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SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Lyft has partnered with Hertz Global Holdings Inc to offer rental cars to its drivers, the ride-hailing company said on Thursday.
Daily, weekly and monthly car rentals from Hertz are now available as part of a pilot program for Lyft drivers in Las Vegas, said Oliver Hsiang, Lyft's vice president of partnerships.
Aimed at drivers who do not have their own cars or those that meet Lyft standards, such as having four doors, the plan will be expanded to other markets, Hsiang said. He declined to offer a timeline.
Drivers in Las Vegas will be able to sign up for Lyft at Hertz locations. They will pay up to about $65 a day for rentals but will earn 20 percent to 30 percent more than other drivers because they will be driving SUVs and charging passengers a premium for the bigger cars, Hsiang said.
Lyft is also partnering with Shell to offer its drivers cheaper gasoline, said David Rust, Lyft's head of operations strategy. The discount will be available starting at 12,500 Shell gas stations in San Francisco, Chicago and Los Angeles.
Thursday's partnerships were the most recent unveiled by San Francisco-based Lyft to give it an edge against Uber [UBER.UL], the ride-hailing market heavyweight.
Uber also offers car rental programs for drivers, as well as car-leasing programs.
Starting early next month, Lyft drivers also will be able to transfer their fare earnings directly into their bank accounts, rather than wait for payday, Lyft executive Tali Rapaport said at a media event.
The company has worked to distinguish itself from its larger rival, Uber, in part by positioning itself as the company that treats drivers better.
For example, drivers can collect tips on the Lyft app, though not on Uber. Lyft Co-founder and President John Zimmer said $40 million has been distributed to Lyft drivers in tips since the service began.
The company said it has more than 100,000 active drivers on its app doing a million rides a week. Lyft operates in 150 cities, although it is not available outside of the United States.
In September, Lyft announced a partnership with China's largest ride-hailing company, Didi Kuaidi, allowing each company to serve the other's passengers.
Lyft users traveling in China will have access to the Didi Kuaidi app and Didi Kuaidi clients will have the option to use Lyft's U.S. services.
Reporting by Heather Somerville; Editing by Bernard Orr and Dan Grebler