Ride Hailing Apps Grow in Popularity

January 10, 2019

This article is included in these additional categories:

Automotive | Boomers & Older | Demographics & Audiences | Industries | Youth & Gen X

The percentage of Americans using ride-hailing apps has more than doubled in just three years. A full 36% of Americans used services such as Uber or Lyft in 2018 compared to only 15% in 2015, according to a new Pew Research Center survey of more than 10,000 US adults.

With sharing services becoming more recognized in recent years, it is no surprise that ride-hailing service use has nearly doubled across all age ranges. In fact, while it is not unexpected that younger people are using these types of apps, the percentage of individuals 50 years and older using ride-hailing services has more than tripled since 2015 (7%-2015; 24%-2018) – a possible consequence of the growing digital confidence among Boomers and older Americans.

Ride-Hailing Has Strong Urban-Rural Gap

There is a significant gap between urban and rural usage of Uber and Lyft. This gap reaches across age ranges, education levels, and income levels. More than half (55%) of urban respondents between ages 18-29 have used ride-hailing services compared to just over one-third (36%) of the same age group in rural areas.

Likewise, twice as many people from urban areas with a household income of $75k+ reported using Uber or Lyft compared to those in rural areas. The largest divide comes with education level, as only one-third of college graduates from rural areas use the apps, less than half the 70% from urban areas.

Recent Gallup research likewise found a noticeable gap between urban and rural usage of ride-hailing services. It is worth noting that this disparity between urban and rural areas could be due to less availability of Uber or Lyft services in rural areas compared to larger urban areas, which could be symptomatic of other socioeconomic divides between America’s rural and urban populations.

You can read more about the survey here.

About the Data: The American Trends Panel (ATP), created by Pew Research Center, is a nationally representative panel of randomly selected US adults. This reports data is generated from 10,683 panelists surveyed in Fall 2018.

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