another during peak periods. Additionally, SLC dedicated an entire roadway for rideshare vehicles, which has resulted in separation from private vehicles that can have longer dwell times. The new layout and dedicated rideshare road promotes a high number of Rematch trips (where a driver completing a dropoff can pick up a new passenger requesting a pickup), which has contributed to shorter passenger wait times and strong overall reliability. SLC, as host to American Association of Airport Executives’ (AAAE) 2022 Parking and Landside Management Workshop, recently had the opportunity to showcase the space to airport leaders from around the country.
Over the past year, Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX) has worked with Uber on a curb space redesign to ensure that each transportation mode is allocated sufficient space to efficiently operate. Due to the high volume of Uber trips at PHX, Uber now operates from dedicated curbs at both Terminals 3 and 4 with a significantly expanded footprint. This change will lead to lower levels of congestion for Uber pickups and will enable a better customer experience for travelers of all modes. These customer-friendly enhancements are in addition to the airport’s commitment to providing an industry-leading staging area, which includes driver amenities such as an entertainment space, dining area, restrooms, and washing facilities.
Looking Ahead to the Future of Ground Transportation
Each award recipient, through a commitment to partnership and customer-first mindset, has helped promote a positive end-to-end passenger journey. Looking to 2023, Uber looks forward to collaborating on the next generation of dispatch technologies, congestion reduction tools, and seamless pickup experiences.
The Uber Airports team tackles tough challenges and works in partnership with airports around the world to achieve operational goals. For more information, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.