News World US US touts free ride shares to boost jabs

US touts free ride shares to boost jabs

The Biden administration has announced new measures aimed at getting more Americans vaccinated. Photo: Getty
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Americans going to get a coronavirus vaccination will be able to catch a free ride there after the White House announced a new partnership with Lyft and Uber.

The Biden administration has also partnered with McDonald’s USA, which will roll out new packaging to encourage more Americans to get vaccinated.

It comes as part of a series of steps aimed at boosting US coronavirus vaccination rates in time for President Joe Biden’s July 4 reopening deadline.

Mr Biden has set a target of getting 70 per cent of US adults inoculated by July 4 so the country can be safely reopened for celebrations and small Independence Day holiday gatherings.

Lyft and Uber will provide free rides to anyone going to a vaccination site to get a coronavirus jab.

“Building on last week’s announcements to increase access and vaccine education and outreach efforts, today the president will highlight an… effort by the ride-sharing companies Lyft and Uber to provide free rides to anyone going to a vaccination site to get vaccinated,” the White House said in a statement.

An Uber spokesman told Reuters the company would pay for the rides.

Uber has already been offering free or discounted rides.

It announced 10 million such rides in December in addition to the 10 million free rides it announced in March of last year.

Lyft also said it will fund the rides.

“Ride codes will cover $US15 ($A19) each way, which based on previous rides given to vaccination sites, we expect to cover most, if not all, of riders’ fares,” the company said.

McDonald’s joins Biden’s ‘We can do this’ campaign

McDonald’s will roll out new McCafe cups to encourage vaccinations. Photo: Getty

A massive Times Square billboard, located above one of the country’s most iconic McDonald’s restaurants, will show COVID-19 vaccine information.

It is part of Mr Biden’s “We can do this” public education campaign that McDonald’s announced on Tuesday (local time) that it had joined.

The fast-food chain will also roll out new McCafé cups and McDelivery seal stickers that will feature a link to a vaccination information website about protecting yourself from COVID-19, and how to book an appointment to get the jab.

“We all want to protect ourselves and our loved ones and be together with our communities again. McDonald’s is excited to be doing our part for the people we serve, providing them with simple information that can help keep them safe,” Genna Gent, McDonald’s USA vice president, said in a statement.

“This is a team effort – it takes all of us. We’re proud to enter this partnership to provide trusted, independently verified information about COVID-19 vaccines to our customers in the nearly 14,000 communities we serve.”

The latest actions also include vaccination sites at community colleges, the White House said in a statement.

Mr Biden also will announce funding through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for states for on-the-ground efforts to promote vaccinations, such as phone banking and door-to-door canvassing.

He will discuss the steps in a meeting with a bipartisan group of governors on Tuesday (local time).

-with AAP