A look at an HAI member up close and personal.
Designed by pilots for pilots, Helipaddy is the world’s largest database of off-airfield helicopter landing sites. The London-based company’s mission is, in part, to “make finding a place to land as simple as finding a supermarket.”
Founders Paddy and Sarah Wills created Helipaddy in 2014 after growing tired of having to rely on outdated travel guides and flight manuals to locate helicopter landing sites. The two decided to create a new, digital platform to connect pilots across the globe to a range of off-site locations where helicopters can land, such as hotels, restaurants, vineyards, and other private destinations.
By encouraging landing-site reviews and recommendations and verifying all landing-site information with the sites’ owners, Helipaddy has established its database app as a valuable preflight planning tool. Today, the database provides information on more than 12,000 landing sites in over 60 countries.
More Than Just an Index
Helipaddy is more than a site index. The team at Helipaddy works to deliver travel insights and spark conversation through articles and a newsletter. The company recently launched its Pilot Interview Series, which has included exclusive conversations with Andrew Brandt, a line pilot at the National Police Air Service, which serves England and Wales; and Nancy Bradshaw, who flies a Gulfstream GIV-SP business jet and is also a helicopter pilot. The Helipaddy blog features curated lists of recommended helipads, which can be located via the app, and brief stories about helicopter-friendly hotels, specific helicopter landing sites around the world, and more.
Helipaddy updates its app regularly to enhance both its efficiency and content. Recent modifications have added filter strengthening and notifications improvements as well as silent pad updates.
Earlier this year, Helipaddy expanded to the United States, news the company revealed at HAI HELI-EXPO 2022 in March. As part of this growth process, the company announced a program that enables US-based app users to receive premium membership by contributing five landing sites to the Helipaddy database.
Initial landing sites in the Helipaddy database for the States have focused on California, Texas, and Florida. With this new program, Helipaddy’s database of pads across the country is growing daily.