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Dubai introduces Dh350 air taxi rides to reduce travel time from 45 minutes to just 10

In a few years, Dubai residents will have the opportunity to traverse the city via air taxis, priced at Dh350 per passenger. Joby, a US-based aviation firm, offered KT a glimpse of the flying taxi set to launch in Dubai by the end of 2025.

Riders will experience awe-inspiring city views while benefiting from the practicality of avoiding traffic congestion.

According to Bonny Simi, Joby’s president of operations, these air taxis can significantly reduce travel time between two points in Dubai, potentially by up to 70 percent. For instance, the journey from Dubai International Airport to Palm Jumeirah, which currently takes 45 minutes to an hour by road, will be cut down to just 10 to 12 minutes by air taxi.

Each air taxi can accommodate four passengers in addition to the pilot, with ample storage space for luggage.

“These air taxis will provide Dubai residents with a comfortable, hassle-free, and convenient travel experience,” stated Simi.

Flying at altitudes ranging from 500 to 1,000 meters, passengers can expect a tranquil and picturesque journey, with noise levels as low as 45 decibels.

“The altitude will be tailored to the travel distance, with longer trips reaching heights of nearly 1,000 meters and shorter ones hovering between 500 to 100 meters,” explained Simi.

Pilots, equipped with commercial licenses, undergo a six- to 8-week training program specific to the aircraft to ensure safe and efficient navigation of the skies.

“Passengers will have the option to book their air taxi trips through Joby’s app or Uber, with even solo travelers able to secure a ride,” she assured.

Regarding charging between trips, Simi noted, “The air taxi can recharge from 0 to 100 percent in just 10 minutes. Upon landing at vertiports, ground staff will swiftly connect the charging points before passengers disembark. Once new passengers board and the aircraft is prepared for takeoff, the plugs are promptly removed, completing the charging process during passenger transitions.”

Described as a hybrid of a helicopter and a plane, the aircraft boasts “remarkable stability,” as stated by the manufacturer.

Combining the vertical takeoff capabilities of a helicopter with the smooth acceleration of a plane, it is powered by six propulsion units that seamlessly transition from vertical to horizontal orientation. This enables it to swiftly reach speeds of up to 320 km/h and cover distances of approximately 160 km on a single charge.

With six propellers, each housing two motors, and a total of 12 motors and four batteries per air taxi, Simi emphasized the unparalleled reliability and paramount importance of safety during flight.

Initially, four vertiports are set for construction in key hubs across Dubai, including Dubai Airport, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Downtown, and Dubai Marina. Looking ahead, Simi envisions the possibility of vertiports atop towers and within various communities, foreseeing the air taxi as a primary mode of travel for many in the future.

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