Lyft to serve Toronto next month in first foray outside US

Javier Stokes
November 14, 2017

The ride-hail company announced on Monday that, starting in December, it will begin operations in Toronto, marking the first time Lyft will be available outside the US.

"We think Lyft's values align really well with Toronto's and we know there's demand", he said in an interview.

When service begins there, Lyft hopes to have enough drivers to respond to ride requests in two to three minutes, as it does in major USA cities.

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Lyft will likely have a good chance of becoming a strong competitor relatively quickly - Lyft co-founder John Zimmer points out to the Toronto Star that 50,000 Torontonians have the Lyft app on their phone already, despite there being no service available in the country.

Last year, city council voted in favour of a package of regulations that effectively legalized ridesharing services in Toronto. The company is also beginning to sign up potential drivers now in advance of its rollout of its service.

Lyft Chief Executive Logan Green has said the San Francisco company plans further worldwide expansion. Uber, by comparison, was in more than 450 cities across the globe at the time. Indeed, there have been reports since the start of the year that such plans were imminent. For example, Quebec wants drivers to complete 35 hours of training, which Uber said was not feasible for many of its drivers who have other jobs and only drive for the service part-time.

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