Charged a Lyft Cancellation Fee? How to Get a Refund or Avoid It
Have you ever been charged a cancellation fee from Lyft?
It’s a frustrating charge to get, especially if you’re just trying to figure out how the app works without spending a lot of money on fares and fees.
Learn how cancellations fees work on Lyft, and how you can dispute a fee and get a refund!
How much is the Lyft cancellation fee?
The cost of the Lyft cancellation fee depends on the Lyft service you use and the city you’re in.
Generally, the cancellation fee is around $5 for regular Lyft rides and $10 for the premium services like Lux or Black. Fees also may be higher if you cancel a scheduled ride.
|Lyft Ride Type||Cancellation Fee|
|Lyft Lux, Black||$10|
You will be charged a cancellation fee in these situations
The Lyft cancellation policy states that the following situations can lead to a cancellation fee.
- Cancelling your ride after the cancellation window has passed (around 2 minutes)
- If your driver arrives at your pickup location and has to wait longer than the allotted time (typically around 5 minutes)
Cancelling your ride after the cancellation window has passed
After a driver accepts your ride request, there is only a short period of time to cancel the ride without being charged a fee.
The cancellation window is typically around 2 minutes. If more than 2 minutes has gone by and you cancel the ride, you will be charged a fee. Typically the app will warn you that a fee may occur.
An important thing to note is that your driver must be on time, within 5 minutes of the original estimated time
One important thing to note is that you will only be charged if the driver is on-time to arrive to you, within 5 minutes of the estimated time of arrival.
If your driver gets stuck in unexpected traffic and is going to be late to your pickup, you can cancel more than 2 minutes after being matched without being charged the fee.
No-show fee: When your driver arrives at your location and it takes you longer than ~5 minutes to reach the car
A driver can cancel your ride if they arrive at the pickup location and wait longer than the allotted wait time for the ride type, which is usually five minutes or longer. The driver must also attempt to contact you at least once.
Premium ride types like Lux and Lux Black offer longer wait time, around 10 minutes.
Drivers call it ‘wait 5 and drive.’ Time is money for drivers, so they are happy to cancel on you as soon as the 5 minute timer is up.
$2 fee for repeated cancellations
There is a $2 fee if you cancel 3 or more times during a 15 minute time frame, even if the cancellations were within the 2 minute window.
How to dispute cancellation fees on Lyft
Don’t think your fee was fair? You can dispute the fee inside the app, or at help.lyft.com.
Go to: Menu (☰) >’Ride history’ > Find the ride > Scroll to ‘Get help’ > Select ‘Dispute ride far or charge’ > Select “cancellation fee is wrong”
Each ride receipt has a “Get help” link that leads to a dispute form
You can also dispute charges by going to help.Lyft.com. Log in and click the Riding with Lyft option.
You will see a large button that says Dispute ride fare or charges. Select the ride, then choose the cancellation fee option.
You can also dispute the fee at help.lyft.com
- How to Contact Lyft Customer Support
- Overcharged by Lyft? What you can do
How to avoid cancellation fees on Lyft
There are two main ways to avoid cancellation fees: Only request a ride when you know that you want it, and make sure to show up to the driver as soon as they arrive.
Also, make sure that your pickup location is accurate. rivers go directly to the GPS location listed in the app and will cancel after 5 minutes if you’re not there.
Get flexible cancellations with Lyft Pink: Lyft Pink is a monthly membership for $9.99 per month that offers several perks, including flexible cancellations. Lyft Pink members get 3 free cancellations per month if you rebook the ride within 15 minutes.
How cancellation fees work for drivers
Drivers are paid cancellation fees to compensate them for the time and miles that they drive on a cancelled ride.
The cancellation fee for drivers is the greater of these two numbers: The minimum cancellation fee, or the mileage + time that they drove to the passenger, calculated according to the local rate card.
- Regular cancellations: $2 minimum, $15 maximum
- Scheduled ride cancels: $5 minimum, $15 maximum
When passengers cancel, drivers get paid a fee if the passenger cancellation window has passed (around 2 minutes), if the driver is on the way to the passenger, and if the driver is on track to arrive by the stated ETA.
For passenger no shows, drivers have to arrive at the passenger location, wait for the countdown to end, and attempt to contact the passenger at least once.
