Today, we’re excited to announce the launch of Chariot’s second city: Austin, Texas!

As one of the country’s fastest-growing and most vibrant cities, Austin faces congestion challenges with the continued growth of its population and cars on the road. Working with local transportation leaders and community partners, together we recognized that Chariot can provide a unique mobility solution to Austinites, starting with the daily commute.

We’re proud to establish Austin as our first market outside our home of San Francisco. Starting today, users will be able to sign up to bring the first Chariot shuttle routes to their neighborhoods in the coming weeks. Here’s how Chariot’s crowdsourcing works:

  • Chariot offers fast, reliable and affordable shuttle routes with fixed stops in neighborhoods and transit hubs.
  • Routes are launched based on where people commute from, and where they need to go. Often, people use Chariots as part of their commute for their last mile of their trips to or from public transit stops.
  • If there’s not already a route serving your area, your sign-up counts as a “vote” to launch one in your neighborhood. You can increase the votes by sharing with friends, colleagues and neighbors doing a similar commute to “crowdsource” your own route.

In partnership with the City of Austin, Rocky Mountain Institute, Movability Austin and CapMetro, we’re proud to announce that Chariot will also roll out an initial service offering starting Monday in the 6th Street Market District serving the hundreds of employees at Whole Foods Market and GSD&M. These initial routes will be downtown circulators that pick up employees at the MetroRail Downtown stop and Republic Square for CapMetro buses. Chariot will bring riders the rest of the way to their offices in the West End, and then back at the end of the day. This partnership is a new model we’re working on that demonstrates how employers can band together and aggregate demand through Chariot’s commuting solutions.

“This is exactly the kind of tech-enabled transportation option that’s going to give Austinites more ways to get around town in a way that will address traffic congestion,” said Austin Mayor Steve Adler. “Hats off to Whole Foods and GSD&M for supporting for their employees, and a big Austin welcome to Chariot. By helping people get to work, they are helping Austin move in the right direction.”

As part of Ford Motor Company’s City Solutions effort, our shared goals are to create a better commute for employees, help solve Austin’s mobility challenges, and develop more efficient, convenient, clean and affordable transit options for the city of Austin.

Going out with a group with friends or colleagues, and want a designated driver? Beyond the commute, we’re also launching its Chariot Charters service where you can directly book a comfortable 14-passenger chariot and ride in style. Find more info here.

To debut the service, we’ll be running special pop-up routes for people going to and from the Austin City Limits festival this weekend. Open the app on Friday after 2:30pm, or Saturday and Sunday mornings anytime after 10:30am, to sign up for Chariot and grab a complimentary seat. (Demand will be high and seating will be limited, so we recommend you book your seats early!)

We thank our partners in Austin for the warm welcome, and look forward to meeting you on your next ride!

Ali Vahabzadeh

Chariot CEO & co-founder