I tried the first self-driving public transit in the United States - and now I'm excited for the future of travel

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I tried the first self-driving public transit in the United States - and now I'm excited for the future of travel

navya arma shuttle

Matt Weinberger/Business Insider

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I may have come to Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show, but there was one other thing I knew I had to do while I was there - I needed to ride the downtown Las Vegas shuttle, the first-ever driverless public transit test program in the country.

Since its launch in November 2017, the shuttle has given 10,000 riders a free lift around a little, 0.6-mile stretch of downtown Las Vegas. The program was co-created by AAA and a French transportation company called Keolis, with the actual shuttle built by a self-driving car startup called Navya ARMA.

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On my last day in Las Vegas, I trekked up to Container Park, where the shuttle loop begins and ends. And after my short, ten-to-fifteen minute ride, I have to say: If this is the future of public transit, sign me up.

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