Uber to test flying taxis in Melbourne

Melbourne has been chosen to test run UberAir, with a fleet of 1000 “flying taxis” to get the regulatory go ahead soon.

The Victorian Government is helping Uber “navigate the regulatory landscape” and “broker federal relationships” on its path to begin commercial operations in 2023.

Uber will use its e-VTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) fleet, which have a 100 kilometres range flying at altitudes up to 500 metres at up to 320 kilometres per hour.

The routes currently being considered are Melbourne to Geelong and Melbourne CBD to Melbourne airport, with a flight time of just 10 minutes. The cost of the UberAir service is anticipated to be equivalent to that of an Uber Black trip (around $75).

The helicopters would not need to follow fixed routes, and the tops of over 80 buildings are being considered to be repurposed as skyports.

Flights are expected to begin sometime this year with already existing helicopters between the city and airport.