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Transportation and Mobility

Rideshares From LAX Are Pricey, So These USC Students Created An App To Make It Easier To Actually Share Rides

The LAX entrance with a sign that shows three different routes to drive. One goes to the arrivals floor, another to departing, and the last to Sepulveda Boulevard. In the back are the plyons and big LAX sign. Palm trees line the wide highway, while the sun slowly sets.
With spring break on the horizon, USC students can now test out a new app, Shairport, to share rides with other students to LAX.
(Mario Tama
Getty Images)
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Rides from USC to LAX can get costly on a college budget, so a few students made an app to help make traveling to and from more manageable.

How it works: The Shairport app helps USC students connect with each other so they can share rides from L.A. International Airport back to campus, allowing them to avoid shouldering the full cost of a rideshare service. It's specific to USC, and all riders must log in using their student credentials.

Why it matters: Ordering a Lyft or Uber to and from LAX can be costly — upwards of $80 for a 20-minute ride — and price surges make it hard for students to catch affordable rides. "For students on a budget, that is a huge blow coming back to campus," says James McColl, a junior at USC who along with classmates pitched the idea in their software development class.

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Why now: USC already has an LAX shuttle service that takes students to the airport, but there's no alternative to get them back to campus, McColl says. This weekend will be the true test for Shairport, he adds, since Spring Break starts next week.

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