Domestic passengers face new rideshare rules at SFO

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- As a frequent business traveler, Chris DiLucca, who just arrived from Idaho, knows his way around San Francisco International Airport. But Wednesday morning, he struggled to find his Uber due to a big change at the airport.

Airport officials say they get close to 30,000 rideshare users every day. In an effort to reduce traffic congestion, curbside pick-up for domestic arrivals is no longer available. Those passengers will now be picked up on the fifth floor of the domestic hourly parking garage.

DiLucca didn't know about the change.

RELATED: New rideshare rules for domestic pick-ups going into effect at SFO Wednesday

"And there are no signs either of where to go. I just heard you talk about Uber. So, I was just like, I will just follow these guys," says DiLucca with a hearty laugh.

However, there are signs posted throughout SFO's three domestic terminals, directing passengers looking for their Uber or Lyft of where to go. The new location is about a three-minute walk for passengers leaving the arrival hall.

Level 5 of the garage has several lettered zones. Three of them, zones B, D, and F, each has a big white tent, which are the three designated spots for pick-up.

RELATED: SFO moving all rideshare pick-ups at domestic terminals

The tents are surrounded by new loading zones, each with expanded waiting areas and SFO staff to help guide drivers and passengers.

"The congestion has been so bad, and I feel like it's been affecting everybody. I think it's a decent policy that hopefully should get people to their terminals faster," says passenger Jeffery Blankstein, who lives in Burlingame.
Most drivers seems optimistic, but Uber driver Ganzorig Zorigt thinks the real test will be during peak commute hours.

"Right now it is slow, so it wasn't so bad," says Zorigt, who dropped off his first passenger just after 7 a.m.

"There is (also) only one lane to come up here," he added, which is another issue for him.

Airport officials insist the change will save passengers time.

"In peak periods, it actually takes five to 15 minutes curbside to wait for an Uber of Lyft pick-up. We think in the long run, this could be better," says Doug Yakel, a spokesman for SFO.

The new change does not apply to international passengers or passengers using taxis. And passengers departing on a domestic flight can still be dropped off at the terminal.
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