If having a helicopter available on demand with the tap of an app is one of your dreams, your dream is about to come true. Uber will be starting Uber Copter flights in New York beginning on July 9. Eight-minute helicopter flights will bring riders from Lower Manhattan to J.F.K. Airport, saving lots of time over car or rail transportation.
According to The New York Times, Uber Copter is a new service Uber will be launching soon, offering helicopter flights via its Uber app. Uber Copter will begin its service in New York City and eventually expand to other cities. The New York Times, Uber Copter to Offer Flights From Lower Manhattan to J.F.K.
Initially, Uber Copter will only be available to Uber Rewards members who have attained Platinum or Diamond Status. You can find out whether you qualify by looking in the app to see whether Uber Copter is shown as an option when you’re planning a trip from Manhattan to J.F.K. Airport on or after the launch date.
Flights will begin on July 9 and will be available during afternoon rush hour Monday through Friday. Like Uber car fares, pricing for Uber Copter rides will be adjusted according to demand. Uber predicts that the average fare for an Uber Copter ride will be about $200 to $225.
Uber Copter rides can be reserved up to five days in advance or on demand using the app. After booking a flight, passengers will receive a boarding pass from Uber in an email message.
Uber Copter passengers will be picked up by an Uber car and driven to the heliport near the Staten Island Ferry. Once on the helicopter, passengers will be shown a 90-second safety video before takeoff. Upon arriving at J.F.K. Airport they will be taken to the terminal by another Uber car. Uber estimates the total trip will take 30 minutes, including the 8-minute helicopter ride.
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Each Uber Copter will carry two pilots and up to five passengers. Weight is an issue on helicopters, so each passenger will be able to bring on board one suitcase weighing up to 40 lb (18 kg) and one personal bag.
Uber Copter is the first service to be offered by Uber Elevate, a part of Uber whose mission is to bring air transportation to Uber’s customers. A representative from Uber Elevate explained to Engadget: “Uber Copter offers the first real demonstration of the Elevate experience. We’ve built Uber Copter to provide us with insight and real-world experience as we continue to lay the foundation for Uber Air. This is Uber’s first multi-modal option, integrating an 8-minute helicopter flight with an Uber trip on both ends with a single tap of a button. Uber Rewards Platinum and Diamond members will get the first opportunity to try this new fast and seamless way to get between Manhattan and JFK.”
This video from Uber shows its plans for the future of air transportation for the company:
Are you interested in using Uber Copter for a helicopter ride in New York? Would you like Uber Copter to become available where you live? Would you use Uber Copter to save time getting from Point A to Point B?
Share your thoughts in the Comments section below!
*Helicopter image (edited) courtesy of SeeBeeW via Flickr and Creative Commons