Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport or DFW is an absolutely legendary airport. More than 67 million passengers go in and out of the doors at DFW each and every year making it the 4th busiest hotel in the US.
For rideshare drivers, this means DFW is a huge earning opportunity if taken advantage of properly, but all too often we find drivers that waste time and fail when driving passengers from and too DFW because they just don’t know the rules of the airport or a great airport strategy.
Well, we want Drivers in the Dallas/Fortworth area to reap the benefits of having one of the world’s largest airports in their backyard, that’s why we’ve put together this instructional guide to help Uber and Lyft drivers be successful when driving DFW.
See the topics covered in this blog post below:
- What do I need to know or do before arriving at DFW?
- What airport permits do I need and how do I get one?
- Where is the rideshare waiting area at DFW?
- What are the passenger pick up rules at DFW?
- What are the passenger drop off rules at DFW?
- When is the best time to drive at DFW?
- What is the best DFW driving strategy?
Let’s dive in!
What you need to know/do before you arrive at DFW and enter the airport Queue
DFW, like most other airports, works as a first come, first serve or FIFO for rideshare drivers. This means that you’ll enter a queue as soon as you get inside the “designated area” and simply wait for your number to get called.
This can sometimes be fast, but if you come at a bad time you can be waiting for more than an hour to be pinged.
However, before you get to the airport there are a few steps that you should take to ensure that you’re prepared.
Step #1: Get your trade dress:
Every rideshare driver knows that having your trade dress is an absolute must, especially when you’re driving at airports. Without these decals you can easily pick up a ticket or fine. So before you do anything you must make sure that you have your Uber or Lyft decals. You can easily pick these up from one of the rideshare companies.
To get your Uber Decal you can visit the local Greenlight Hub.
Step #2: Get your free airport vehicle decal:
At DFW, not only do you need your trade dress, but you also need a special sticker for the airport. Luckily, it’s very easy to obtain. Just complete the below steps:
- Print out and complete this form
- Visit the Ground Transportation office at 2444 East 30th St between 8:30 and 4:00 Monday through Thursday or 8:30 and 2:00 on Fridays to pick up your decal
You should take note that rideshare drivers DO NOT need a for-hire permit to obtain a airport decal at DFW.
Once you receive your decal, you should place it on your front windshield right below your Uber sticker.
Where is the Uber/Lyft waiting area at DFW?
Ok! So you’re ready to head over to DFW to pick up some easy rides, but before you go you need to know where you should be waiting!
The first place you should go is the Uber/Lyft staging lot which is located right near terminal A off of service road.
Check out our custom map of the airport below. For directions, simply click on the map and you’ll be routed to Google Maps.
Again, once you’re in the staging lot you’ll be automatically entered into the queue.
How should Uber and Lyft drivers pick up passengers at DFW?
Pickups at DFW have gotten easier and easier to complete over the past few years. Now, when a rider requests a ride from a terminal they will be given a letter for their corresponding terminal and must meet you at the green curbs that indicate the rideshare pick up zone.
How should Uber and Lyft drivers drop off passengers at DFW?
Dropping off passengers at DFW is easy as can be. You can simply drop passengers off at their requested terminal and that’s it! No special rules here.
One thing to note is that both Uber and Lyft offer some form of a re-match that allows drivers that just dropped off a passenger to immediately pick up a passenger. This doesn’t always happen and if it does, it will be within 2 minutes of your dropoff. So DON’T
When is the best time to drive at DFW?
As we said in the beginning of our guide, DFW is not only the main airport for Dallas, but also one of the busiest in the world, there are tons of passengers traveling through every single day no matter the season. However, you’re not the only driver that knows that. So there is also usually a ton of drivers waiting at the airport.
So the best time to drive at DFW is when the ratio of passengers to drivers is at its absolute highest.
To understand when this ratio is highest, check your free Gridwise app and compare queue times to passenger arrival times.
There are of course certain times of year that receive more passengers like Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Years, and the Saturday before big football games (Go Cowboys!), however, the best way to understand rider demand at your airport is with Gridwise.
What is the Best Strategy to use at DFW?
Pick up a passenger on the way to the airport!
Don’t just be a driver that picks up passengers at the airport! Also pick them up when they are heading to the airport. Gridwise does a great job of telling you when there is also a peak in airport departures, so you can hang around near hotels at that time to maximize your chances of an airport ride.
Do not cancel on a passenger after you’ve accepted a fare
If you do, you will be bumped to the bottom of the queue and your wait starts all over again. The good news is that if it’s a short ride, some companies let you jump back in line after you’ve dropped that passenger off.
Always be prepared
You never know when law enforcement will show up, so always keep your driver’s license, insurance card, and registration handy. And don’t forget to have your placard displayed.
Now you should be ready to make that drive to LAX and actually earn money instead of snacking on candy from Sunoco. I’m not the only one who does that, right?