Uber & Lyft Delay Plans to Leave Minneapolis

by SharonKurheg

Uber and Lyft had had this oddball “cat and mouse” game with cities and countries for years. They only want their drivers to be seen in a particular way, paid a particular way, the companies only want to be taxed a certain way, etc. And if they refuse to follow the rules of a certain location, they either leave, refuse to offer drivers there, or sue.

Over the years, this has happened in, along other countries, Australia, Bangladesh, Brussels, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Denmark, Hungary, Indonesia, Morocco, the Netherlands, South Korea, Turkey and Thailand, among others. In the U.S., there have been issues in California (San Francisco),  Oregon (Portland), Texas (Austin) and Virginia, among others. And in MANY places, there have been issues arising between ride sharing and taxi companies.

Minneapolis has been the latest place to have issues with Uber and Lyft.

a group of toy cars with signsRecent city and state analyses had shown that the two rideshare companies were compensating drivers less than Minneapolis’ minimum wage, so the City Council voted on an ordinance to force the companies to pay their drivers a higher rate when they were within city limits. Uber and Lyft said the city’s minimum rate of $1.40 per mile and $0.51 per minute (or $5 per ride, whichever was greater), excluding tips, for the time spent transporting passengers in Minneapolis were too high, so they threatened to abandon the market, saying it will be too costly to operate there.

The rate would ensure that drivers were paid the equivalent of the city’s minimum wage of $15.57 per hour. That was too much for the ride sharing giants. Awwww.

However in a news conference earlier this week, representatives from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport and the hospitality industry said the move to require the new pay scale by May 1st would be near-impossible at such a late date. They needed more time for competing rideshare startups that were willing to pay drivers a fair amount to get a chance to get licensed and recruit drivers.

With that, The Minneapolis City Council voted unanimously to implement the ordinance on July 1 instead of May 1. And with THAT, Uber and Lyft said they’d delay their plans to leave the market until then, as well.

This gives other companies more time to get started and established while Lyft and Uber were still in the area. It also gives Minnesota lawmakers more time to consider passing statewide rules on pay rates for ride-hailing drivers.

So at least through July 1, Uber and Lyft will remain in Minneapolis.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary


Christian April 12, 2024 - 3:12 pm

When intensely profitable companies like Uber have to actually share with their workers so the workers can attain minimum wage it makes me sad.

FrequentWanderer April 12, 2024 - 4:43 pm

It also gives Uber some more time to lobby the Minnesota state legislature to pass a law superseding local mandates and ensuring Uber can do whatever they want.

Bobby April 13, 2024 - 9:33 pm

If the yourmileagemayvary owner wants to overpay drivers in MN I’m all for it. Start your own company that loses money. Setting an arbitrary minimum pay is economic suicide. Go for it if you really think it’s what the world needs. Not so excited? Why not?

And yeah this comment will be deleted because you have no integrity. If you actually believed in this crazy idea you wouldn’t be so quick to censor me. But you have no integrity.

SharonKurheg April 13, 2024 - 11:36 pm

Actually, your comment wasn’t deleted; we just have to approve them before they go live. That doesn’t always happen immediately, as we don’t monitor our blog 24/7 – we eat dinner, go out to the movies, etc.

To be honest, your comment typically wouldn’t have been approved because it was unkind and disrespectful. But it also appears that you think we have any huge concern in what Uber, Lyft, Minneapolis or Minnesota do. If that’s the case, you would be mistaken. We don’t. We were just writing about it so people who might be interested would know.

Now, your other comment? The one where you called us names, and suggested we do not nice things to ourselves? No, that one won’t be approved, precisely because we have integrity.

Ellen April 15, 2024 - 10:04 am

Oh Karen…oops, sorry. Sharon. If paying people a wage that allows them to put a roof over their head and food on the table equates to ‘economic suicide’ in your world, then I’m eternally grateful that I don’t live in it.
There’s another article on here about a delightful person named Angela Peery-you should look her up and get in touch. Feels like you’d have a lot in common.

SharonKurheg April 15, 2024 - 10:12 am

Hi Ellen – I think you meant to write that to Bobby – he’s the only one who mentioned the term “economic suicide,” not me. As I said, I personally have no dogs in the Uber/Lyft/Minneapolis/Minnesota game; I just wrote about it for those who might want to hear the new. The only “side” I took was to briefly mock Uber & Lyft for not wanting to pay their drivers a fair wage.

Ellen April 15, 2024 - 6:35 pm

Oops-yes, you’re right! Sorry about that. What’s the Bobby equivalent of Karen….

SharonKurheg April 15, 2024 - 6:39 pm

LOL! I’ve heard Ken, Greg, Darren and a few other names.

Dave G April 14, 2024 - 1:11 am

Actually this seems like pretty “fair and balanced” reporting to me. All the facts are there for the reader to absorb and evaluate on their own. ‘Nuff said!


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