Helijet says it will introduce B.C.’s first electric helicopter-style aircraft to its fleet as part of a new partnership with a U.S.-based “global air mobility” company.
Helijet announced Thursday it has entered into an agreement with Blade Urban Air Mobility Inc.
In a news release, the company says the new partnership will “accelerate the introduction and commercialization of newer, more sustainable and cost-effect EVA (Electric Vertical Aircraft” into communities served by Blade and Helijet.
Helijet president Danny Sitnam told CHEK News that a trip from Victoria to Vancouver via EVA is projected to take 18 minutes. Currently, the same trip via Helijet takes approximately 35 minutes.
“You’re going to get there a little quicker, you’re going to get there a little quieter,” said Sitnam.
“EVA technologies are going to change aviation in the same way that the jet engine revolutionized air travel 60 years ago,” added Sitnam. “EVA will make urban air mobility more efficient, more sustainable, and more affordable. In Blade, we have found a unique partner that shares our commitment to customer service and experience, safety and innovation.”
In addition to the new electric-powered aircraft, the companies are reviewing potential new routes in B.C. and the Pacific Northwest.
Those routes could include new connections to Vancouver, Seattle and Portland as well as other locations in the Pacific Northwest.
The deal will see Blade take over exclusive rights for flight booking on Helijet routes, integrating its booking and sales technologies “to achieve greater reach,” the companies said.
“This partnership is a perfect fit with Blade’s mission to eliminate travel friction around the world,” said Melissa Tomkiel, President of Blade.
“Like Danny and the team at Helijet, we recognize EVA’s incredible potential. Together we are committed to making aviation more accessible, and our transition to lower-cost, quiet and emission-free EVA should only serve to increase the number of passengers that travel by air between Helijet and Blade locations and the value proposition to our fliers.”
Blade will also have the right to acquire up to 49 per cent of Helijet subsidiary Pacific Heliport Services, which operates heliport terminals in Vancouver, Victoria and Nanaimo.