Back in July, Lyft offered to give $550 in credit to Chicago residents who proved they could live without their car for a month, substituting a mixture of Lyft, Zipcar, bike shares and public transit. It’s now offering a similar deal to residents in 35 other US cities …

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The exact deal varies with the city, but the ones we checked all seem to provide around $500 in credit, split between several different transport options – with Lyft itself of course presented as the main one.

For example, for New York:

Win $445 to ride. See how it takes all kinds of wheels to make city travel easy (and help reduce traffic congestion and carbon emissions along the way). Enter the 30-day #DitchYourCar challenge and leave your car at home for your chance to win: $300 Lyft Shared credit; 1 month Zipcar membership & free activation, plus $100 drive credit; $14.95 Citi Bike credit.

While in San Francisco:

Win $525 to ride. See how it takes all kinds of wheels to make city travel easy (and help reduce traffic congestion and carbon emissions along the way). Enter the 30-day #DitchYourCar challenge and leave your car at home for your chance to win: $300 Lyft Shared credit; 1 month Zipcar membership & free activation, plus $100 drive credit; $94 credit for a Clipper card loaded with a monthly Muni “A” pass, which provides unlimited rides on all Muni services, including cable cars and travel between BART stations for one month (within San Francisco city limits).

Lyft President John Zimmer argued to The Verge that it was more than just a marketing gimmick.

Rather, this is part of a concerted effort to jolt Americans out of their comfort zones and persuade them to give up the convenience of personal car ownership for good, he said in an interview with The Verge.

“There’s enthusiasm to try it,” Zimmer said. “By making it a movement, by making it an event, people are like, ‘Oh, let me try this experiment.’ Then they realize, ‘Wow, I get all this time back. I’m actually saving money. I’m more relaxed.’”

Personally, I already live without a car, walking and cycling most places, with public transit picking up the slack. But that’s very easy, living child-free in central London. What about you? Could you see yourself giving it a go, or do you consider it a non-starter for your lifestyle? Let us know in the comments.


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