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Uber to offer helicopter rides, prices likely to be sky-high

Monday, 18 January 2016 | By Dinushi Dias


You might soon be able to get a helicopter ride home thanks to a new partnership between Europe’s largest aerospace company Airbus Group SE and ride-sharing giant Uber.


The project, commencing at Sundance Film Festival in Utah, will offer on-demand transport in H125 and H130 helicopters.


“It’s a pilot project, we’ll see where it goes – but it’s pretty exciting,” Airbus Chief Executive Tom Enders told The Wall Street Journal.


Uber first trialled helicopter ride-sharing in 2013 from Manhattan to the Hamptons and at major events including the Cannes Film Festival and Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival.


Neither party has revealed how much a helicopter ride will be priced but The Wall Street Journal reports that trips were priced up to several thousand US dollars during testing.


The project comes as Airbus Group looks to innovative strategies to overcome a recent downturn helicopter sales triggered by lulling oil prices.


This has resulted in slowing demand from Airbus Group’s traditional market of oil and gas companies that were once large consumers of expensive commercial helicopters.


Airbus Group has also just opened a new venture capital fund with $US150 million in secured funding to direct toward new startups in aerospace, data analytics, drones, security and satellite technologies.