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Using Uber for College Football Playoff events this weekend? Here's what you need to know

 Tampa Bay Lightning mascot Thunderbug gets into a Uber car before a press conference at Amalie Arena last October. Look for Uber prices to spike during the college football national championship game.
[JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times]

Tampa Bay Lightning mascot Thunderbug gets into a Uber car before a press conference at Amalie Arena last October. Look for Uber prices to spike during the college football national championship game. [JAMES BORCHUCK | Times]

Catching a ride for the big game?

You and at least 14,000 others. Here are a few things you should know about getting around Tampa Bay this weekend:

> How much is it going to cost to get me to the game with Uber?

It will depend on how many people are requesting at once. Since Uber expects to move about 20 percent of the game attendees, you can bet surge price will be in effect in the hours before the game, but it will be worse immediately after. Surge price means the normal fare could be sharply higher, with the formula based on demand and destination.

Related coverage: Locals in Tampa Bay hope to cash in on last minute football fans through Airbnb

> How do I get an Uber or Lyft after the game?

Download the app, set up an account and an Uber driver will pick you up at the designated ridesharing area, located in the lot behind Steinbrenner Field. The most direct route from the stadium will be to take the pedestrian bridge over Dale Mabry Highway. When you get to the lot, call or text your driver to find out which numbered parking space they're waiting in.

> What if I want to drive and just park there instead?

Good luck. Parking spaces are pretty limited and start at $50 if you want to be at the stadium. You can buy them in advance at collegefootballplayoff.com/transportation

> Where do I pick up an Uber after the Usher concert?

Throughout the weekend, ridesharing lanes will be set up around Curtis Hixon Park and in other major championship event areas, similar to Tampa Bay Lightning games at Amalie Arena. To make it easier, Uber recommends waiting to request a ride after you get to the pickup area.

> But I already spent my money on tickets and beer!

Some free Uber rides will be available, thanks to a promotion with AT&T. To get it, select the "FOOTBALL" option (if you're in the right area it'll show up next to the uberX, uberXL buttons) in the app from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. The promotion is available to anyone traveling within the downtown Tampa area, regardless of their cell phone provider.

The company is also installing Samsung tablets in 20 vehicles for riders to watch live football games or DirecTV for free.

Uber will also be integrated into the Tampa Bay Sports Commission's CFP Social Passport app, which lets users request rides and earn prizes, such as two game-day tickets and free Uber rides, as they check into events throughout the weekend.

Contact Alli Knothe at aknothe@tampabay.com. Follow @KnotheA.

Using Uber for College Football Playoff events this weekend? Here's what you need to know 01/05/17 [Last modified: Thursday, January 5, 2017 4:43pm]
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© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

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