From The Blog

How Island Access Works: Uber, Lyft & Other Car Services

Did you know that all commercial vehicles entering the island must pay commercial access fees, including Uber, Lyft and other car services? (A one-day gate pass starts at $20 and an annual pass starts at $280; rates vary by vehicle size.) Some companies pay in advance and pass through the gate without stopping; others may have to stop to pay for access. If the company or driver doesn’t come to Kiawah frequently, they may not be aware of the fee. This could leave the passenger, even a member or guest, on the hook for the entry fee. When a car service is transporting a member to their home, it’s still a commercial vehicle that is required to pay the fee.

Talk to your driver or company in advance about the access fee to understand if they have paid for access or will need to stop and pay. Clarify if they will pay or if you are expected to cover the access cost. Uber is one company that pays in advance for their drivers’ access, but Lyft drivers must stop to pay each time.

Some transportation service companies that pay fees in advance include:

  • Charleston Black Cab
  • Coastal Limo of Charleston
  • Going Coastal Transportation (GCT)
  • Marquee Limo Company
  • SC Express Chauffeured Transportation
  • Uber

Commercial Access Fees Pay for Island Infrastructure and Keep Assessments Lower

Commercial access fees pay for the maintenance and repair of island roadways and infrastructure. In 2023, commercial access fees accounted for 30% of the $7.3 million that the association put into its reserve fund, more than the amount paid by members through their assessments. Without these fees in place, members would need to fund more of the island’s infrastructure replacement themselves. To protect members from incurring this expense, no commercial vehicles, including car services, taxis and ride-hailing services, may be authorized under member guest passes.