Waymo robotaxis to shuttle Super Bowl fans in Phoenix
Next month's Super Bowl in Phoenix will be a huge coming-out party for Waymo, whose driverless vehicles will transport fans from the airport to downtown venues.
Why it matters: For many Super Bowl visitors, it will be their first opportunity to ride in a driverless car.
- Phoenix is the only place where Waymo robotaxis are available to the general public; San Francisco and Los Angeles will come next.
- For Waymo, it's an opportunity to stress-test its service during what will be one of the city's busiest weekends of the year.
- It's also a way to keep drunk drivers off the road on Super Bowl Sunday, when officials typically see a spike in deadly crashes.
Driving the news: Waymo is partnering with the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee to incorporate autonomous taxis into fan experiences the week before and during the Big Game.
- Visitors (and locals) who download the Waymo app can summon the "Waymo Driver" in an autonomous Jaguar I-PACE to pick them up from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport via the 44th Street and Washington PHX Sky Train Station.
- They can also hail a robotaxi for rides in and around downtown.
Yes, but: The Super Bowl venue itself — State Farm Stadium in Glendale, west of Phoenix — isn't in Waymo's service area, which means fans will need to find another way to the game.
- Waymo has been operating its public robotaxis in Phoenix's eastern suburbs since 2020, and recently expanded to include downtown and the airport.
- Plus, Waymo won't say how many robotaxis will be in service that week — more than usual, but you might have to wait if you really want a robot driver.
What they're saying: "There's no bigger stage for our 24/7 ride-hailing service than transporting people from all over the globe to and from the airport and around downtown for the many exciting activities surrounding the Big Game," said Saswat Panigrahi, Waymo Chief Product Officer.