As coronavirus cases continue to rise across the United States, Lyft is enticing people to get on the road for Thanksgiving — a message that doesn’t jibe with the recommendations from many local health and government officials.
Lyft, while best known for its ride-hail services, also has a rental car offering in some markets and it’s trying to leverage the upcoming holiday as a marketing opportunity. Through push notifications shared by some customers on social media Wednesday, the company sent the message: “Last-minute Thanksgiving plans? Rent a car and make them happen.” Emails received by some customers contained similar messaging.
Unsurprisingly, some recipients didn’t take too kindly to the call-to-action given the latest surge in the pandemic. “No, @lyft. Read the news,” tweeted one person. Another tweeted that the push was “WILDLY irresponsible. Last time I checked we were in the midst of a worsening pandemic and no one should be going anywhere for Thanksgiving.”
“We recognize that there are changing local guidelines and regulations related to Covid-19 and Thanksgiving travel, and as always, we encourage our users to follow those guidelines — we should have made that more clear in the email,” a Lyft spokesperson said in a statement to CNN Business when asked about the effort.