Global company uses a fleet of helicopters, private jets, and seaplanes; continues transition to eVTOL aircraft for short-distance urban travel.
New York City, New York–based Blade Urban Air Mobility (UAM), more commonly known as Blade, considers itself to be more than a helicopter, private jet, and seaplane charter operation. The company markets itself as a global UAM platform powered by technology and committed to enabling cost-effective air transportation alternatives for some of the most congested ground routes in the United States and around the world. Blade partners with a network of aircraft operators to provide air transportation services.
In New York City, through a partnership with Heli Inc., Blade offers five-minute helicopter rides between Manhattan and John F. Kennedy International Airport (KJFK), as well as similar services between the city and the Hamptons on Long Island. The company also offers flights with Helijet between Vancouver and Victoria in British Columbia, Canada, and partners with Héli Sécurité for flights between Nice, France, and the city–state of Monaco in Europe. Blade also offers private charters from its operational sites.
Flexible Options on the Blade App
Blade’s services are available through its mobile app. Passengers can download the Blade app to their device, sign up for an account, and enter their contact information and credit card details. When a passenger wants to get somewhere, they can select an existing flight at a time that works well for them. If no existing flights are convenient for the passenger’s time frames, the passenger can crowdsource their preferred flight at a convenient time, where any remaining seats can then be sold to other passengers.
Blade’s long-term goal is to make aviation more accessible by preparing for the adoption of quiet, carbon-neutral, cost-effective electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft that its investors and partners are currently developing.
Air Medical Services
In September 2021, Blade completed the acquisition of Trinity Air Medical, creating a point-to-point organ transplant transport service. The Blade MediMobility group partners with local hospitals to provide cost-effective, rapid movement of organs and transplant teams.
One of MediMobility’s initiatives involves a partnership with New York University (NYU) Langone Health. The company arranges on-demand helicopter missions for NYU transplant teams and donor organs. This 24/7 arrangement has reduced travel times between NYU Langone Health and donor hospitals by up to three hours. After retrieving an organ from the donor hospital, the NYU transport team takes a Blade-arranged jet, followed by a helicopter to the East 34th Street Heliport (6N5) in Manhattan, which is right next to the hospital, eliminating crosstown travel.