Turns out transporting people really is very hard. In dense cities, it’s competitive: Riders might choose to use public transit, ride-hail, or even the bike- and scooter-share networks that now blanket so many city sidewalks. In less dense places, the transportation business is pricey: Dispatching vehicles to retrieve far-flung passengers takes time and plenty of fuel. And transportation firms generally must contend with regulators, another oft-expensive hurdle. In October 2017, California briefly shut down Chariot’s operations in the state after discovering some drivers did not have proper licenses.