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Lyft Adds Late Night Taco Bell Stops to New App Experience in Orange County

The so-called Taco Mode is being tested in the OC starting Thursday

Promo for the upcoming Taco Bell / Lyft collab
Taco Bell
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

A new program launching in Orange County this week plans to partner Taco Bell up with ridesharing app Lyft to let passengers hit the drive-thru on their way to their ultimate destination. It’s called Taco Mode, appropriately enough, and reps for Lyft say the partnership will be baked right into the app itself.

Taco Mode’s initial rollout will come July 27 to 29, and again August 3 to 5, in Orange County only. The idea is simple: customers who get picked up between 9 p.m. and 2 a.m. in “designated areas” (probably parts of the OC close enough to a Taco Bell) will have the option to engage said Taco Mode, which will reroute the driver to the nearest Taco Bell before heading on to the final stop. Because this is a limited promotion, some diners may even get treated to free food and t-shirts and loads of other promotional materials.

Taco Bell, which is headquartered in Orange County, says they hope to roll out Taco Mode to Lyft riders across America by 2018, with an expansion into an unknown number of other prime markets before then. It’s not hard to see the benefit of at least jumping to Los Angeles right away, considering the prevalence of Lyft riders moving between bars and home on weekend evenings across the county — many of whom are stopping at taco trucks and fast food restaurants already.