Lyft night ride

Email invitation for Lyft late-night ride credits to be sent to students Jan. 12

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Penn State University Park students have another opportunity to sign up for monthly ride credits for weekend late-night Lyft service. 

On Wednesday, Jan. 12, Lyft will send an invitation email to all University Park students' Penn State email accounts with enrollment instructions for the Penn State Ride Smart by Lyft program, which provides eight $10-per-ride credits each month for Lyft rides back to campus from downtown State College and select surrounding neighborhoods on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights between 2 a.m. and 7 a.m. For ride credits to apply, rides must begin and end within the following program service areas:

  • Pickup service area: off campus between College Avenue, University Drive, Bellaire Avenue, Hamilton Avenue, and Buckhout Street.
  • Drop-off service area: on campus between Park Avenue, University Drive, College Avenue, and White Course Apartments.

Penn State Ride Smart by Lyft Service Area Interactive Map

Before following the email sign-up instructions, students must download the Lyft app and sign up for an account with their Penn State email address or link their Penn State email address to their existing Lyft account. Students unable to find their Lyft invitation email should check their spam or junk folder, then contact Transportation Services for assistance if still unable to find it.

After signing up for the Ride Smart program through the invitation email, the Lyft account will be updated with the eight ride credits for that month, which will then be automatically applied to eligible rides. If the cost of an eligible ride exceeds the $10 credit, students must pay the difference with the credit card on file with their Lyft account. Lyft ride rates vary and may be impacted by distance, traffic, time of day, special events, and prime-time surcharges. On the first day of each month through May, any unused credits from the previous month will expire, but a new series of eight credits will be added to the account.

The purpose of the Ride Smart by Lyft program is to provide a safe transportation option during late-night hours for students to get back to campus if for any reason they find themselves in a potentially threatening or unsafe situation. It serves as an off-campus companion to the Safe Walk service operated by University Police and Public Safety, which provides walking accompaniment on campus for students, employees, and visitors who may feel unsafe walking alone on campus at night.


In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Lyft has launched a Health Safety Program which includes:

  • Personal health certification for drivers and riders
  • Required face masks for drivers and riders
  • Health safety education for drivers and riders
  • Distribution of cleaning supplies and masks for drivers

To help promote a safe riding experience, Lyft recommends riders take the following safety precautions:

  • Verify your ride by making sure the license plate number, drive information, and vehicle make and model match what you see in the Lyft app.
  • Share your location and route with a friend or loved one from within the Lyft app so they can follow your ride in real time.
  • Follow the Lyft vehicle on GPS via the app.
  • Ask the driver to say who they are picking up.

Visit Lyft's Rider Safety page to learn more about riding smart with Lyft. Students are also urged to follow University recommendations for staying safe.

For more information on the Penn State Ride Smart by Lyft program, visit the Transportation Services website.