ARIZONA NEWS

Waymo to start charging Phoenix-area riders who use its driverless cars

Feb 20, 2018, 7:01 PM | Updated: Feb 21, 2018, 9:34 am
FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016, file photo, the Waymo driverless car is displayed during a G...

FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016, file photo, the Waymo driverless car is displayed during a Google event in San Francisco. A federal criminal investigation into alleged espionage at Uber has indefinitely delayed a trial over whether the beleaguered ride-hailing service stole self-driving car technology from Waymo, a spinoff from Google. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)

(AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)

PHOENIX — Residents across the Valley will soon be able to pay for a driverless car to pick them up.

This comes after the Arizona Department of Transportation approved Waymo’s application to become a transportation network company similar to Uber and Lyft.

That means Waymo can now start charging to pick up and drop off riders with their autonomous Chrysler minivans.

“As we continue to test drive our fleet of vehicles in greater Phoenix, we’re taking all the steps necessary to launch our commercial service this year,” a Waymo spokesperson said in a statement emailed to KTAR News 92.3 FM.

Waymo began testing their self-driving cars in Phoenix early last year, but there was always someone in the driver’s seat.

That changed in November when the company began testing its cars without someone in the driver’s seat in the Phoenix area.

During that time, riders could ride for free using the Waymo app. Now, they’ll have to pay a fee.

It’s unclear what Waymo will charge riders, but it’ll likely create competition for Uber and Lyft.

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Waymo to start charging Phoenix-area riders who use its driverless cars