Bangalore, India, is known to be a high-traffic city. So, commutes to the airport can be a headache for travelers– it can take passengers up to two hours by road to reach Kempegowda International Airport (BLR) from the city’s tech center, Electronic City. Enter Bangalore’s new heli-taxi service, which recently debuted and cuts that long, 40-mile commute to the airport down to 15 minutes flat.
Introduced by Thumby Aviation, the heli-taxi seats up to six passengers, according to Conde Nast Traveller India, and tickets for the service run about $65. That price includes a ride to/from the Kempegowda International Airport (BLR) terminal to/from the helipad in Electronic City and a carry-on bag weighing up to 33 pounds. Anything over that weight limit will have to be shipped on the ground for an additional fee. Flights currently operate in two shifts designed around peak business hours, with about three roundtrips feasible per shift. The first shift is between 6:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m., and the second is 3:00 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. Customers can book a seat through the Heli Taxii mobile app (available on Android/iOS).
Currently, the heli taxi is only available between Kempegowda International Airport (BLR) and Electronic City. The service will add more drop-off points once it has approval for helipads around the city. In the next two weeks, another airport, Bangalore’s HAL, will be added as an additional destination.
Heli taxis are among the up-and-coming helicopter transport services. BLADE Bounce has already been offering transfers for its users between New York’s three main airports (and smaller NYC airports) for $295 one way. In February 2017, the company expanded its service in Los Angeles.