With Uber’s luxury underwater travel service scUber set to launch on the Barrier Reef next week, the rideshare company has backed up the news with yet another announcement for their latest initiative, Uber Air.
Set to kick off in Melbourne next year, this flying taxi service will connect passengers from Melbourne CBD to Melbourne Tullamarine Airport within 10 minutes for just AU$100.
Uber is also set to introduce the new service in Dallas and Los Angeles and will be building a new aircraft to taxi passengers between destinations. The drone-like craft takes off and lands vertically, making it ideal for arriving and departing on shopping centres and hotel rooftops, and is being created by Uber’s manufacturing partners, including Boeing and Bell Helicopters. Each craft will have space to carry four passengers and a pilot with a hand luggage allowance of 18kg per passenger.
“Australian governments have adopted a forward-looking approach to ridesharing and future transport technology,” regional general manager for Uber in Australia, New Zealand and North Asia Susan Anderson said at an Uber summit in Washington.
“This, coupled with Melbourne’s unique demographic and geospatial factors, and culture of innovation and technology, makes Melbourne the perfect third launch city for Uber Air.”
Test flights will commence in 2020 with commercial flights hopefully available by 2023. If all goes well, Uber hopes to implement the service in other Australian cities, particularly Geelong, turning the usual hour-long car trip into a 25-minute journey by air.