More Reading on Lyft
- What’s the Difference Between Lyft, Lyft XL, Lyft Line?
- Overcharged By Lyft? What to Do
- Lyft Codes for Existing Users? How to Save
Originally Published January 12, 2018 Filed Under: Lyft
About Doug H
Gig economy driver, writer, and expert since 2013. I created Ridesharing Driver to help drivers navigate all of the challenges we face in the on-demand world!
- Cynthia Prinzing says January 19, 2023 at 4:12 pm
I was in New York a month ago, December 2023 and I ordered a Lyft for 3:00 p.m. I did not notice until 3:05 that there was a text saying what kind of a vehicle it was. I texted that we would be out in 2 minutes. (Not that the driver knew this but I had a broken femur that had happened the night before and I had spent the night at the hospital but was not going to have surgery at either of the TWO hospitals I was at in Brooklyn and instead was heading out to JFK to rent a car to drive home to Minneapolis.. well my 22-year-old son was going to drive)
So I texted the driver and said we would be out in 2 minutes and then he called me immediately. I could not understand him because I don’t think he spoke English. All I could understand was he was saying “10 minutes”. I said 10 minutes…? what do you mean 10 minutes? Are you saying you’re not going to be here for 10 minutes? And he mumbled something again in a language I did not understand and said “10 minutes!” and I asked him specifically …… Are you here?….Can you let me know when you are here? Can you text me when you are here? And he HUNG UP ON ME. I was very confused because I did not understand that he WAS there. And why didn’t he just SAY he was there and by the time we went outside, I had gotten a cancellation notice because I was a “no-show”…. I tried to text him AND call, but it was blocked……AND I was charged for it. I had been using Uber for the few times we needed a car while we were in New York City, but just the day before, my cousin’s wife had said “oh, you should use Lyft because it’s a better deal than Uber”. So that was my first time using it on our trip. But I was upset at being charged as a no-show when I was actually speaking to the driver and all he would have had to say to me was, “I AM HERE”, which I obviously didn’t understand. Or why didn’t he text me back just saying “ok” when I texted that we would be out in 2 min. I have mostly used Uber (and even that not much) and I believe there is a 10 minute grace period so I assumed that it was a 10 minute grace. So coming out at 3:07 would have been within that range. I have gone back and forth via email with Lyft, but they keep insisting that I was a no-show. I think that the communication with their contract employee was unacceptable and that all he needed to do was tell me he was there or say “okay” when I texted will be out in 2 minutes. At this point it’s not so much about the $6 as the fact that I feel I was treated very badly and it was just a simple matter of that driver making an effort to communicate, which he did NOT. Just today I called my credit card to dispute the charge and it’s more about the principle than the money.
- Miss D says April 11, 2023 at 4:51 pm
While you may not like the policy, the simple fact is – on Lyft, the minute the driver arrives at the gps locator, the driver must “tap” the “ARRIVED”. That automatically generates a TEXT TO RIDER that your Driver is waiting for you. Do Riders believe that they are entitled to waste a drivers time, money & gas? The cancellation fee should be a minimum of $10 & max of $30 to stop these rude riders
Thanks for sharing this blog. There is no built-in function in the Lyft app to show you your refund’s status. You will be notified via email if you win your dispute and Lyft decides to return your funds. It can take several days for the service to respond.
People are so cheap. If you ask for something that requires pay like a service you should be required to pay its not rocket science. The drivers are driving their car on their gas. When you try to get out of paying them you are really ripping off the drivers by wasting the ware and tear on their car and gas it over three dollars a gallon. That means their wasting at least a gallon of gas going to get you. All you are doing is reimbursing the driver their gas by your cancelation fee. Lyft only pays them a percentage of your ride if it is taken. Otherwise they are literally wasting time and money since they furnish everything again lyft pays drivers a small percentage of what you pay when you pay for ride. People just always want stuff for free but uts not ok when you are taking it from someone’s kids mouth. If you could take something from someone’s kid than its ok for you to rip off the driver.
- Kevin says January 3, 2023 at 2:27 am
Yes some of the Lyft riders are so cheap. Expect too much for a cheap fare. How can they request a Lyft ride and expect the driver to show up and help them move their couch, sofa or even hail a Christmas tree or move their furniture or mattress by using the drivers. Come on people, be respectful and don’t treat drivers like sh*t as your moving man or slave.