Skip to main content

Information for drivers

San Diego International Airport (SAN)

For driving at SAN, learn how to receive airport trip requests and get in on the action.

Airport regulations for drivers

Per airport regulations, drivers must adhere to the terms below. Failure to do so may result in the receipt of a citation or even restriction of access to airport trips. Please note that Uber will not pay for any citations that drivers may incur.

  • When on airport property, the Driver app must be open at all times (drivers must not go offline until exiting the airport area).
  • We’ve instituted a special queue at San Diego International Airport. The queue only works within the designated area. Drivers waiting elsewhere will not receive trip requests through the Driver app unless there are no drivers in the waiting area.
  • The Uber vehicle decal (trade dress) must always be displayed on the front passenger windshield and rear passenger windshield facing outward. Drivers can obtain this Uber decal at their local Greenlight Hub.
  • Rideshare vehicles must be less than 10 years old to be eligible for airport pickups.
  • Please be aware that feeding the birds is not allowed, as it can cause disruptions to airport flight procedures.
  • Please follow the instructions of the airport traffic officers.

Pro tips

  • Driver cancellations: Trip cancellations can take away from the great Uber experience that riders and drivers expect. Please remember that drivers who improperly use the app and intentionally disrupt the service, including excessively canceling rides or asking riders to cancel rides, may lose the ability to receive trip requests to and from the airport through the Driver app.
  • Ground transportation and airport security staff: Airport rules are as important as traffic rules. Airports expect drivers to follow the instructions of the airport staff.
  • Commercial vehicle parking restrictions: Some commercial vehicle parking restrictions may be posted around the airport. Please note that if you are displaying the Uber trade dress or are signed in to the Driver app, these parking restrictions will apply. Uber does not reimburse citations for disobeying parking restrictions.
  • Accessing your waybill: You may be asked to show your waybill. To access it, tap Waybill in your app.
Pickups at the airport

How pickup requests work

It's easy to receive trip requests from riders leaving the airport. However, these trips work a little differently than other requests.

Waiting for requests

Uber’s technology uses a special queuing process. This means that, in order to receive a trip request, you need to enter the designated waiting area. You will then be placed in a virtual queue where the driver can receive a trip request.

Based on the operating agreement with the airport, the waiting area is located behind the Airport Cell Phone Lot near North Harbor Drive (see map below).

Some things to know about the queuing process:

  • Proximity to the terminal within the zone does not create an advantage for drivers or move you closer to the top of the queue
  • If there are no drivers in the waiting area, trip requests will go to drivers in the local area—outside of the waiting area—based on proximity and other factors
  • You can lose your place in line if:
    • You go offline on your Driver app
    • You drive outside the waiting area
    • You do not accept multiple incoming trip requests in a row
    • You cancel a ride (if the rider cancels, you will remain at the top of the queue)

Terminal 1 pickup and dropoff zones

The pickup area for Terminal 1 is located at the transportation island closest to the terminal. Dropoffs take place curbside in the terminal area.

Terminal 2 pickup and dropoff zones

To pick up at Terminal 2, go to the transportation island farthest from the terminal (Lane 2) on the Arrivals level, on the right side of the curb. Dropoffs take place curbside in the terminal area.

It's a good idea to confirm your rider’s name before starting the trip—it never hurts to double-check.

Only drivers responding to Uber Black and Uber Black SUV with a TCP permit and an SAN Airport permit should pick up curbside.

Prematch at SAN

Prematch is live at this airport. Prematch is an in-app feature that prompts drivers in the waiting lot to begin heading toward the airport terminals a few minutes before the app anticipates a pickup request. This should reduce idle wait time ahead of picking up your rider.

If you get a Prematch prompt in the app but don't receive a pickup request within 3 minutes of arriving at the terminals, you must exit the airport. If you return to the waiting lot, you will not lose your place in the queue.

Dropoffs at the airport

How dropoff requests work

Uber is a reliable option for travelers heading to the airport.

Based on the operating agreement with the airport, riders can be dropped off at their requested terminal on the Departures level. If you’d like to receive a trip request afterward, you’ll need to keep the Driver app on to maintain your place in the queue process.

TNC Staging Lot at SAN

You can receive airport pickup requests at the SAN Airport Rideshare Staging Lot (located north of Liberator Way off Harbor Drive).

Pro tips

  • Be on the lookout for signs that will help guide you to the lot
  • Park in the designated rideshare spots—you could be fined if you are not
  • If no spaces are available, please immediately exit the lot
  • Stay with your vehicle at all times—you could be fined if you leave your vehicle
  • The cell phone lot and other parking lots surrounding the Rideshare Staging Lot are not part of the Rideshare Staging Lot—you could be fined if you wait for a trip request in these areas
  • Please note the queue/waiting lot is still in place
  • Please be respectful of the lot and dispose of all trash properly
  • If you receive a Prematch prompt in the app, you can begin to make your way to the terminals without a pickup request
    • If you do not receive a pickup request within 3 minutes of arriving at the pickup area, you must exit the airport, but you will regain your spot in the queue if you return to the Staging Lot
    • Prematch is currently live at SAN Airport

SAN pickup maps

Terminal 1 pickup and dropoff zone

The pickup and dropoff area for Terminal 1 is located at the transportation island closest to the terminal. As of January 11, 2018, you should not enter the short-term parking structure for pickups, and you will be responsible for any fees to exit.

Terminal 2 pickup and dropoff zone

To pick up and drop off at Terminal 2, go to the transportation island farthest from the terminal (Lane 2) on the Arrivals level. As of January 11, 2018, you should not go to the Departures level for Terminal 2 pickups.

It's a good idea to confirm your rider’s name before starting the trip—it never hurts to double-check.

Pro tips

Helpful tips for airport trips

1. Getting your car ready

Air travelers can have lots of luggage with them, so you may want to free up trunk space to fit it all in.

2. Helping with luggage

It may take some time for riders to load their luggage into your vehicle. The airport is a busy place, so an extra set of hands can speed things up and help get your riders to their destination faster.

3. Identifying your riders

Asking your riders for their names before starting a trip can help ensure that you’ve picked up the right person out of the crowd.

4. Checking the arrivals schedule

Checking the arrivals schedule at San Diego International Airport can help you maximize your earnings with information about when flights will be landing at the airport and when it will be busiest. See SAN arrivals schedule.

5. Making music optional

While tunes are nice to cruise to, riders may prefer silence after an early-morning or late-night flight. Asking them what they prefer can go a long way and help provide a great experience.

Start making money with Uber